Live bidding returns to Wakefield-Scearce

SHELBYVILLE, KY (WAVE) – For the first time in 70 years, it’s back to basics for a famous Shelbyville antiques gallery. Wakefield-Scearce Galleries is organizing a live auction and it is also the launch of a new partnership.

The 30,000 square foot building housing Galerie Wakefield-Scearce is a sea of ​​treasures. The building was once a girls’ school.

“It was a boarding school,” says interior designer Lee W. Robinson, “for well-off southern girls.”

Robinson came to the gallery as a child. Now the two are teaming up for a new venture.

“I said ‘you know I’m sick of these supply chain issues.’ So, I said ‘Who do I know that has tons of furniture in stock? Wakefield-Scearce.’ said Robinson.

Robinson opens a boutique and will design a line of upholstery fabrics. He will incorporate the antiques found in the 75-year-old gallery into his designs.

“(It was) started by Mark Scearce in the 1940s after World War II,” Robinson said. “He went to Europe. I bought all the furniture from the bombed-out English country houses, I bought the paneling, the chandeliers, I brought them here.

The gallery is also known for its sterling silver julep cups. They mark the period of production with the initials of the current president. They’ve been doing it since Harry Truman came to power and always send one of the mugs to the new president. President Lyndon Johnson thanked them with a signed letter.

“He actually called my grandfather on Christmas one October and said, ‘I need 650 cups for my cabinet members,’ and those are the sterling silver julep cups,” said Matt Burnett, Scearce’s grandson.

When the gallery first started, they had live auctions. The two decided to start their new business by holding one again. One of the items that will be auctioned off is a leather trunk.

“It’s dated 1638. It has a royal crest on it,” says Robinson.

There is also a pastel painting that was cut into the frame of an Italian castle by a soldier during World War II.

“We think it was King Louis, who gave Louisville his name. He even has Lafranchini, the artist’s name,” Robinson said.

Pieces of history as a new history is made.

The auction will take place on Saturday, August 27 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Wakefield-Scearce located at 525 Washington St., Shelbyville. But you don’t have to be there to bid. You can go to to view auction items and bid.

They plan to have more auctions in the future.

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