A timely auction for pub memorabilia and collectibles
The simple pleasure of supping a creamy pint of stout, perched at the bar may seem like a distant memory as the dregs of lockdown lingers like stale cigarette smoke. However, on August 10 the pubs are due to reopen their doors - and just days later an online auction held at Victor Mee's will focus on pub life in the good old days.
Described as an "exquisite Irish Pub Memorabilia & Collectibles sale" it will feature lots including early 20th century whiskey bottles, rare advertising figures, signs and mirrors, motoring memorabilia and Irish football memorabilia.
“The rare lots set to appear in the auction have been handpicked by our specialist team and have been waiting in the wings ready to hit the auction block,” Victor Mee said.
Knowledgable on Irish whiskey, the team at Victor Mee Auctions have been trusted to sell many bottles in recent years. Estimated to sell between €6,000 and €12,000 is lot 248, a rare bottle of George Roe Irish Whiskey.
The George Roe brand was over 170 years old when its Thomas Street Distillery closed in 1923. It reportedly took a few years before everything was bottled and sold and this 16-year-old release of George Roe seems to have been produced for export to the USA in the 1930s. Remarkably, the label proclaims it to be "pot still malt whiskey", making this an incredibly rare Irish single malt distilled before 1923 at a distillery that has been closed for nearly a century.
Victor Mee Auctions will also welcome a 1950s bottle of John Jameson Extra Quality Dublin Whiskey to the auction block as well as a rare 19th century copper whiskey still, with both items estimated to sell up to €1,200.
The upcoming Irish sale also boasts a wide range of highly sought after advertising pieces in the forms of figurines, mirrors, enamel signs and decorative structures. A stand-out lot in the upcoming sale is lot 348, Presse’s Nunns Island Galway Whiskey advertising mirror. This mirror is one of the rarest Victor has ever come across and is estimated to sell at auction for a significant sum of €6,000 to €12,000.
Within the advertising offering is lot 338, an extremely rare mahogany count Irish tobacco advertising cabinet with reverse painted glass pediment. The T.P. & R. Goodbody cigarette cabinet is one of few known still to be on the market in such pristine condition. This Irish advertising cabinet has been estimated to sell at auction between €3,000 and €4,000.
Another piece coming to auction is a J Vint & Son Ltd Old Irish Whiskey glass advertisement. Estimated to sell up to €3,000 this unbelievably rare item has yet to be seen on the market and is guaranteed to be a crowd favourite.
Iconically Irish is lot 55, a 1960s Guinness Ruberoid advertising Leprechaun seated on a wooden stool. This particular leprechaun was used as a mascot for Guinness delivery drivers both in Ireland and USA to advertise the stout to the overseas market and has come to the auction house with a steel vehicle roof mount attachment. It is likely that this advertising piece like others similar is well travelled and may have been as far as the shores of the USA and may get that far again, as this is sure to be a lot of interest with Guinness collectors worldwide.
Football and hurling lovers and collectors will have the chance to bid on three unique advertising figurines, set to sell between €200 to €450 each at auction. The figurines include rare ‘Please on All Grounds’ Kerry and Galway footballers and a Hurling Player.
“Whether you’re in the market for a fine whiskey, something to add to a sporting collection or a one-off advertising mirror, you are sure to find what you’re looking for in our Irish Pub Memorabilia & Collectibles sale,” said Victor Mee.
The one-day online sale gets underway at 2pm on Wednesday, August 12.