Oswego County Historical Society Silent Auction for Richardson-Bates House Museum Set for Friday, May 6 | Oswego County


OSWEGO – The Oswego County Historical Society (OCHS) will be hosting its 33rd annual “Not So Silent Auction” fundraiser from 6-8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 6 at the Lake Ontario Event and Conference Center, 26 E. First St., Oswego . Admission is $20 and includes a light buffet, refreshments, and cash bar. Tickets are available in advance and at the door on the day of the event. All proceeds from the event support general operational support for the Richardson-Bates House Museum, the home of OCHS.

“Our dedicated volunteers are key to our success every year. So many wonderful donations have been made by generous corporations, dedicated OCHS members and supportive local citizens,” said Jennifer Bertollini, Co-Chair of the event. “The support we have received has been incredible, and now we need the help of the public in attending this important event. Anyone interested in preserving our local history, the museum and its incredible collections, join- us for a pleasant evening.”

A wide variety of gift certificates, antiques, homewares, collectibles, artwork and more will be available for auction. A traditional Chinese auction will be presented with chances offered on a dozen themed gift baskets.

The live auction portion, led by auctioneer Gerald Petro, will begin at 7:15 p.m. One of the special items in the live auction is a historically detailed model of the legendary RMS Titanic. Often considered the most famous ocean liner in world history, she makes an excellent collector’s item. Included is a sign of the RMS Titanic and various books related to her incredible legacy.

Another of the unique items that will be featured in the live auction portion of the event this year is a memorabilia replica of legendary Oswego rocker Alvin Bronson. Bronson was an early settler in Oswego and a prominent commission merchant and civic leader. He was the first president of the village of Oswego, then became a senator for the state of New York. He was instrumental in creating the Oswego Canal and connecting it to the Erie Canal. His leadership and vision put Oswego on the map as a major international port of prosperity. He was commissioned by the United States government as a supply agent for military and naval supplies kept at Oswego during the War of 1812. After the Battle of Oswego in May of 1814, Bronson was captured by the British in the purpose of seizing military supplies. Legend has it that while Bronson was in his warehouse office sitting in his famous rocking chair, he refused to get up and give confidential information. He was hoisted in his seesaw and put on a flagship for imprisonment at Fort Henry in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. He was eventually released due to the failed attempt by the British, and he successfully requested to keep his rocker. In 1973, the city of Oswego celebrated its 125th anniversary, having been formed in 1848. The rockers are engraved at the top with the anniversary years, as well as the first seal of the city. Browne-Davis Furniture of Oswego has ordered 125 souvenir replicas of the Bronson Seesaw. The rocking replicas are labeled by number and have their history under the seat written by Rosemary Nesbitt, longtime Oswego town historian and founder of the H. Lee White Maritime Museum. Nesbitt was a popular storyteller, author, and college professor in the theater department at SUNY Oswego. She wrote a local history book called “The Great Rope” which inspired the idea of ​​replica rockers. The one from the live auction is labeled number one and belonged to Nesbitt. This will make a nice souvenir from Oswego. Other Oswego memorabilia are up for auction, including an album of vintage Oswego postcards, vintage photographs of historic Oswego moments, and a map of Oswego Harbor.

“For anyone who appreciates the history of Oswego, particularly the War of 1812 era, will appreciate having this as a reminder of the value of our history and also of the celebration that took place there nearly fifty years in 1973,” said Oswego County historian Justin White. .

“Alvin Bronson was considered the ‘first citizen’ of Oswego, settling there in 1810. He lived to see it from wilderness to thriving port town until his remarkable age of 97 in 1881. We are proud to have the famous original rocker and his fine portrait, commissioned around the same time and attributed to Oswego artist Thomas Wentworth, both are proudly displayed in the museum’s permanent gallery, acknowledging Oswego’s role during the War of 1812,” White added. “These rare items were gifted to the museum by his direct descendants.”

For those who want to spice up their summer experience, there will be a special new opportunity presented by the City of Oswego. Oswego’s waterfront and marina beautification projects spearheaded an idea by Mayor Billy Barlow to showcase it through Sunset Tiki Tours. For a good time to relax, there will be a chance to win a boat trip on Lake Ontario to see the Oswego skyline during beautiful sunsets with a cocktail in hand. It would make a great gift for friends or family.

Watercolors, prints and photographs will be the stars of the auction. For those interested in Oswego landmarks, a hand-painted slate of the Oswego West Pierhead Lighthouse will be offered. Plus, you’ll find idyllic historical sites including a needlepoint artwork of the Oswego County Courthouse located in Washington Square and a drawing of the Oswego Public Library.

Another distinctive item worth noting is a sterling silver necklace with a 14k gold overlay courtesy of Dufore’s for Diamonds. It will make a timeless addition to any jewelry collection. Among the antiques in the auction are small Oswego furniture and collectibles. Perhaps one of the rarest unique items, is a 19th century transom glass window salvaged from the main entrance of Oswego’s long-running Fortnightly Club. The once stately home was originally built in the early 19th century as the private residence for early settler and notable prominent citizen Frederick T. Carrington.

A committee of about ten volunteers has been working for several months to formalize the fundraising. “We are very lucky to have such a strong committee and every year we have new volunteers who have attended the event and know how important it is to support the museum,” Stone said. “We also have volunteers who help us every week and we can always use more.”

Auction committee member Lyn Patterson has always enjoyed participating in the auction and attending many museum functions with her family. They have all become devoted supporters. “There really is something for everyone at the auction. Lots of auction items would be perfect picks for those interested in nearby activities. I know we plan to bid on some of these great deals,” Patterson added.

Family opportunities include four-pack family admission to the Syracuse City Museum of Science and Technology. Popular entertainment opportunities include tickets to the remarkable Syracuse Stage. For anyone who enjoys both comedy and drama shows, there will be no need to go further than Oswego by bidding on multiple sets of admission tickets donated by Oswego players. Tickets for the Oswego City Food and History Tours, led by Colette Astoria, offer the opportunity to sample local cuisine and discover historic points of interest in the downtown and residential areas.

“We have been very fortunate to always receive interesting, unique and relevant articles for everyone,” said co-chair Stone. “We hope that those who attend will leave with something they will enjoy and remember.”

A popular addition to Silent and Live Auction games will be the Antique Appraisal opportunity. Each ticket will include a free antique appraisal by Gerald Petro of Iroquois Auctions in Brewerton. Additional reviews after the first free will be $5 each, with proceeds going to the event. “Anyone who loves antiques and owns something unique that they have always been curious about and would like to know more about its origin and value will have that opportunity,” added Justin White, a member of the auction committee. “If you like popular TV shows that feature antique appraisals, you’ll definitely appreciate having that personal experience provided at auction.”

All proceeds will support the preservation of the Richardson-Bates House Museum. “Every dollar earned still helps maintain this historic local landmark. Bring your friends will be a big boost for the event,” added White.

The Oswego County Historical Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the county’s rich historical past. The company owns and maintains the Richardson-Bates House Museum at 135 E. Third St. in Oswego, a landmark on the National Register of Historic Places. The museum is open to the public from April to December on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and on other days by appointment. For more information about the auction, call the museum at 315-343-1342.

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