Furniture with a hidden signature?


John Taylors, Louth
Antiques, Toys, Collectables, Jewellery & General, Tues 8th March, 10am

Golding Young, Bourne
Collective Sale, Wed & Thurs 2nd & 3rd March, 10am.
Toy, Transport & Automobilia Sale, Wed 23rd March, 10am
General Sale, Thurs 24th March, 10am

Golding Young, Grantham
Collective Sale, Wed & Thurs 9th & 10th March, 10am.

Golding Young, Lincoln
Collective Sale, Wed & Thurs 16th & 17th March, 10am.

Batemans of Stamford
Antiques and Specialist Collectors, Sat 5th March, 10am. The Art Sale – Pictures & Paintings, Fri 18th March, 4pm

Stamford Auction Rooms, Stamford
Contents of the Old Post Office, Cowbit, Antiques & Collectables, Sat 26th March, 10am.

Unique Auctions, Lincoln
Antiques, Collectors & General Auction, Sat & Sun 26th & 27th March, 9am.

Please refer to the websites of each company to see the most recent updates on auction details.

Words by:
William Gregory MRICS
Featured in:
March 2022

By William Gregory MRICS, Golding Young and Mawer.

At a recent valuation appointment in the south of the county, I found myself at the foot of an oak dining table trying to locate a small carving of a mouse.

In the present auction market this craftsman’s signature can make all the difference to value.
Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson was a master furniture maker from Kilburn in North Yorkshire. His hand crafted works can be identified by this special signature.

The company was very successful and continues to this day following Thompson’s death in 1955.

Others have also joined in the success, in the form of followers and previous apprentices of Thompson. This collective can be loosely described as the Yorkshire School of oak furniture makers.

The best known of the competition include Peter ‘Rabbitman’ Heap of Wetwang – a former apprentice of Mouseman; Thomas ‘Gnomeman’ Whittaker (1910-1991) who had his workshop in Whitby; and Colin ‘Beaverman’ Almack of Sutton-under-Whitestonecliffe. Several other makers include Alan ‘Acornman’ Granger, Robert ‘Wrenman’ Hunter and Albert ‘Eagleman’ Jeffrey.

These skilled furniture makers have certainly left their mark and the smallest of carved motifs can make a substantial difference to the auction price.

The illustrations show recent examples which have appeared at auction.

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