Silver (Circa 1800S) Ex. Bally Museum
Himmelsfurt Mine, Saxony, Germany
Large Cabinet, 18.0 x 4.0 x 3.0 cm
Ex. Eric Asselborn; Bally Museum; Brent Lockhart
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This majestic large silver specimen is both elegant in form for the collector and significant for its size and impact. Wires of this thickness and size are very rare survivors of the heyday of these famous silver mines, quite visually distinct from recent material that came out around 2000-2002 from a modern find in the old tunnels of the linked mines of this district. It was found in the 1800s and was in the Bally Museum in Switzerland by the early 1900s. With the dissolution of that museum, it then went into the major private collection of Eric Asselborn, and then to Brent Lockhart in 2010. The Munich Show organizers requested to borrow it for their show exhibits in 2013 themed "European Treasures." This silver also won the Best of Theme award for its size class, in 2015 at the TGMS show, for the theme of "Minerals of Western Europe." To win Best Cabinet sized mineral in the year of a theme like that, with so much competition, says something. In 2016, it was exhibited in Lockhart's Desautels-winning case at TGMS. This piece has style, not just size. It has such grace and presence, that the pictures simply do not convey it. The photos make it look spindly, when in person it conveys a much more robust feel. This is far beyond what you could normally expect to find on the market at any price (and yet, I think it is priced reasonably here, in all honesty) - a major piece, worthy of a top institution or collection.