Telephones spread the word

Author: Richard Brewster | Posted: 1st June, 2013

The old and unusual telephones are on display throughout Amanda Addams Auctions rooms at 344 High Street, Kew in readiness for Monday night’s auction, which begins at 6.30pm, and an immediate drawcard to all who enter.

They are testimony to the persevering skills of the late Fred Turner, who spent about 25 years building an eclectic collection of anything remotely scientific, mechanical or instrumental in nature including scales, projectors, microscopes, magic lanterns and telephones.

Fred died about 18 months ago and his wife Diane is slowly sorting out and selling the collection. In this sale are about 20 of the telephones, a magic lantern and various other items.

The earliest and pick of the telephones is a 1910 Edwardian wooden Postmaster General’s version built by SB & Co.

The others range from the traditional 1930s “candlestick” variety to an early 1980s “brick” mobile. The range includes Bakelite phones from the 1940s and 1950s to the popular Cobra and a 1970s push button version. There is even a 1980s telephone from a public phone box.

The collection also includes an 1880s magic lantern, miners lanterns and an early brass telescope.

The auction contains many other interesting items including a hand carved pedestal with brass jardinière incorporated, a Japanese jardinière/incense holder and an 1890s arts and craft hallstand.

Among the paintings on offer is Albert Tucker’s “Sunset Landscape with Parrot”, John Dent’s “From the Balcony 1987” and Adam Cullen’s “Playtime 2003”.

The auction has a good selection of Japanese mid-20th century Cloisonné vases and art glass featuring Lalique and early Desna. There also are several Austrian and Australian bronzes from 1900 to the 1940s.

Buyers should be intrigued by the jewellery collection, which includes a ladies Cartier watch and a Japanese silver mandolin-shaped salt and peppershaker set from London-based Silver Vaults Company.

Another fascinating item is the unusual and rare Liberty Tudric pewter tea service and tray complete with tea and coffee pots, water jug and jam pot or sugar bowl.

Card collectors will be delighted at the 1930s Australian Rules football card collection featuring scenes from historic matches.

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