Author Archive

Changes Coming to Central Virginia Auction House

QCVA_LogoLetters_v2 Quinn & Farmer Auctions Moves to a New Location and Modifies Ownership.

Quinn & Farmer Auctions is relocating from its current location to a larger complex off of I-64 east of Charlottesville and closer to Richmond. The new address will be 8854 Three Notch Road, Troy, VA 22974. In conjunction with this move Ken Farmer will be focusing on appraisals and wealth management as Ken Farmer & Associates. Paul Quinn will assume full ownership and responsibility of the auction business. It will be rebranded as Quinn’s Auction Galleries Central Virginia; this location joins Paul’s existing Quinn’s Auction Galleries in Northern Virginia. “Ken and I are looking forward to working together in the future in a way that makes sense for both of us,” stated Paul.

Ken added, “This new arrangement really allows me to focus on my clients while working more closely with them without needing to worry about the day-to-day operations of an auction business. I am confident we will both be happy with the outcome.”

The current managing director, Skip Usry, will continue in this role and all of the current staff including Ken’s wife, Jane Farmer, will transition to the new location.

Monday, September 14th will be the final weekly Treasure Auction conducted at the current location in Charlottesville. A multi-estate Fine and Decorative Arts Auction will take place as a grand opening at the new location on Saturday, September 26th.

Ken Farmer & Associates is headed by celebrity appraiser Ken Farmer, a twenty-year veteran of PBS’ popular Antiques Roadshow. He will be providing public speaking, appraisals, art brokerage, and professional consultation to clients across the country. More information can be found at

Quinn’s Auction Galleries is the largest antiques and fine art auction house in the Commonwealth of Virginia with a location serving Northern Virginia and the Washington, D.C. Metro area and now in Central Virginia serving Charlottesville and Richmond. More information can be found at

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Washington Post, September 2015

In rare papers up for auction, Jackie Kennedy makes an inscrutable heroin joke


Jackie Kennedy is known for her elegant, tasteful transformation of the White House interiors, but a new cache of papers up for auction offers a rare peek at the nitty gritty aspects of prettying up the presidential digs — as well as the former first lady’s wicked sense of humor.

In letters, drawings, and other items being sold by Virginia-based Quinn’s Auction Galleries mostly from the estate of James Bernard West, the Camelot-era White House chief usher who died in 1983, Kennedy shows an attention to the aesthetics of even the humblest working spaces. In one missive, she instructs West to make changes to make the press room look tidier, including possibly adding shelves and trash cans for the sloppy men of the Fourth Estate — though the first lady admitted it was an uphill battle. “That room will never be ideal as they leave their cubbys messy,” she said of the scribes.

Letters cover mundane details, from the kinds of trash cans she wants in public areas to the positioning of dog beds and light fixtures, with the occasional flash of the first lady’s gently acerbic wit. In the West Foyer, for example, Kennedy asks West to remove a gold trophy: “it looks like the prize one would give to a lady driving champion,” she writes.

Another moment of Kennedy’s levity comes in a watercolor poster (estimated to draw as much as $3,000) she made for West in 1971, well after the family’s departure from the White House. In honor of West’s visit to the family’s home in New York, Kennedy drew a faux “wanted” sign advertising for a chief usher for their Manhattan digs. Among the duties of the job — those presumably those handled by West during the family’s White House years — included “waltz,” “bulldoze,” “winetaste,” “intercept dignitaries” and “forge signatures.”

And then another task that sounds like some kind of inside joke: “take resident kindergarten on field trip to heroin withdrawal center.” Hmm.

Matt Quinn, Executive Vice President of the auction company, says that while there is plenty of Kennedy memorabilia out there, many of the pieces on the auction block offer a rare, intimate look at the storied family. “To find something that’s this personal — it’s an honor,” he says.

The auction takes place online and live in Quinn’s in Falls Church on Thursday night.

This article was originally featured in the Washington Post on September 9, 2015. Source credit: Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.

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Japanese Art Auction in Falls Church: September 2015


Japanese Art Auction: Wednesday, September 9, 2015 at 6pm

*please note, this auction will take place at our Falls Church location. For directions click here.

See the catalog here.

Preview Available:

Saturday, September 5, 2015: 10:00am – 2:00pm
Sunday, September 6, 2015: Appointment Only – 10:00am-2:00pm
Monday, September 7, 2015: Appointment Only – 10:00am-2:00pm
Tuesday, September 8, 2015: 10:00am – 7:00pm
Wednesday, September 9, 2015: 10:00am – 6:00pm
** appointments must be made by Friday, September 4, 2015 by 2:00pm
Phone bidding service provided, with limited Chinese (Mandarin) speaking phone bidding available.

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Waverly Rare Books Catalog Auction in Falls Church: September 2015


Waverly Rare Books Catalog Auction: Thursday, September 10, 2015 at 6pm

*please note, this auction will take place at our Falls Church location. For directions click here.

See the catalog here.
Preview Available:

Monday, August 31st – Friday, September 4th: 10am-5pm (by appointment)
Saturday, September 5th: 10am – 4:00pm
Monday, September 7th: by appointment only
Tuesday, September 8th: 10am – 7pm
Wednesday, September 9th: 10am – 7pm
Thursday, September 10th: 10am – 6pm

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Fine & Decorative Arts Catalog Auction: September 2015


Join us for our next Decorative Arts Catalog Auction, Saturday, September 12, 2015 at 11:00am.

*please note, this auction will take place at our Falls Church location. For directions click here.

See the catalog here.

Preview Available:

Saturday, September 5, 2015: 10:00am – 2:00pm
Sunday, September 6, 2015: Appointment Only – 10:00am-2:00pm**
Monday, September 7, 2015: Appointment Only – 10:00am-2:00pm**
Tuesday, September 8, 2015: 10:00am – 7:00pm
Wednesday, September 9, 2015: 10:00am – 6:00pm
Thursday, September 10, 2015: 10:00am-6:00pm
Friday, September 11, 2015: 10:00am – 4:30pm
Saturday, September 12, 2015: 9:00am – 11:00am
**appointments must be made no later than Friday, September 4, 2015 by 2:00pm

Click the catalog cover below to view the catalog:

Quinn's Auction Galleries

Questions? Call us at (703) 532-5632 or email

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Do you ship items?

Falls Church Location:

Quinn’s Auction Galleries & Waverly Rare Books (the Gallery) ONLY ship with FedEx Domestic and USPS internationally. We do not ship Media Mail. Shipping costs are based on the weight of your lots and your location. We require a complete shipping address and phone number to process your shipping quote. You will receive your shipping quote in your invoice via your registered email. Once payment is received Quinns/Waverly Books will ship items FedEx ground in the United States, USPS International or release items to an outside shipper.

We reserve the right to recommend an outside shipper based on fragility and size of lot. We offer recommendations for outside shipping by trusted shippers if necessary. If using an outside shipper Quinn’s Auction Galleries/Waverly Rare Books is not responsible for damages by carriers or packers of purchased lots, whether or not recommended by us, and will not be liable for any losses which result.

Payment Policies:

Please remit payment by check, money order, cashier’s check, or wire transfer along with a copy of the invoice. For purchases under $2000 credit cards are accepted. We accept Master Card, Visa and American Express. There is a 4% service fee for use of a credit card.
Invoices greater than $2000 require payment by certified check, bank check, cash or wire transfer.

The Gallery must receive payment in full before any of your merchandise will be available for removal by you or shipped to you. The Gallery reserves the right to hold merchandise purchased by personal check until the check has cleared the bank.

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Arlington Magazine, August 2015

Restaurant Critic Phyllis Richman’s Cookbook Collection Goes to Auction Proceeds from the Aug. 12 sale at Quinn’s Auction House in Falls Church will benefit the Parkinson’s Foundation.


Have you ever wondered what a restaurant critic cooks at home? If you head to Quinn’s Auction Galleries in Falls Church on Wednesday, you’ll find a wealth of answers from The Washington Post’s longtime food editor and restaurant reviewer Phyllis Richman.

Nearly 200 cookbooks from Richman’s private collection will hit the auction block, including many first editions and signed copies with authors’ inscriptions to the legendary food writer, who recently chronicled her culinary adventures in Arlington for this magazine.

The collection heading to auction includes the first-edition volume of The French Menu Cookbook from 1970, and a 1975 edition of The Joy of Cooking. There are also several books on Jewish and kosher cooking, including Jewish Cooking in America by noted cookbook author and journalist Joan Nathan.

I also spotted a copy of the kids’ book title Cool Careers for Girls in Food—an especially resonant addition in light of this biting commentary that Richman penned for the Post about a Harvard dean who declined to admit her to the school’s urban planning program for fear that her studies would leave her unable to fulfill her responsibilities as a wife and mother. (The food world is ever grateful to that dean, given that Richman ended up pursuing a career in food journalism instead.)

The sale will also include copies of Richman’s own mystery novels, The Butter Did It and Murder on the Gravy Train, for $10 each.

Also on the auction block: several commemorative plates from the many James Beard Foundation dinners Richman attended during her career. Each of the plates, from 1992, 1994, 1996, 1997 and 1998, has a design relating to the theme of that year’s dinner.

The preview begins at 10 a.m. this Wednesday, and the auction begins at 6 p.m. Quinn’s Auction Galleries are located at 360 South Washington St. in Falls Church. Proceeds will benefit the Parkinson Foundation of the National Capital Area.

This article originally appeared online August 10, 2015 in Arlington Magazine, authored by Jennifer Sergent.

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