Lifetime collection of phonographs, gramophones and radios to go under the hammer

Author: Richard Brewster | Posted: 21st March, 2016

Being given responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the in house gramophone at his parent’s café at age 12 led to a lifetime obsession with the music player for 84-year-old Nick Raftopoulos.

Nick was born on the island of Ithaca, Greece in January 1922 and migrated with his family to Australia in 1934.

They settled in the northern Victorian town Merbein where his parents opened a café and Nick grew so attached to the gramophone that he brought it with him when the family relocated to Melbourne in 1939.

He has since spent much of his life and travels searching for rare gramophones to add to his collection.

Other collectors will now be able to take advantage of Nick’s extensive collection when it goes under the hammer as part of Mossgreen’s last Quarterly Collectors Auction from 10am Monday March 21 at 926-930 High Street, Armadale.

The collection includes an Edison Model D cylinder phonograph with an impressive polygonal horn and stand and an Edison tabletop cylinder phonograph in an oak case.

There are various other portable gramophones by different makers and an Edison home phonograph with a large brass and black painted horn on a stand.

The collection also includes several old radios including two Fisk Radiolette AWA (Fret and Foot and Empire State) models.

Nick also has a fine Capodimonte Italian porcelain Royal carriage and horses in a purpose built timber and glass display case in the auction.

Another auction attraction is the impressive gold Buddha in the late Sokuthai or early Ayutthaya style inlaid with coloured glass and showing Burmese influences.

Buyers should also be interested in the 1930s art deco cold painted bronze and ivory figured lamp of a banjo player and a Russian silver and enamel bowl possibly by Emeliyarn Kuznetsov in Moscow 1899-1908. 

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