One of our favourite type of sales we offer at Visbids is an eclectic, wide ranging, multi-estate auction of antique and vintage items, that showcases what interesting passions people have when it comes to collecting! This auction encompasses everything from formal dinnerware and sterling silver, to primitive hand carved oxen yokes and antique hand forged axe heads.
Several of the antique tools are signed, with makers’ and owners’ names, such as a pair of handsaws signed “W. Tyzack Sons & Turner”’ and truly beautifully made brass back saws, made in Sheffield circa 1920. It’s so interesting these days of mass production to see the care and time that went into creating, not just functional, but aesthetically pleasing tools to work with. They were clearly made to last a lifetime.
We have several tabletop games and boards, including an extremely rare wooden Ouija board, patented Feb. 10, 1891. The exact origins of the first Ouija boards are unknown. It apparently originated in Ohio spiritualist camps in the late 1900’s, and was referred to as a “talking board”, and used parchment or paper with letters. Charles Kennard quickly realized its potential to capitalize on the spiritualism craze that was sweeping the globe, and began marketing an official “Talking Board” product. It was apparently quite common for a family to own a Ouija board at the time. This board has a beautiful patina, and is in very good condition.
One of our favourite pieces is a primitive carved wooden bull’s head that was found hanging on the side of a barn in Quebec. Bearing red painted ears, it was apparently thought by the farmer to frighten off predatory animals. Not too sure of the effectiveness of this strategy, but there is no doubt it is an unusual example of early Canadian folk art.
The series of four bottle green glass doors, with classic art nouveau detailing, is unique. Originally from a large cabinet, the consignor had them arrayed on the wall as works of art. Each door is part of an overall sports hunting theme, including a baying dog, a breaching sailfish, an indigenous figure with a raised rifle, and a mounted horse rider.
On the more formal side, we have a large, heavy set of antique sterling silver flatware, marked “Dingwall”. D.R Dingwall was a Canadian company out of Manitoba, known for the manufacture of fine gold and platinum work, silver smithing and diamond setting. Facing tough economic times in the 1930’s they amalgamated with Henry Birks and Sons in 1933. This set of flatware is pre Birks, and in the lovely “King’s Pattern. The sterling chatelaine is one of the more elaborate ones we have seen. Derived from the French for “Lady of the Castle”, it was originally intended to be worn on a belt, from which the castle keys were suspended. Over time they evolved to support several chains from which small but essential household objects could be suspended. This beauty has seven tools, all done in an intricate repousse pattern. In very good condition.
As always, we encourage you to come and view our auctions in person. We are happy to make arrangements for a preview, or to answer any emails or phone calls if you need clarification on a particular item.
Call John at 416 453 0920