In October, Milestone Auctions of suburban Cleveland, Ohio, was honored to conduct the sale of the Charlie Schalebaum collection of classic cars and motoring memorabilia. However, the Pennsylvania antiques dealer known as the “king of Hershey” had many other collecting interests, as bidders will discover at Milestone’s December 16, 2017, auction of Schalebaum’s private collection of art and antiques.
“Charlie was one of the most respected and knowledgeable antique dealers of his era,” said Milestone co-owner Chris Sammet. “He had a flawless eye for quality across many categories and always bought the best, both for his customers and for his personal collection, which we are so honored to be auctioning on behalf of his estate.”
Schalebaum’s extensive art collection reveals many important works, including a portrait of a youthful, clean-shaven Edgar Allan Poe, attributed to the accomplished painter of American presidents Thomas Sully (1783-1872). Signed with the artist’s monogram, the 30- by 26-inch oil-on-canvas painting identifies the subject on verso as “Edgar Allen (sic.) Poe.” Estimate: $100-$10,000
An oil-on-canvas painting of an Indian chief is signed “A.D.M. Cooper” and is attributed to Astley David Middleton Cooper (American, 1856-1924). “Cooper was a noted California artist who specialized in the Native-American genre,” said Sammet. “This artwork is definitely going to appeal to the many collectors who appreciate Cooper’s 19th century depictions of the vanishing West.” Estimate: $100-$10,000
Within the European art selection is an equine treasure attributed to Johann Elias Ridinger that depicts a Royal Lippizan horse. A centuries old Austrian breed, the Lippizaner are renowned for their skills in classical dressage and are perhaps most famous for having been rescued from the Nazi threat during World War II by US General George S. Patton. The artwork measures 26 by 23 inches. Estimate: $100-$10,000
Schalebaum had an appreciation for posters and advertising, as well. His collection contains dozens of vintage posters, including one with a magic theme that advertises a turbaned mystic known as “Alexander – The Man Who Knows,” estimate $400-$600. Several posters and signs have a car racing or petroliana theme, including the early French-language Eoline tin advertisement for motor oil that is estimated at $300-$500.
Sports memorabilia is another category featured in the sale. Among the highlights are a 1968 Topps #177 Nolan Ryan rookie card in extremely clean condition, est. $300-$600; and a 16- by 20-inch autographed, matted and framed photo-poster of Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James in the process of dunking a basketball, $800-$1,200.
Historical pieces fascinated Schalebaum, Chris Sammet said. “He was one of those rare individuals who was curious about everything.” His wide-ranging knowledge is reflected in such items as antique gold and silver coins – a 1904 US $20 gold Liberty coin is estimated at $1,200-$1,600 – and classic cinema. A 6ft-long screen-used movie prop ship from the 1925 silent film Ben-Hur could reach $6,000-$10,000.
While it would seem apparent that Charlie Schalebaum’s man cave was generously outfitted with “mantiques,” the remainder of the family residence was also a wonder to behold, with fine and beautiful things at every turn. An exquisite R&W Wilson (Philadelphia) coin-silver coffee pot was made sometime between 1825 and 1846. “R.W. Wilson silver is found in several prestigious collections, including the Smithsonian, Winterthur, and the Boston Museum of Fine Art,” Sammet remarked. The coffee pot weighs 37.65 ozt, stands 10-1/2 inches tall, and has a figural finial that depicts a Chinese man. Estimate: $3,000-$5,000.
Another wonderful antique in the Schalebaum collection is a circa 1910 Pairpoint Seagull table lamp, one of three Pairpoints to be auctioned. All original, its shade is painted with a stunning scene of a sailing ship on the ocean, with seagulls soaring overhead against a multicolored sky. This very rare lamp is expected to make $4,000-$6,000.
Dozens of other categories are represented in the sale, including coin-op machines, jewelry, tobacciana, Black Americana, snuff bottles, crystal and fossils; circus and ocean liner memorabilia; fraternal items, and many more.
Milestone’s Saturday, December 16, 2017 auction of the late Charlie Schalebaum’s personal art and antiques collection will begin at 10 AM ET, with all forms of bidding available, including live online. Address: 3860 Ben Hur Avenue, Unit 8, Willoughby, OH 44094. For additional information, call (440) 527-8060 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, and online at www.milestoneauctions.com or www.LiveAuctioneers.com.