With New England having structures dating back to the 1600’s it should come as no surprise that there are many architectural antiques available and buyers who want them. Barn boards are used by those looking to build new buildings or repair existing barns. The movement to be green and sustainable has also made the barn wood desirable for people who repurpose or upcycle. The wood is used to create furniture, signs and crafts.
Many other salvaged objects find their way back into homes like doors, windows, and fireplace mantels, newel posts and other stair components. Most contractors and individuals restoring old homes prefer using parts that are original to the time period instead of reproductions.
There are some architectural antiques so desirable that rooms and even homes are designed around them. For example, I was asked to evaluate some Tiffany stained glass church windows. They were approximately 9’ tall. The value was easy to determine because a similar window had been sold by a Brattleboro, Vermont church. The Brattleboro church’s heating bill for the previous year was $34,000 and they sold the window to keep up with expenses. The window brought $85,000.
An original marble statue by a well known artist could make you a millionaire. Even a copy or sculpture by a lesser artist can bring five figure sums. Many antique cast iron fountains and sculptures can bring similar figures. Iron gates, urns and other garden accessories often bring figures in the $100’s or more.
Chandeliers are also in demand. We’ve had a large modern crystal chandelier bring over $900 at an online estate auction. An old gas light chandelier brought nearly double that figure at one of our live auctions.
We’ve sold some architectural items at auction that have drawn a considerable amount of interest. A round piece of terra cotta picturing a figure in a hat came with great provenance. An old photo showed it was part of the Arcade Building in Westborough, MA. It sold for nearly $400. A tile lion was purported to have been part of the old post office building in Westerly, RI. It brought over $750. We sold a small steel building that was manufactured in the 1910’s. It was one of the buildings that housed a gas station in Auburn, MA near the Worcester line. It went for over $4,000. Many architectural pieces are works of art. We sold an early banner, folk art weathervane that brought over $5,000.
There are buyers for all parts of a home including the bathroom and kitchen. Worcester once housed the “American Sanitary Housing Museum”. “The Plumbing Museum” now resides in Watertown. Antiques on display include clawfoot wood framed bathtubs, pre-plumbing earth closets and a collection of vintage toilet paper. You can find anything plumbing related, even the kitchen sink.
We are continuing to add photos as we make more pickups for our January 28th auction. Please keep checking www.centralmassauctions.com or follow us on social media to keep updated on this auction and other events.
Contact us at: Wayne Tuiskula Auctioneer/Appraiser Central Mass Auctions for Antique Auctions, Estate Sales and Appraisal Services www.centralmassauctions.com (508-612- 6111), firstname.lastname@example.org