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Nineteenth-Century Stevengraph Horse-Racing Silks (3)
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $593
This collection of three nineteenth-century Stevengraph horse-racing silks is highlighted by a rare example featuring an Allen & Ginter advertising mount. While many collectors are familiar with the classic nineteenth-century Stevengraph silk titled "Iroquois - Winner of the Derby 1881," they have rarely, if ever, encountered it displayed in the manner offered here: housed in an Allen & Ginter advertising mount. This is the first example of a Stevengraph "Iroquois - Winner of the Derby 1881" silk in an Allen & Ginter advertising mount we have ever seen, let alone offered (they are normally found in a Stevengraph mount bearing the title of the piece on the front and advertising for other Stevengraph silks on the reverse). The silk features Iroquois in mid stride ridden by a jockey in a red shirt. The medium of silk weaving allows for extraordinary detail and brilliant color. As noted earlier, the silk (8.75 x 3.5 inches) was produced by Stevengraph Works, the preeminent woven-silk manufacturers of the era. The cabinet-card style mount (9.25 x 4.5 inches) advertises for Allen & Ginter's "Richmond Straight Cut Cigarettes," with the text reading in part "they are made from the most delicate flavored and highest cost Gold Leaf tobacco grown, and guaranteed to be ABSOLUTELY PURE." The silk displays a few areas of light staining, most noticeably in the upper right corner, and is in apparent Very Good condition. The mount is toned and is in apparent Very Good condition as well. Matted and framed to total dimensions of 17.25 x 12.5 inches. The remaining two silks in the collection are as follows: 1) Cut silk (8.5 x 4.5 inches) depicting a jockey atop a racehorse. The text at the base of the silk reads "Richmond Straight Cut No 1 Cigarettes ARE THE BEST." The irregularly cut silk displays a small tear and minor staining. Good condition. Matted (by means of tape along both the right and left borders) to total dimensions of 13 x 9.5 inches. 2) Cut silk (4.5 x 2 inches) depicting a jockey atop a racehorse. The text at the base of the silk reads "Richmond Straight Cut No 1 Cigarettes ARE THE BEST." The silk displays a wavy left and right border, light staining, and paper residue on the reverse. In Very Good condition. Total: 3 silks. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $593
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