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Charles Rohlfs chair rescued from garbage, sells for $198,000

1009pow_rolhfs_2 Nina West writes at

A rare Arts & Crafts chair made by Charles Rolhfs and rescued from the trash made auction history last week. Expected to fetch around $30,000, it sold for the record price of $198,000.

Pulled from the neighbor's trash, the chair was given an insurance value of $25,000 by Sam Cottone, president of Cottone Auctions, outside of Rochester, N.Y., 10 or 15 years ago. The auctioneer's advice to the owner was to take good care of it, since its value would appreciate significantly over time. The owner, living in a trailer home, decided earlier this year that it was time to sell the chair.

Cottone advertised the chair with the low estimate of $30,000 to $50,000 in hopes of creating good auction buzz. The battle for the chair among 10 phone bidders and multiple floor bidders was won by a Washington, D.C., antiques dealer. It is unclear if he purchased the chair on behalf of a private client or for his own store inventory.

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