The public is invited to bid on charity auction items for the benefit of the library at booth CH

Posted: Aug 09, 2019 6:00 AM

Auctioneer Fairfield Auction invites members of the Newtown and area community to review and bid on surplus items at the Newtown Library Fundraising Online Auction, ongoing until to Thursday September 5 at

All funds raised through the Newtown Library Fundraiser will benefit efforts to preserve the library’s valuable museum and archival collections, which include all of the artifacts and furnishings left at the library by its benefactor, Mary Hawley, in the 1930s, along with hundreds of others.

Library director Douglas Lord stressed that none of the important items in terms of Newtown’s local history are part of the auction.

“As beautiful as they are, none of these items were created by a local artisan and none of them were owned by the Hawley family,” he said of the lots on offer.

People can review the 15 pieces online or in person. They are on display in the Hawley Gallery, located on the third floor of the library, 25 Main Street.

Library Board Chair Amy Dent said the auction items are “a small fraction of the total collection.

“These particular pieces are simply surplus to the needs of the library,” continued Ms. Dent. “The library has done an admirable job over the past few years in determining which items are culturally significant to Newtown.”

Art and History Subcommittee Chairman Ray Irrerra said: “This auction will not only free up much-needed space that the library can use to showcase other important pieces for the public, but also, hopefully, to raise some money to help cover the costs. associated with the preservation and protection of antiques, textiles and hundreds of historical documents from Newtown’s past that the library cares about.

Fairfield Auction, located in Monroe, hosts free library fundraising as a gesture of goodwill. Prior to the auction launch, owner Jack DeStories spent time in the library to help verify the provenance of each of the 15 items and, in many cases, further clarify where each was made.

“The library made it clear from the start that the contents of the archives were prohibited,” he said. “We are happy to do this for the library, as it is a great institution that obviously takes its role as custodian of Newtown’s cultural heritage very seriously.”

Items include a Victorian walnut cylinder desk, bronze lamp base, and Victorian marble mantel clock.

Items are as is, all sales are final and there are no guarantees. Buyers must transport the items themselves and offers are online only. All items must be paid for and picked up at the library between Friday September 6 and Friday September 13.

The library reference desk accommodates questions related to the auction; call 203-426-4533.

The Cyrenius H. Booth Library was a gift from Newtown Benefactor Mary Elizabeth Hawley and is named after her maternal grandfather. In addition to books, streaming media, and databases, the library offers meeting spaces as well as exhibits of historic Newtown art and artifacts. The library responds to the needs of the community by going online; summon; partnership; and serve as a community center and place to learn with each other with the mission of promoting the lifelong joy of learning, stimulating curiosity, supporting the exchange of ideas and providing a place welcoming gathering for our community.

This Windsor-style sofa attributed to Wallace Nutting, circa 1930, is one of 15 items auctioned by the CH Booth Library to raise funds for the museum and the library’s archival collections. —Photo by Fairfield Auctions

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