Selections from the extraordinary collection of the late Malcolm S. Forbes, lovingly displayed in the Forbes Galleries
in New York for more than a quarter century, will be offered in a href="http://www.ha.com" target="_blank">Heritage Auctions' "The Gentleman Collector" auction, in Dallas, on June 1.
"The Forbes 'Mortality of Immortality' assortment of more than 100 extraordinary objects form the core of 'The Gentleman Collector' auction," said Nick Dawes, Vice President of Special Collections at Heritage, "The balance of the auction comprises a selection of walking canes from two private California collections, a private European collection of French boxes from the Louis XVI and Empire periods, ocean liner memorabilia from a private East Coast collection, a fine collection of vintage motoring mascots, a large private collection of historic golfing memorabilia and selected gentleman's luxury accessories."
The Forbes collection is heavily focused on Victorian Britain, including civilian and military trophies and awards presented throughout the British Empire and memorabilia of largely forgotten events, endeavors and heroes.
Mr. Forbes combined his excellent eye with an acute attachment to history, viewing the objects as a personal time machine, ready and able to transport those who choose to be transported by them to a specific fragment of the past.
"If you want to visit a sedate game of bowls in Scotland in 1867, an East London darts match in 1949, or be thrown into the heart of the fighting on the Western Front in 1917," said Dawes, "then the Forbes collection holds something for you."
On the same day, a Signature auction of Decorative Arts and Design will feature the Malcolm S. Forbes Collection of Cartier Botanical Ornaments, made in gold and hard stones in the Faberge tradition in the 1960s. Most were displayed at the Forbes Galleries until last year, and were previously housed in Mr. Forbes' private office above the Galleries in the Forbes building on New York's lower Fifth Avenue.
Highlights of the entire "Gentleman Collector" auction include, but are not limited to:
Souvenir Chess piece, made from a section of Transatlantic Cable: Produced to commemorate the game played between the British Parliament and the U.S. House of Representatives over the cable in 1897. From the Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $3,000+.
George III silver trophy cup and cover: Presented by 'Respectable Inhabitants of the City of Oxford' in 1815. Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $1,500+.
Commemorative Wooden Ladle: Presented by the Royal Engineers on the Western Front in 1917. Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $800+.
Silver Medallion awarded to Malcolm Campbell at Saltburn, Yorkshire Speed Trials in 1922: Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $700+.
George V silver cigarette box: Presented by the 'Ancient Order of Froth Blowers' in 1927: Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $700+.
George V Silver Boxing Trophy: Presented in France by the British Expeditionary Force in 1919. Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimate: $700+.
Victorian Scottish Silver Bowls Award: Presented in Glasgow, 1867. Malcolm S. Forbes Collection. Estimated: $400+.
Louis XVI Gold and Tortoiseshell Box: From a private European collection of French boxes. Estimate: $2,500+.
Louis XVI Gold and Tortoise Shell Snuff Box presented by Lord Forbes in Scotland in 1820: The box with poincons circa 1780, tested as 18 karat gold. Lid interior with gold plaque engraved to John Smith as a presentation from Lord Forbes, 1820. John Smith (1781-1852) was a renowned Scottish architect responsible for many of the finer granite buildings in the city of Aberdeen. Estimate: $1500+.
Original Souvenir Life Belts for Sister Ships Titanic and Olympic, the only Recorded Pair: From a Private Collection of Ocean Liner Memorabilia. An extraordinary matched pair depicting the sister ships in hand painted panels. Estimate: $12,000+.
Victorian Ivory Bulldog Cane: From a large collection of Period Canes. Estimate: $600+.
Georges Potivin Silvered Bronze Art Deco Lion Automobile Mascot, circa 1925: From a large collection of French automobile mascots. Estimate: $6,000+.
American Silver plated Golfing Cocktail Service designed by George Berry, circa 1926: From a large private collection of Vintage Golfing Objects. Estimate: $10,000+.