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Revival of Interest in Currier Prints
(Article orginally published December 1928 by The Antiquarian)
Speaking of the prices that were realized for a collection of Currier & Ives prints, earlier in the year, we propsied that "Time will undoubtedly show that the buyers who advantage of low prices...will later find they invested wisely."
Now, before 1928 has passed, we are able to point to the recent sale of the collection made by Norman James of Baltimore, which was dispersed last month at the Anderson Galleries. And we can point to it justifying our previous optimism that there would be a revival of interest in Currier prints. All the prices at the Norman James sale were noteworthy, but many of them were exceptional. The outstanding item was the $3,000 paid for "The Life of a Hunter" after Tait. The series entitled "A Rising Family," "The Cares of a Family" and "A Happy Family" realized $2,675, which the "American National Game of Baseball" brought $1,500. Prairie and hunting scenes resulted in keen competition among the collector present, "On the Prairie" and "Life on the Prairie" each being bid up to $1,000.
Other high prices illustrate the keenness with which Currier & Ives work is being sought were: "Home to Thanksgiving," $875; "Winter in the Country," $950; "Skating on Central Park," $600; "Foxhunting," $920. The interest is by no means restricted to any one subject if we may judge from the prices bid for the various prints included in this sales. Views of cities were as much in demand as those we have already quoted. Two views of Baltimore were as much in demand as those we have already quoted. Two views of Baltimore found buyers at $700 and $500, respectively; One of West Point showing the town of Newburgh $410; Richmond $350 and Washington $380. There were many other prints by different engravers, which were as eagerly bid for as those of Currier & Ives.