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Popular Culture

Florida Water 1904

Victorian Files: Murray and Lanman Florida Water

When you think of florida water, you probably think of beautiful beaches, warm sand between your toes, perhaps a certain Spring Break where you had a bit too much fun in the sun?  But during the nineteenth century, florida water was the ultimate high class fragrance.  While perfumes and colognes were discouraged for their overbearing […]

The Mad Men Art of Japan in Bertram Cooper’s Office

Once widely collected, but today rarely appearing on people’s homes, Japanese woodblock prints can be seen lining the walls of the old office of senior partner Bertram “Bert” Cooper, (played  Robert Morse) in seasons one through four of the television series Mad Men. Woodblock printing is one of the oldest techniques of creating prints dating back […]
Bunny with eggs

Collecting Folklore: The Easter Bunny

As a child, I always wondered how the Easter bunny knew that my favorite candy was chocolate malted eggs, and regularly left more than enough in my basket. (Really I think he was leaving enough for family to eat their fair share well)  As an adult, the Easter bunny rarely makes an appearance at my […]

Kitsch at Auction: A Case Study

On June 22, 1964, the Supreme Court judges handed down a decision on the case of Jacobellis v. Ohio.  The question at hand was whether to uphold or reverse the lower court’s decision that the film The Lovers was pornographic and could thus be censored under obscenity laws.  In the concurring opinion Justice Potter Stewart […]

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss! National Read Across America Day

Imagine my surprise when I stopped at Google today and did not find a Google Doodle tribute to Dr. Seuss as they customarily do for famous and beloved authors. Born March 2nd, 1904, Theodor Seuss Geisel, he is best know by the pen name Dr. Seuss. He would author 46 children’s books throughout his career […]
Patent 1

From Mad Men to My Mother-in Law: Mid-Century Hoop Chairs

By Renee Corbino My husband and I had dinner with my in-laws the other night, and as soon as we arrived my mother in-law shared this article with me, about a pair of chairs that she had submitted to The Washington Post for advice on restoring them.  She referred to them as olive chairs, and […]
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You Want to Set a Table Like Betty Draper? You can, and its cheap too!

By Renee Corbino You’re ready to host a formal dinner for a special occasion and you want to throw it Mad Men style?  Betty Draper in Season 2, Episode 8, titled “A Night to Remember” throws a formal dinner party for  several of Don’s business partners.  Her table is exquisitely set with fine china, silver, […]
flea market

“Antiques Roadshow Effect” and a Flea-Market Renoir

You may have heard the story: A lucky woman finds a painting with a gold frame in a box of goods at a remote flea market in Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia.  She purchases the whole lot for $7.  The painting slides around in the back of her car for a while.  It spends a stint […]

A Brief History of the Vince Lombardi Trophy by Tiffany & Co.

In honor of the Super Bowl XLVII here is a brief history of the Vince Lombardi Trophy The Baltimore Ravens just took home the fabled Vince Lombari Trophy tonight with their 34-31 point victory over the San Francisco 49\’ers in Super Bowl XLVII. Before I was in the auction business, Tiffany & Co. had a […]
Groundhog Postcard

It’s Groundhog Day! The Furry Weather Predictor in Popular Culture

By Renee Corbino Every year on February 2nd, in Gobblers Knob, an area just outside of the little town of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, people gather to watch men dressed in 19th-century garb hold aloft an unassuming and probably sleepy groundhog and proclaim whether or not it sees its shadow.   If the ground hog sees its […]