Auction 113 Highlights

Welcome to Smalls Sale 113.

With this Sale we are returning to a weekly format where we will endeavour to post an Auction every Friday which will conclude on Sunday week giving you approximately 10 days to view and bid.

It is our intention to conduct mostly mixed sales which will include collectables across an array of themes.

In our current sale we have two very important pieces of Australiana in the form of mounted Emu eggs. The first is a lidded goblet by the renowned jeweller and silversmith William Edwards. The Englishman Edwards had arrived in Melbourne in July 1857 and set up his first workshop at 129 Collins Street. He advertised his special skills of making “sacrament services to order - Tea and Coffee sets (of) any design - Emu Eggs mounted - Race Cups (of) all sizes and design.” Edwards was a leading silversmith of his day and arguably the first to utilise mounted emu eggs in his works which he entered in the International Exhibition, 1861 and the International Colonial Exhibition, Melbourne, 1866. The second item is an impressive Colonial-era mounted Emu Egg on an ebonised wooden base which was presented in 1883 to Alexander Sutherland Esq by a grateful Henry Dale Edwards for kind services rendered. Although the work appears to be unattributed it is of a very high standard and would have stood proud as a table centrepiece.

Also on offer are a few treasures retrieved from the Royal Mail Steamer ‘Duoro’ which collided with the Spanish passenger liner 'Yrurac Bat' on the morning of the 2nd April 1882 off Cape Finisterre being sent to a watery grave. In the early 1990s, artifacts as well as over 28,000 gold sovereigns plus a quantity of unrefined gold that was held in the ship's safe was salvaged by treasure hunters. In our sale we have two 50-gram vials of high-carat Gold dust from the wreck as well as a concreted lump of the ship’s safe containing 14 visible gold sovereigns. For ship-wreck enthusiasts it is the ultimate treasure.

There are early ‘First Edition’ books covering the missionary voyage to the Southern Pacific Ocean by the Ship Duff in the years 1796, 1797 & 1798 and a narrative of the three world voyages by the explorer Amasa Delano between 1790 and 1810. The second book offers rare insights into the Captain Bligh and the Mutiny on the Bounty.

The small selection of War-era items is highlighted by a Japanese Samurai Sword in its original scabbard. Seventy-five years after the end of WWII these are becoming more difficult to acquire and this example which was souvenired by a returning Australian serviceman is a good example.

There is also a miniature Naval Cannon in Silver presented by the Maltese Government to the Australian Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies whilst he was enroute to the Commonwealth Prime Ministers' Conference in London in 1956.


There is iconic ‘Playboy’ memorabilia and boxing collectables relating to the great heavyweight boxer ‘Jack Johnston’ as well as a signed ‘Beatles’ photograph and an exclusive access pin which allowed the wearer to approach the great ‘Frank Sinatra’ without being accosted by his goons.


Our world banknote selection has several Turkish Specimen notes once part of the ‘State Ministry of Finance Collection.’ Collectors of Turkish banknotes will be well aware that these emergency WWI era notes that were printed by its ally Germany have usually only survived as tattered rags and so these specimens are in some cases the only examples extant that are complete and in relatively high grade.


We hope you enjoy our unique offering of collectables in our Sale.

Smalls Auctions