GPHS Moorings Newsletters - page 127

GPHS’s Own Antiques Road Show
Trash, treasure, or somewhere in between? That was the question on the minds of the people who attended the Grosse
Pointe Historical Society’s recent antiques appraisal event.
Veteran appraiser Bob DuMouchelle of DuMouchelle Art Gallery in Detroit volunteered his time to help attendees sepa-
rate the worthy from the worthless.
“I always enjoy seeing what shows up,” says Bob, who also appears on the popular PBS series “Antiques Roadshow.”
“Even after so many years in the business, I’m still surprised at what comes out of the woodwork.”
Curious collectors – most from Grosse Pointe and other nearby suburbs -- showed up on a snowy Saturday and paid $5
for each item to find out more about their family heirlooms and estate sale finds. All proceeds went to support GPHS
programs. Docent Nancy Pacitto presided over the event.
From a cow bell to a copy of the Count of Monte Cristo, the items ran the gamut from collectible to kitsch.
GPHS Board member Tom Singelyn was among those who patiently waited their turn for DuMouchelle’s attention. He
brought with him a family whiskey bottle, a military medal, a Disney tea set, a military print and a letter opener.
DuMouchelle was most intrigued with the letter opener, which he identified as Turkish and dated to the 19th century.
“If it’s sterling, which is hard to tell, it’s worth about $2,500,” DuMouchelle told him . “If it’s not sterling, only $1,500.
Either way, it’s a beautiful piece.”
Peter Nyboer of Grosse Pointe City brought in a painting. “A neighbor lady gave it to me,” he says. “With the Ashcan
exhibition at the DIA, I wondered if it was the Ashcan School,” he said.
DuMouchelle identified the work as one by Alexander Minewski, an American painter who lived from 1917-1979. “That
could have coincided with the Ashcan School,” he said. “It’s an intriguing work.” He valued it at approximately $500.
Nyboer also brought in a foot warmer ($200-$400) and a Shaker-style box sporting the original milk paint ($500-$800).
Other highlights include a French mantel clock worth $200-$300, a 19th-century wool winder ($400-$600) and an orig-
inal Audubon bird print – the most valuable item brought in that day.
“Audubon is widely copied, but I truly believe this one is original,” says DuMouchelle. “This is a really, really nice
piece, although it could use a reframing.” He valued the large print at $3,000-$5,000 at auction.
Valerie Dodenhoff, also a board member, brought in some beautiful sterling spoons in a fitted case that were appraised
at $250 and an intricate vintage print of a Latin star chart. She expressed the feelings of everyone at the first (but
hopefully not last) event .
“This is fun,” she says. “I like seeing what everyone else brings in. It’s just like watching Antiques Roadshow.”
Khristi Zimmeth
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