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updated: 10/19/2013 4:55 PM

Antiques show in St. Charles a glimpse into American past

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  • Barb Lemme, owner of Liberty Tree Antiques in Glen Ellyn, folds up one of several quilts she had on display at the 39th annual Fox Valley Antiques Show at the Kane County Fairgrounds on Saturday. The one-of-a-kind stuffed quilt behind her dates from the 1860s or 1870s. The fruit is stuffed with cotton and applied to the quilt. Lemme has been an exhibitor at the show for several years.

       Barb Lemme, owner of Liberty Tree Antiques in Glen Ellyn, folds up one of several quilts she had on display at the 39th annual Fox Valley Antiques Show at the Kane County Fairgrounds on Saturday. The one-of-a-kind stuffed quilt behind her dates from the 1860s or 1870s. The fruit is stuffed with cotton and applied to the quilt. Lemme has been an exhibitor at the show for several years.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • A cast-iron deer statue dating from 1880 by a New York City foundry stands on display in Mario Pollo's booth (from Holliston, Mass.) at the 39th annual Fox Valley Antiques Show at the Kane County Fairgrounds. Fifty-five dealers from 17 states participate in the show, which is by invitation only and continues Sunday.

       A cast-iron deer statue dating from 1880 by a New York City foundry stands on display in Mario Pollo's booth (from Holliston, Mass.) at the 39th annual Fox Valley Antiques Show at the Kane County Fairgrounds. Fifty-five dealers from 17 states participate in the show, which is by invitation only and continues Sunday.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

 
 

A hand-hammered copper pot here, a mortar-and-pestle set there. "One day you turn around and you realize you are a collector," said Wheaton resident Jim Hoff, shortly after buying a $70 copper pot at the Fall Fox Valley Antiques Show Saturday.

Hoff and wife Maureen Murphy were at the show at the Kane County Fairgrounds in St. Charles looking for items to help fill a new addition to their home. It was their first visit to the annual show, now in its 39th year.

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Murphy is intrigued by copper pieces because of a "ratty old kettle" she spied in a cabinet alongside her mother's Lladro figurines. She recalled asking her mother why she had it and learned its story.

Murphy's great-great grandparents were living in Chicago at the time of the big fire in 1871 and knew their house was going to burn down. Before running to safety in Lake Michigan, they buried a copper teakettle in the yard. It was scorched, but it survived.

Antiques dealer Jim Bennett found the pot Jim Hoff would buy at an estate sale near Peru, Ill. He estimated it was made in the late 19th century.

Items offered for sale by the 55 dealers at the show included the usual furniture, jewelry, art and dishware. You could spend $12 to get a copy of "Up Front With Bill Mauldin," by the Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper cartoonist who chronicled life among soldiers during World War II.

A pair of leather-and-metal hinged leg braces were available. And for $4,475, you could take home a sampler embroidered by Christian Sinclair, likely in the late 1700s.

The show continues from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in the main exhibition building at the fairgrounds, west of Randall Road and north of Route 38 in St. Charles. It is run by the Chicago Suburban Antiques Dealers Association.

Admission is $8, with proceeds going to the DuPage County Historical Museum Foundation.

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