Corcoran family heirlooms will be sold at auction
A number of historical items relating to Wexford will be up for auction tomorrow (Wednesday) in Kilkenny.
Fonsie Mealy Auctioneer is presiding over an auction comprising 800 lots at his auction rooms in Castlecomer.
This fascinating sale will include items from the Corcoran Family Collection of the Wexford Free Press; items formerly housed at Dromoland Castle (The O’Brien family); the bijou collection from the renowned Dublin antique dealer Jane Williams who owned the iconic corner shop opposite Dail Eireann and collections from other private estates.
There are a number of outstanding Killarney wood pieces for sale and the highlight of these being an important Irish Victorian Exhibition Killarney work Arbutus over sized Davenport Desk, purchased by the Corcoran Family of the Wexford Free Press at the Great Exhibition of Manufacturers, Machinery and Fine Arts, 1864 at the Royal Dublin Society.
This has come to auction for the first time by direct family descent with an estimate of €7,000 and €9,000.
This exceptional piece demonstrates how extraordinarily elaborate the craftsmanship is. Killarney wood furniture is used to depict certain familiar buildings in the Killarney area, such as Muckross Abbey, Ross Castle and Glena Cottage, plus emblems regarded as traditionally Irish - the shamrock, round towers, wolfhounds and harps.
Other items of Wexford interest include an important large 19th Century Arts and Crafts Fire Surround and Overmantel, possibly by W.B. Simpson & Son.
The overmantel has carved decorative finials and has a large central mirror panel flanked by pillar supported shelves with mirror backs and gilt decoration, on a moulded shelf over a surround with decorative carved sides in relief depicting flowers, the frieze with seven colourful hand painted tiles by Minton & Co., depicting figures playing various instruments, and two similarly decorated standards. Each is inset with large tiles either side probably designed by Walter Crane, with a central carved marble inset, approximately 326cms in height x 183cms width.
With a guide price of between €4,000 and €6,000 its provenance is also from the Corcoran family.
Similarly a rare and important set of five James Shoolbred and Co. Hall Chairs, with decorative brass mounts, moulded seats, baluster spindle gallery on reeded sabre legs, bears stamp with registration number are from the Corcoran family. One of the chairs lacks a brass gallery. They too have a guide price of between €4,000 and €6,000.
Also owned by the Corcoran family was a large Victorian ebonised serpentine shaped inlaid and ormolu mounted Credenza. The inlaid frieze over central panel doors with oval floral decoration is flanked either side by glazed doors, on a shaped plinth and ormolu mounted base, approx. It has a guide price of between €800 and €1,200.
A set of heavy circular metal wastepaper bins decorated with green malachite design, an old Whiskey jar and a trousers press have a guide price of between €80 and €120.
From the collection of Wexford’s Corcoran (of Free Press fame): Top left, set of five James Shoolbred & Co hall chairs, estimated at €4,000 to €6,000; above, left, Victorian ebonised serpentine shaped inlaid and ormolu mounted Credenza, with an estimate of €800 to €1,200; above, right, a Victorian ebonised serpentine shaped 19th Century Arts & Crafts fire surround and overmantel, possibly by WB Simpson & Son, estimated at €4,000 to €6,000.
A Davenport desk by J. Egan Arbutus Works, purchased by the Corcoran family at the Exhibition of Manufacturers, Machinery of Fine Arts 1864 in the RDS. Guiding at €7,000 to €9,000.