Auctions: The good, bad and worthwhile
For the last couple of years when people have asked me about how to get rid of their assets, the very first thing I say is "Do not hold an auction."
It is not a seller's market, it is a buyer's market and I have added that the low prices that items are sold for is criminal. I have come to that conclusion because that has been the case at the auctions that I have been to of late.
The one exception is an auction in Chicago where all of the items were high end and good quality. Most auctions have only a few quality items, so once the trend has been set with low sale prices, it extends to the good stuff.
My other judgment involves the auctioneers. We all have our favorites and we all have those we do not like.
Some we do not trust, some we cannot understand, some linger too long and have a slow hammer and some go so quickly you cannot understand them. Some salt their sales with fakes and some always have a phantom bidder.
Some people do not like to stay all day to bid on one item. Some auctioneers will put up a piece out of order if you ask. Others will not stray from their original plan. With all of this said, Mr. Haynes of Bement (now retired) and Gordy Hannigan (now departed) were two of my favorites.
The Bauer brothers (now just one brother) have not been among my favorites, but they always seem to have really good stuff at their auctions.
They draw really good crowds and have been in business for years, so they must be doing something right. Do not miss their auction on Aug. 31 in Mahomet.
It is the finest array of true antiques that I have ever seen. There is big stuff, lots of smalls, clean and everything works. It is the lifetime collection of Darlene and her deceased husband, Duane, who had a good eye and great taste.
We saw the items quite a while ago and I know the family has kept a few things that will not be in the auction, but you will not be disappointed. Just the house and grounds where the auction will be held are worth the effort of going to this auction.
Watch for the upcoming ads in The News-Gazette for this upcoming auction.
Bob Swisher has been a collector since he was a child. Questions or comments can be mailed to 807 S. Cottage Grove Ave., Urbana, IL 61801, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.