Forgotten finds fetch almost £20,000 at North auction

ITEMS discovered at two North East homes have fetched a total of almost £20,000 at auction.

The medals which belonged to Major Norman Batey Pigg

ITEMS discovered at two North East homes have fetched a total of almost £20,000 at auction.

An American silver ice bowl produced to commemorate the US purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867 sold for £6,600 at Anderson and Garland’s Newcastle auction rooms.

Just 10.5 inches long and designed as an iceberg with icicles and textured frosting, the bowl features two polar bears on the handles at either end.

Found in a house in Darras Hall, Ponteland, it was released by the US-based Gorham Manufacturing Company around 1870 to mark the Alaskan deal.

Gorham was founded in 1831 and has frequently been used by the White House for special commissions.

One of its most famous commissions was from the family of George W. Bush, who chose Gorham’s Chantilly as the flatware service for Air Force One.

Julian Thomson, director at Anderson and Garland, said: “When it was found it was completely black and tarnished, but from the marks evidently a significant find and cleaned up beautifully.”

Two paintings were put up for sale by a Sunderland vendor at Boldon Auction Galleries after spending the last 60 years wrapped in newspaper in a loft.

The paintings are by Edgar Hunt, who was born in 1876 and was one of the most accomplished animal and bird painters who is best known for his farmyard scenes.

One of the paintings, of pigeons feeding, sold at Boldon for £3,200 and the other, of hens in a farmyard, made £9,400.

Also at Boldon, seven medals awarded to Major Norman Batey Pigg, who was born in Seaham in County Durham and who fought in both world wars, fetched £14,000 – three times the pre-sale estimate.

The medals had been estimated at between £3,000 and £5,000.

They included a First World War Military Cross and Distinguished Service Order, both awarded for conspicuous gallantry in action.

A brass toilet door sign for the Chief Constable of Sunderland sold for £35, also at Boldon.

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