The Peter Chillingworth Auction

Unreserved On-Site Sale On Oct. 18, 19, And 20 To Be Held By Amelia Jeffers And Frio, Stack And Associates

October 5, 2018

After 57 years in the antiques business, Peter Chillingworth and his wife, Kathryn (Cappy), are ready for a change that includes selling the contents of Peter Chillingworth Antiques and their private collection at an unreserved auction on-site at their farm in Scenery Hill, Pa. The two-day sale will take place Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Oct. 18, 19, and 20. Close friend, Amelia Jeffers of Columbus, Ohio, formerly of Garth’s Auctioneers and Appraisers, will be handling the 1,300-plus lot auction.
“It is such an honor to be approached by Peter and Cappy to conduct this auction,” said Jeffers. “The Chillingworths are longtime friends, and I can’t imagine many more exciting reasons to jump onboard an auction than this. As everyone in the business knows, Peter has wonderful things, is an icon in the Americana world as both a dealer and successful show manager. That he is offering a serious and extensive collection on-site and absolute just translates into a fantastic opportunity to engage.”
“I had a great interest in antiques from a young age thanks to my mother. I started out portering for her in my teens when she managed a much-loved antique show held for years at the Episcopalian Church in Indiana, Pa.,” explained Chillingworth. “When I got out of school, and in an effort to seek approval from my future father-in-law, I took a job at JC Penney in management. I lasted about 18 months before I decided I did not want to retire as a JC Penney associate. So with my wife’s permission, and because she had steady income as a school teacher, I left Penney’s and opened an antique shop in March of 1961.”
Though Peter Chillingworth Antiques has never closed, it did move. “We lived in the village of Scenery Hill for 27 years, and the shop was in our home for 25 of those. In 1986, we bought our 19-acre homestead on the outskirts of town, and after restoring the buildings, including the 1859 Federal style home, we moved our shop to the property,” added Chillingworth.
“We will offer online (via invaluable and auctionzip), phone, and absentee bidding, but those lucky enough to attend the auction in person are in for a treat,” stated Jeffers. “Peter has been a student and a champion not only for antiques, in general, but for preserving historic and decorative objects of Western Pennsylvania. From regional vine-inlaid furniture to silver, glass, and artwork, it just did not make sense to pull these objects out of their native region,” explained Jeffers on the choice to conduct an on-site auction. Jeffers continued, “Jim Frio and Shane Stack (personal friends and auction veterans) from nearby Wheeling have signed on to help run the auction. I simply could not have gotten it done alone; their help sealed the deal.” A full-color, printed catalog is currently in production, and a website created for the auction,, is in place.
The Friday session will focus on workshop and barn contents of antique furniture and smalls, as well as early tools, including a number of hand planes, a treadle lathe, and work benches. That evening, the Chillingworths and Jeffers crew will host a preview champagne party.
Items to be sold Saturday will be the Chillingworths’ collection and inventory. Expect the finest in Federal furniture, decorative arts, artwork, and everything in between. Several important regional tall case clocks include a rare Canonsburg, Pa., example by Alexander Cook. Cook was trained as a silversmith in Scotland. He settled in Harvard County, Md., prior to migrating to Canonsburg, Pa., and establishing himself as a silversmith and clockmaker.
A Western Pa., drop-front desk in original finish in untouched condition with vine inlay, ex. Charles Momchilov, and a fine Queen Anne trifed feet side chair from Philadelphia in original finish and untouched condition are among the highlights.
An extensive early glass collection will be sold. Interested in Western Pa., glass throughout his career, Chillingworth first started selling glass bottles to noted dealer Dr. Eller (a paleontologist), the uncle of the Tillou brothers. Among areas of interest and what will be sold is blown glass from the first 70 years of the 19th century, including glass from New Geneva (dates from 1797), New Geneva-type glass, predominantly aqua such as pitchers, tumblers, pans, bowls, flasks, bottles, flips, and vases.
Coin silver will focus on early 19th-century southwestern Pennsylvania makers. There will be 16th-, 17th-, and 18th-century brass candlesticks; early china including delft, Leeds, and canary; a large selection of Liverpool pitchers and Historical Staffordshire transferware with Pittsburgh views.
The vast artwork will feature a collection of Western Pennsylvania art highlighted by oil-on-canvas landscapes by George Hetzel and W.C. Wall and a stunning Malcolm Parcell portrait, “The Reader” (exhibited in The Carnegie International in 1934). Other artists whose work will be represented are Emil Blott (Beaver County), Dorothy Davids, Aaron Gorson, A. Bryan Wall, John Donaghy, Milan Petrovits, Xanthus Smith, David Hannah, Clifford Adams Bayard, John W. Flender, Vincent Nesbert, G. Hunter, Frank Melega, and Jacob Maentel, among others.
Chillingworth will continue to serve as show manager for the long-standing Brandywine River Museum of Art Antiques Show in Chadds Ford, Pa., and the Oglebay Institute’s Annual Antiques Show and Sale (held at the Institute’s Wilson Lodge) in Wheeling, W.Va.
“I’ve come to the realization that it is time to move on,” said Chillingworth. “I will still be buying and selling antiques, but on a limited basis.” The couple plans to retain enough of their current modestly valued things to furnish either an apartment or small house, but all of the Chillingworths’ private collections will be sold at the auction.
“We are especially pleased that Amelia will be taking care of the selling for us, and we look forward to it being a wonderful weekend of seeing old friends and sharing favorite memories,” added Chillingworth.
The Peter Chillingworth Auction will be held at their farm, located at 1416 Daniels Run Road, Scenery Hill, Pa.
Terms will be a 10-percent buyer’s premium on Friday (15-percent online) and a 15-percent buyer’s premium on Saturday (20-percent online). There will be a 3-percent fee for credit cards. Online bidding will be provided by and
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