The Arms, Armour, Militaria & Ethnographica department at Tennants Auctioneers has been going from strength to strength under the expert guidance of Oonagh Drage who established this specialist sale back in 2006, the first one making a total of just over £40,000. Today, the diverse and exciting discipline has drawn a strong following of international buyers and sellers to Tennants, so it comes as no surprise that the sale on April 4th broke its own record by achieving a total hammer price of just over £173,000, a staggering £35,000 more than the previous highest hammer price set in the spring of 2011.
Lot 130, a silver model of an RAF Hawker Fury Biplane dispelled the notion that all silver is bought at its scrap value by soaring above estimate and being bought privately for an amazing £14,000. This of course was not the only noteworthy lot of the sale. A pair of 19th century duelling/ Officer’s Percussion Cap Pistols by Joh and Kuchenreuter in very good condition made £6,200 and another pair of 19th century Flintlock Officer’s Pistols made £4,200.
The Reynolds collection of North American Points which were academically fascinating all exceeded their estimate selling for a total of £2,800; 5 of the 6 lots went to the same private collector. Another interesting ethnographic lot was lot 369, a 19th century Haida Horn Spoon which, originally brought in for research, created a stir in the room with a telephone bidding war – the final hammer price was £1,800.
Oonagh commented that overall it was an excellent sale with many star lots but it was particularly interesting to see increased popularity in the Korean War Medals, which are becoming very collectable. The most prominent lot in this section was the first lot of the whole sale, a Second World War / Korean War Group of five medals awarded to Pilot Alex H Donaldson who joined the RAF in 1944 and served in the Far East until 1952, this lot realised £4,000.
Entries invited for the next Militaria & Ethnographica sale (Friday 22 June), which will include a rare 19th century Vampire Slaying Kit. For more information please contact Oonagh Drage directly on 01969 623780