Sully lithograph of George Washington just one of many
Published: Saturday, August 3, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 12:03 p.m.
Q: This print was hanging at my grandparent's house since the 1940s. It has not been reframed as far as I know. I know you cannot see in detail the quality or authenticity of the print, but my husband and I would like to know if its value is worth pursuing. A few details are listed below: It appears to have been framed by Jvliv G. Haas Frames and Prints, Est 1897. Below, from what I can decipher, is the information printed at the bottom of the print. "Washington Passing the Delaware, Evening previous to the Battle of Trenton, December 25, 1776," Painted by T. Sully Philadelphia, Published by Samuel Augustus Mitchell, May 20, 1825. Etched by W. Humphrys. Engraved by G.S. Lang, Printed by B. Rogers, Entered according to Act of Congress May 20, 1825. The actual print is approximately 17½ inches by 14¼ inches.
— P.G., Gainesville
A: There were numerous printing companies that made copies of the works of Thomas Sully, 1738-1872, one of the famous portrait artists in America. The copy you have is likely a hand-colored lithograph. Potential dollar value is $50 to $150.
Q: I inherited an oak cabinet several years ago, and always thought it was an oak display case. Last week, a visitor to my home suggested that this was probably a medical or plant specimen cabinet. I am hoping that you can tell me what it is and the value of the item.
— A.A., Internet
A: You have a vitrine, having a clear glass door, side and top used to display curios or other items of interest. The photograph is not clear enough to give you an idea of age and quality. All I can say, based on the photo, is dollar value is less than $1,000.
Q: I have two letters hand-signed by J. Edgar Hoover. Could you tell me their monetary worth or value?
— A.W., Internet
A: You have not mentioned what the J. Edgar Hoover, 1895–1972, letters are about, so I will assume they are generic, and not important relative to his history at the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Potential dollar value is $100 each, short of a lucky day.
Q: My dad was stationed in Wiesbaden in the early 1950s. I started school there so it has been a while. I have three paintings, one large and two smaller, by H. Wagner. The pictures have come loose from the frame. They are on canvas. The paint was put on heavy, not smooth! Some of the paint has flicked off the paintings. I do not know if I should keep hanging on [to them] or just trash them.
— K.B., Internet
A: There are many artists and sculptors with the name H. Wagner. Without the first name, it is not possible to help. Take a look at the back of the paintings for any information about the artist or title of the pictures. Then, take several good photographs of the paintings, and perhaps I can help you.
John Sikorski is an Ocala antiques dealer. He hosts a call-in radio show, "Sikorski's Attic,'' on WUFT-FM (89.1 FM). It can be heard each Saturday from noon to 1 p.m. Send your questions to Sikorski's Attic, c/o The Gainesville Sun, 2700 SW 13th St., Gainesville, FL 32608-2015; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.