Upstairs, downstairs in The Big House

    Morristown Lattin House

    By Jimmy Rhatigan

    OUR internationally renowned local auctioneers, Fonsie Mealy hold what is dubbed a Big House two-day sale of 900 lots on July 10 and 11 at The Chatsworth Auction Rooms, Chatsworth Street, Castlecomer.

    The Mealy family will test your curiosity by guiding you through  some of our country’s more famous large homes of another time and offer you the contents, including some fantastic rare lots.

    This prestigious sale will include items formerly housed at Morristown Lattin, Naas, Kildare, Albert House, Sligo, an Irish American (Boston) Collection, Spire Hall, home of the Odlum family and select contents from other fine estates.

    Up for grabs will be family portraits, paintings, furniture and objets d’art.

    The auction opens with ‘The Family Silver’ including a rare 18th Century Irish Penal Chalice from the Mansfield family which they have had since the 1700s.

    Penal Laws were a series of laws imposed on Catholics in Ireland that excluded them from most public offices and prohibited them from celebrating Mass among others.

    Irish Silver features strongly.

    An important example is a George III Freedom Box presented by the King to The Hon Thomas Packenham for ‘Brave and Spirited Conduct’.

    There will be a vast array of jewellery, ranging in price from €5,000 to €30,000.

    If you are a George Washington fan, you can bid for a 19th century portrait of the one-time US President, €1000 to €1500 or a white marble portrait bust of George, €3,000 to €4,000.

    Irish furniture includes Lady Kildare’s Writing Desk, €800 to €200); and a profusely carved mahogany side table  carved with a boar’s head amidst vine leaves, grapes and branches, €3000 to €5000.

    For  vintage car aficionados there is a 1963 Morris Minor Saloon,  €2000 to €3000 and a rare Kingsbury Motor Blue Bird toy model car from the Mansfield Family collection with an estimate of * Famously driven by Malcolm Campbell to break the land speed record, €180 to €220.

    There is a large selection of Irish art from George William Russell, McKelvey, JB Yeats and Wilkes.

    George Fonsie Mealy, Director of Fonsie Mealy Auctioneers told The Reporter:  “We bring to the market an eclectic and diverse collection of important items giving a tangible insight into the upstairs, downstairs of yesteryear in the Big Country House.”