The vintage bottle collection of Tom McCandless will be sold in three sessions The lifetime, single-owner bottle and flask collection of Tom McCandless will be sold in three sessions by Norman C. Heckler & Company. Session I (83 lots) will go online Sept. 28 and end Oct. 8.
News-Antique.com - Sep 02,2011 - (WOODSTOCK, Conn.) – The lifetime, single-owner bottle and flask collection of Tom McCandless – a dedicated collector whose recent passing left a void in the bottle and glass collecting field – will be sold in three sessions by Norman C. Heckler & Company. Session I (83 lots) will go online Wednesday, Sept. 28 (at www.hecklerauction.com), and conclude with a live auction on Saturday, Oct. 8.
Session II (123 lots) will go online Oct. 5 and conclude Oct. 19. Previews will be held by appointment from Sept. 20 to Oct. 18. Session III (122 lots) will go online Jan. 18, 2012 and end Feb. 1, 2012. Previews will be held, by appointment, from Sept. 20, 2011 to Jan. 31, 2012. The very best pieces in the auctions will be in the later sessions, but virtually all bottles are desirable.
Mr. McCandless’s collection is indeed impressive. Over the course of 40 years, he accumulated the very best of flasks, bitters, whiskeys, medicines, milks, sodas, fruit jars, pickles and more. These were kept at his home in Hopewell, N.J., where he lived with his wife, Marion.
“The quality and the breathtaking range of beautiful colors that exist in Tom’s collection are immediately obvious,” said Norman Heckler, Sr., of Norman C. Heckler & Co. “He was one of the first collectors to focus on color diversity. This is accepted by collectors today as perhaps the most important characteristic of an important glass collection, but Tom was one of the first.”
The McCandless collection is hitting the market at a time when antique bottles and glass are particularly hot. “They're on a definite upswing, both in interest and prices realized,” Mr. Heckler remarked. “The demand for flasks and bitters, especially, is insatiable, especially at the high end. The market may be flat for some collectibles, but not so for antique bottles and glass.”
One bottle being offered is expected to bring $20,000-$30,000, and it was one of Mr. McCandless’s personal favorites. It is an Albany Glass Works (N.Y.) Washington portrait flask, made circa 1848-1850. It is an exceptional half-pint flask in every way, with strong embossing and rare and beautiful coloration (light golden yellow with a deeper golden color neck and base).
Fully five bottles carry pre-sale estimates of $10,000-$20,000 each. They are as follows:
An S. C. Brown’s figural herb bitters bottle (Phila., circa 1860-1880), triangular, with beveled corners, strong embossing and bright light to medium lime green coloration.
A Washington bust and sailing frigate portrait flask (Albany Glass Works, N.Y., circa 1848-1850), sapphire blue with applied sloping collared mouth -- an exceptional pint.
A General Taylor bust and monumental portrait flask (“Fells Point/Balto”), made circa 1830-1850 by Baltimore Glass Works, puce with gray overtone, extremely rare.
A Washington classical bust portrait flask (Bridgeton Glass Works, N.J. circa 1840-1860), yellow with a topaz tone, very rare, with beautiful color and strong embossing.
A Log Cabin “Hard Cider” historical flask with barrel and plow graphics (Pittsburgh, circa 1820-1840), brilliant light blue-green, a great bottle in