Author Topic: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20  (Read 3471 times)

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Offline slw

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Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« on: April 19, 2006, 03:44:14 PM »
Olga's prayer book is to be auctioned at Swann Gallery in New York on April 20.  The auction begins at 10:30 New York time.  Sale 2075 Lot 67.
http://swanngalleries.rfcsystems.com/asp/fullCatalogue.asp?salelot=2075++++++67+&refno=++570493
You can bid by phone or online (I think), but you need to register first.
I've seen this book and it is stunningly beautiful.

ferngully

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2006, 04:12:14 PM »
if i were russian orthodox and fairly wealthy, i would love to buy that! that is something very precious and unique. how did they get hold of it i wonder? thanks for the link :)

Offline Ra-Ra-Rasputin

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2006, 04:36:21 PM »
Wow...what a wonderful object.  I wonder where it came from?

I don't know if I'd want to own something of the IF's.  It would freak me out a bit...though, if I happened to have a spare $2000 lying around, I might be tempted...;)

Rachel
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Princess_Olishka

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2006, 05:50:46 PM »
Wow, I wish I could have it (but that what be completely impossible!)! And I agree with you, Rachel - if I brought something that belonged to the IF, I would get freaked out while thinking of their haunting, dark and mysterious murder in Ekaterinburg. But, as I love Olga so much, I wonder if she would want anyone to buy her prayer book...

Offline pookiepie

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2006, 02:34:52 AM »
it seems kind of wrong that a ton of their stuff is scattered all over the world.

Offline Ortino

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2006, 05:43:14 PM »
If anyone's interested, the final price for the prayer book was $8,500. I wanted to place a bid, but the stupid site didn't send me my customer number and PIN number in time to place one.  >:(

Offline Ra-Ra-Rasputin

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2006, 05:51:51 PM »
Whoa! Thanks for the update, Ortino!

Sorry you didn't get to bid, but at that price someone with a lot of money to burn must have won.  

You know I hope it went to a museum or some sort of public organisation where it can be seen and appreciated by a lot of people, and keep her memory alive.  I would imagine that would be something Olga would have wanted.

Rachel
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Offline Ortino

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2006, 06:07:31 PM »
Quote

You know I hope it went to a museum or some sort of public organisation where it can be seen and appreciated by a lot of people, and keep her memory alive.  I would imagine that would be something Olga would have wanted.

Rachel
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Yes, I hope that it went to a place where it can be properly looked after and seen by lots of people. I didn't actually expect to win the auction, but I can only imagine the elation of owning an actual prayer book used by Olga! The simple fact that it had a Russian handwritten inscription convinced me to attempt to bid. Although I know what would have happened if I had miraculously won--my parents would never have let me leave it lying around the house and it probably would have been locked away somewhere.  :(

Frankly, I'm shocked that it went for so little. I expected that something that rare and authentic would be worth tens of thousands of dollars. Most of the other books in the auction were original scientific or philosophical manuscripts, and I believe one sold for $160,000.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Ortino »

Offline slw

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2006, 06:32:36 PM »
The book sold for $8,500.
Now I can reveal that I am - or was - the owner.  I posted the notice yesterday hoping someone with a love for the family would buy the book.
I used to collect English prayer books and this was offered to me about 10 years ago.  Because of its beauty and signficance I bought it.  I have no idea how it came to America, but I heard one good theory.  Right after the revolution an Anmerican doctor went to Russia with the intent of buying up Russian relgious items.  The Bosheviks had not interest in them but did need hard currency, so he managed to amass quite a large collection.  This doctor, whose name I don't know, died in the late 1960s and his estate auctioned off the items.  It is possible that Olga's prayer book was a aprt of this collection.  Who knows?  I'm sure whoever bought it will keep make sure it is well cared for.  Maybe it was even bought by someone who wants to return it to Russia.  I hope so.

Offline Ortino

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2006, 08:15:42 PM »
Quote
The book sold for $8,500.
Now I can reveal that I am - or was - the owner.  I posted the notice yesterday hoping someone with a love for the family would buy the book.
I used to collect English prayer books and this was offered to me about 10 years ago.  Because of its beauty and signficance I bought it.  I have no idea how it came to America, but I heard one good theory.  Right after the revolution an Anmerican doctor went to Russia with the intent of buying up Russian relgious items.  The Bosheviks had not interest in them but did need hard currency, so he managed to amass quite a large collection.  This doctor, whose name I don't know, died in the late 1960s and his estate auctioned off the items.  It is possible that Olga's prayer book was a aprt of this collection.  Who knows?  I'm sure whoever bought it will keep make sure it is well cared for.  Maybe it was even bought by someone who wants to return it to Russia.  I hope so.

This is all so very depressing.  :'( I didn't unfortunately notice this thread until this morning. Da*n that site!  I still hope it went to a good home, even if it wasn't mine.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Ortino »

Offline Sarushka

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2006, 09:31:03 PM »
Quote
The simple fact that it had a Russian handwritten inscription convinced me to attempt to bid.
The inscription was by the people who catalogued the children's posessions at the AP after their murder though, not Olga herself, right? At any rate, it had her bookplate in it!  8-)
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Offline M_Breheny

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Re: Olga's prayer book to be auctioned April 20
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2006, 06:16:41 PM »
I think the doctor who SLW is referring to was Armand Hammer.  He was a fascinating man who went to the newly created Soviet Union right after it was formed and became friendly with Lenin. Many of the items from pre-revolutionary Russia that ended up in the United States were purchased by Hammer and brought back to the U.S.  It is rather sad that an already-wealthy man became even wealthier by acquiring precious objects that had been stolen from their original owners.  

By the way, as I have stated in another post, I knew an old man (now deceased) who had been a friend of Armand Hammer in the 1950s.  

Mary