Catafalque – definition


Catafalque comes from the Italian word catafalco, which means scaffolding. It is the term used for a bier or platform that supports a coffin, and catafalques are often, although not always, moveable. In the United States, the most iconic example of a catafalque is the Lincoln Catafalque, which was created for Lincoln’s funeral in 1865. This pine platform covered with black cloth remains in the Exhibition Hall at the U.S. Capitol’s visitor center, [...] Click here to continue reading.

Major Richard Kidder Meade, Jr.

Additional items accompanying the personal archive of Major Richard Kidder Meade, Jr., CSA, (Brunk Auctions, sale of 16 July 2011, lot 527).


- Hand-sewn brown satin weave silk drawstring bag lined with maroon silk, embroidered with the first national flag of the Confederacy (“Stars and Bars”, 13 stars) and the second national flag of the Confederacy (“the Stainless Banner”) and the motto Pro Aris et Focis – literally “for our altars and our [...] Click here to continue reading.

Archive of Colonel Joseph C. Audenried – provenance note

Archive of Colonel Joseph C. Audenried

Born into a well to do Philadelphia family, Joseph C. Audenried (1839-1880) enjoyed a privileged seat at the table of history. Handsome, intelligent, and supremely efficient, he made the most of his innate talents and good fortune as he built a truly unique career, becoming one of the most trusted members of the staff of Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman.

A career military man, Audenried graduated 17th in [...] Click here to continue reading.

20th Century Limited Train

The 20th Century Limited

In the 1930′s when technology began to reflect the sleek, aerodynamic lines of the Art Deco movement, the new 20th Century Limited train, designed by Henry Dreyfus, was the pride of the New York Central Line, running from New York to Chicago in sixteen hours.

Poore, Benjamin Perley – Writer & Antique Collector

Benjamin Perley Poore

Benjamin Perley Poore (1820 to 1887) was a significant early collector of American antiques. A writer by trade, Poore was born near Newbury, Massachusetts to parents Benjamin and Mary Perley Poore. The family estate called Indian Hill became the showcase for his eclectic assemblage of antiques.

As a youth Poore was influenced by trips to Europe and was especially fascinated by the old Scottish castles and manor houses. He later sought [...] Click here to continue reading.

Moll, Herman – Mapmaker

Herman Moll (1654?-1732)

Perhaps England’s greatest early 18th century map publisher, Herman Moll was a Dutch native who moved to London to work as an engraver circa 1680. Moll was one of the first mapmakers to use London as the prime meridian for longitude. The Crown used his “Map of North America” and his 1715 “A New and Exact Map of the Dominions of the King of Great Britain on ye Continent of North [...] Click here to continue reading.

Kennedy, John Fitzgerald

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Born 1917, died 1963. 35th President of the United States. The youngest man (43 years old) ever to be elected President and the fourth to be assassinated, on November 22, 1963.

Homann, Johann & Homann Heirs – German Mapmakers

Johann Baptist Homann

Johann Homann (1663 to 1724) and heirs are acknowledged to be the most important German map publishing firm of the 18th century, having supplanted the Dutch cartography which dominated the 17th century.

The Homann firm was founded in Nurnberg about 1702. Soon after publishing his first atlas in 1707, the founder became a member of the Berlin Academy of Sciences and, in 1715, he was appointed Geographer to Emperor Charles VI.

[...] Click here to continue reading.

Gutta Percha – definition

Gutta Percha

Gutta percha is defined as a tough plastic substance made from the latex of several Malaysian trees (generally Payena and Palaquium) of the sapodilla family that resembles rubber but contains more resin, and is used especially as insulation and in dentistry.

Flagg, James Montgomery – American Artist – Uncle Sam

James Montgomery Flagg (1877 to 1960)

James Montgomery Flagg, born in Pelham Manor, New York in 1877, is one of those interesting figures in history who actually did so much, but is only remembered for one thing! Flagg was a gifted artist, displaying a prodigy’s talent; he created his first magazine illustration at age 12, and by the age of 14, he had become a regular contributor to Life. He actively pursued training for [...] Click here to continue reading.

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