In The News

Old Town Auctions’ July 17 no-reserve sale presents a celestial array of robots, space toys and futuristic TV/film collectibles

June 25th, 2010 by

More than 800 lots span a time-travel zone from the 1930s-1990s

One of several “easel-back” tin wind-up robots with appealing primitive decoration and simple, forward-walking action. Old Town Auctions image.

BUCKEYSTOWN, Md. – On Saturday, July 17, Old Town Auctions will boldly go where they’ve never gone before – selling robots, space toys, Star Wars, action figures and other quality sci-fi and fantasy collectibles. The event will be held at Alexander’s Inn Auction House in Buckeystown, a suburb of Frederick, Maryland, and convenient to Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington D.C.

Auctioneer Rick Opfer will preside over approximately 600 cataloged lots, to be preceded by 200 uncataloged lots. Toys from both groups will be offered without reserve, and each will be sold to the highest bidder regardless of price. All traditional methods of bidding will be accepted, as well as online absentee bidding, but there will be no live Internet bidding during the sale, said Old Town’s owner, Matt Protos.

The toys to be auctioned will take bidders back to the future, from vintage wind-up and battery-operated space toys to contemporary figural robot artworks by acclaimed Pennsylvania folk artist Kent Greenbaum.

Space toys include rockets, robots, flying saucers, space stations, space tanks and missile launchers, ray guns and a whole host of extraterrestrial aliens creatures and monsters – many in their original, colorfully pictorial factory boxes.

The interplanetary theme continues with an array of sci-fi toys from postwar-era films and TV shows, including Star Wars, Star Trek, Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, Battlestar Galactica, Aliens, Dune, Mars Attacks, Close Encounters and many more.

“Unlike previous sales where there may be a small number of exceptional items, this auction offers a large selection of desirable merchandise for the average or avid collector. There were two major consignments – one from a space toy collector and the other from a Star Wars collector – but there are good solid items in literally every category of this sale,” Protos said.

Boxed large-size action figure of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back bounty hunter and Han Solo enemy Boba Fett, made by Kenner. Old Town Auctions image.

The extensive selection of Star Wars licensed merchandise traverses the incomparable 33-year franchise in the form of playsets, ships and vehicles; as well as a legion of action figures, including the Power of the Force and Power of the Jedi lines.

“There are action figures representing nearly every line of Star Wars collectibles, and many are in their original boxes or cards and in mint condition,” Protos noted.

The auction will also include robots and action figures from animated TV shows such as Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Sectaurs, Masters of the Universe and more.

Back on terra firma, the toy selection features a wide variety of G.I. Joe action figures, playsets and accessories. Highlights include a vintage G.I. Joe Space Capsule, an expansive G.I. Joe Headquarters, a coveted 7-foot-long U.S.S. Flagg aircraft carrier, Terror Dome set and more.

Other action figures, accessories and playsets to be auctioned include popular Superheroes, with the list topped by Batman. Figures, toys, Batmobiles, vehicles and other collectibles associated with the Caped Crusader are offered in excellent condition – many of them mint in the box.

One of 10 Kent Greenbaum-designed folk art robots, each unique and constructed from spare toy parts, hardware and other offbeat fragments. Old Town Auctions image.

The unique designs of contemporary self-taught artist Kent Greenbaum have attracted considerable interest over the past few years. Greenbaum’s imaginative robot creations incorporate spare toy parts, fragments from advertising items, household objects and other pieces gleaned from unusual sources. “Each robot is completely unique. In this sale we’ll have 10 of them to offer to collectors,” said Protos.

Although it is primarily a space toy sale, Protos says there will also be an abundance of battery-operated construction toys, military toys (tanks, cannons, Jeeps) and Western items. Articles with a cowboy theme include cap guns and other highly desirable toys branded for the Lone Ranger or Hopalong Cassidy.

Dealers and collectors, alike, will have the opportunity to “buy quality in bulk,” Protos said. While the more-expensive items will be auctioned individually, there will also be a number of lots in the cataloged section containing 20 to 30 items. In the uncataloged group, some lots will contain 50 to 60 items.

Old Town Auctions’ July 17 sale will be held at Alexander’s Inn Auction House, 3607 Buckeystown Pike, Buckeystown, Maryland. The sale will start at 10 a.m., with a two-hour preview preceding the sale.

Any questions may be directed to Matt Protos by calling 301-416-2854 or e-mailing

To view the fully illustrated auction catalog or to leave absentee bids online, log on to or at

Fellows & Sons – Auction of Antique & Modern Jewelry

June 22nd, 2010 by

Preview June 29th – July 1st

Auction July 1st  10:30am

William H. Bunch Auctions – Chadds Ford, Pa

June 21st, 2010 by

Von Zezschwitz – Kunst Und Design

June 21st, 2010 by


Furniture, lamps and objects designed by important international architects
July 1st, 2010

More than 200 furniture, lamps, carpets, objects, architectural drawings, photographs and books from Art Nouveau, Bauhaus, design of the 50-70ties until the present day.

Ivey – Selkirk June Jackson Rooms Auction

June 21st, 2010 by

Auction June 23rd & 24th  9:30am

Preview June 22nd

Jackson Rooms sessions include American, Continental, English and Asian Antique and Semi-Antique Furniture including bookcases and dining tables.

Rago’s No Reserve Discovery and Great Estates Auctions

June 16th, 2010 by

Discovery Auction – June 18th  10am

Great Estates Auction – June 19th  12pm

Furnishings by Gustav Stickley, L&JG Stickley, Charles Stickley, Stickley Bros, Limbert, Roycroft, J.M. Young, Plail.

Pottery, Ceramics, metal and Glass by Rookwood, Grueby, Newcomb, Ohr, Fulper, Marblehead, Saturday Evening Girls, North Dakota School of Mines, Wheatley, Hampshire, Peters & Reed, Van Briggle, Kipp, Heinrichs, WMF, Heintz, Tiffany Studios, Steuben, Durand, Weller, Roseville, Dow. American Art pottery by Grueby, Fulper, Volkmar, Marblehead.


June 15th, 2010 by

Market Preview going on now, 12PM to 7PM until July 10 & 11 when the market time changes from 9AM to 4PM for our Grand Opening.


  • The largest year-round vendor market in the Philadelphia Area consisting of 200 vendors!
  • Vendors selling ORGANIC, locally grown and produced FOOD and food products, ARTS and CRAFTS, CLOTHING, ANTIQUES, vintage goods and collectibles.
  • The Market at the Piazza will continue year-round every Saturday and Sunday, from 9AM to 4PM on both days.


  • $100,000 being spent on press to advertise!
  • Our GRAND OPENING WEEKEND is Saturday July 10 and Sunday July 11, 2010 from 9AM to 4PM on both days.
  • ***The Grand Opening Weekend is FREE for all 200 SELECT vendors.***
  • Vendors MUST apply online at
  • You will be selected via EMAIL to participate in the Grand Opening.


  • There is no place like it in the region!! Located at the award-winning Piazza at Schmidt’s complex in Northern Liberties, Philadelphia
  • The Market at the Piazza is easily accessed by public transportation and highways, with abundant parking at 2nd & Germantown Avenue!
  • The Piazza is doubling the size of its current parking lot.
  • The Piazza is an absolute lock on becoming a NATIONAL TOURIST ATTRACTION – recently featured as one of “SIX PHILLY GEMS BEYOND THE LIBERTY BELL” on CNN


  • $100/weekend or $75/day, after July 17th: $80/weekend or $40/day
  • Student discount: 20%
  • Bulk discount: 10% for 5 ,6, 7, 8 or 9 weekends, 15% for 10 or more weekends


  • Call us: 215-467-4603
  • Email us:
  • Tables, tents, and chairs are available to rent every day!
  • Reserve in advance or pay same day – it’s that easy!

The Piazza at Schmidt’s
2nd & Germantown Avenue, Below Girard
Northern Liberties, Philadelphia, PA 19123
215-467-4603 –

East meets West June 26-27 as Austin Auction Gallery presents European Antiques and Religious Treasures of French Colonial Vietnam

June 14th, 2010 by

AUSTIN, Texas – The stellar Whit Hanks collection of European antiques and Vietnamese French Catholic religious relics serves as the centerpiece of Austin Auction Gallery’s June 26-27 East Meets West cataloged Estates Auction. A total of 600 lots will be offered, 350 coming from the Hanks collection.

Owner of a high-profile antiques center located in Austin’s original Coca-Cola bottling plant, Whit Hanks is also a real estate developer known for rescuing and relocating two complete 19th-century Vietnamese churches to a country property in Dripping Springs, near Austin.

“Mr. Hanks is an antiques icon in Austin and always ahead of the next collecting trend,” said Austin Auction Gallery associate Chris Featherston. “He owns the city’s premier multi-dealer gallery and is known for his impeccable taste in European antiques and Mexican religious art, which he bought and sold for nearly 30 years before discovering the colonial treasures of Vietnam.”

French 8½-foot-tall gold leaf mirror with a carved putto and wolves’ heads. Austin Auction Gallery image.

Initially drawn to antiques after inheriting his grandfather’s lavishly furnished New York apartment in the 1970s, Hanks made dozens of trips to Europe in pursuit of architectural antiques. “He would bring back spectacular stained glass and monumental mirrors, similar to the 8½-foot-tall gold leaf mirror with a carved putto and wolves’ heads that’s included in the June sale,” said Featherston.

The auction’s inventory list is also rife with evidence of Hanks’ attraction to offbeat items that aren’t standard fare in an antique gallery – things like the 30 to 40 antique terra-cotta olive jars acquired in northern Spain, each of substantial heft and standing 3½ feet tall. “If Mr. Hanks saw something he knew was special and there was a shipping container large enough to accommodate it, he would buy it,” Featherston said.

Whit Hanks’ appreciation for religious icons began in the 1980s, Featherston said, and some of his purchases were made at sales conducted by Austin Auction Gallery. “At that time, we’ve been told that it was possible to buy retablos in Mexico, six for $10. The interest in these objects was not all that great back then, but now those same retablos may be valued at $2,000 to $3,000 apiece.”

In 2007, while visiting his son who lives in Asia, Hanks discovered and made an immediate connection with the French-influenced religious antiques and architecture of Vietnam. He began to buy the relics with the same fervor that spurred his earlier trips to Europe and Mexico. Now headed to auction, the Asian collection includes more than 40 antique French colonial statues up to 45 inches tall, several relief-carved religious panels – one of them after a 15th-century Italian painting – carved altar adornments and stone heads; and a compartmented Vietnamese marriage box with lacquered faux-tortoiseshell lid. These beautiful artworks would find a fitting home in either of the two French religious cabinets to be auctioned.

An extensive selection of carved Chinese and Japanese ivories will be auctioned. Shown here is a tripodal censer with dragon motif. Austin Auction Gallery image.

The sale also features property from several distinguished estates, including art and ivory from the Marshall estate, formerly of New Orleans. Thirty pieces of Chinese and Japanese ivory will cross the auction block, including an extraordinary chess set whose “kings” each measure 12 inches tall, a profusely carved censer on tripod feet, and other fine carvings featuring deities and elders. A walking cane collection includes examples that are entirely of ivory as well as some that feature carved-ivory heads of dogs and other creatures.

A small but highly select collection of swords includes an early 19th-century showstopper of Indo-Persian origin. The sword’s decorative gilt grip and guard terminate in a three-dimensional horse-head form with jeweled ruby eyes. A foliate-decorated scabbard completes the regal presentation of this connoisseur’s edged weapon.

In the fine-art section of the sale, one of the most sought-after names in Texas regional art, Julian Onderdonk (1882-1922), is represented by a signed, oil-on-canvas landscape painting of a quintessential Hill Country scene. Handsomely framed, the artwork titled Springtime II, Texas, Bexar County measures 11¼ inches by 8½ inches and is additionally signed and titled on verso.

The furniture category is led by a circa-1880 Eastlake bedroom suite with marble-top dresser, a Victorian half-tester bed, and numerous pieces of French furniture, including a large oak vasselier.

American half-tester bed. Austin Auction Gallery image.

An Italian crystal chandelier of near-diamond shape has a drop length of 38 inches and a width of 34 inches. Another lot expect to light up the gallery on auction day is the late-19th-century bronze chandelier with six lights on arms formed as winged griffins.

Additional items of note include a pair of marble lions that formerly guarded the entrance to a palace in India, 2-ft.-tall Murano millefiori glass eggs converted to lamps, several 18th-century French clocks, a pietre dure table, a circa-1900 Ernst Plank (Germany) magic lantern with 23 colored-glass slides, and a selection of Native-American art highlighted by a circa 1200 A.D. to 1350 A.D. Southwestern pottery bowl. An actual cage-style elevator from a Paris building would be a guaranteed conversation-starter in any home.

All forms of bidding will be available for Austin Auction Gallery’s June 26-27 East Meets West sale, including live via the Internet through For additional information, call 512-258-5479 or e-mail View the fully illustrated catalog online and sign up to bid absentee or live via the Internet at Visit Austin Auction Gallery’s Web site at

Susanin’s – Fine Art & Antique Furniture, Decorations & Jewelry

June 14th, 2010 by

Auction: June 19th, 2010

Preview: June 14th – 19th

Stair Auctioneers & Appraisers

June 11th, 2010 by

The Collection of Douglas S. Cramer & Hubert S. Bush III

Dogwood Farm

Roxbury, CT

Exhibition – June 11th – 26th, 2010