PM Estate Sales has organized the estate sale of Richmond family glass in two stages. The first will be this weekend at the family home at 327 9th Ave. in Belle. Sale times are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Saturday. There are no presales and because of the size of the home and the fragile nature of the glass, the number of people permitted inside at one time will be limited.
The second stage of the sale will take place Thanksgiving weekend at The Purple Moon on Quarrier Street.For information and to see photographs and a video tour of the sale, visit www.pmestatesales.com or visit The Purple Moon on Facebook.
CHARLESTON, W.Va.--One of Marietta Richmond's greatest joys in life was to spend time with her sister, Jane Lucas, scouring estate sales and flea markets for collectible glass.
Together, the sisters found treasures such as iridescent carnival glass and opalescent hobnail glass made by West Virginia's own Fenton Glass Co., Hummel figurines, Royal Doulton china, Dresden porcelain, Fostoria and Blenko glass and pieces from companies in Ohio and Pennsylvania that are no longer in business.
Marietta and her sister pored over books to learn about the glass and made their purchases wisely. Marietta was equally careful in storing her glass, tucking it into display cabinets in her Belle home.
Her son, Jeff, recalls his mom rarely used functional pieces such as punch bowls or pitchers and glasses, preferring not to take a chance at breaking them.
"She had a ton of it," he said.
When his aunt died in 2002, his mom was heartbroken.
"After Aunt Jane passed away, Mom was never the same. They were the closest of sisters," he said. His mom became ill shortly after that and even though she didn't have the energy for estate sales anymore, she bought collectible glass on the QVC television shopping channel.
Little did Jeff and his brother and sister know just how broad Marietta's collection was until their dad, Homer, died this past February at age 76. Homer, owner of Richmond Optical in North Charleston, told the siblings they should take what they wanted of the glass and sell the rest.
Jeff has bought the family home and is working to remodel it. He turned to Chuck and Connie Hamsher, owners of The Purple Moon on Quarrier Street, to help make sense of the collection.
The Hamshers unearthed more than 1,000 pieces of glass.
"It was a treasure hunt," Chuck Hamsher said.
Hundreds of pieces, including vases and wine glasses, butter and candy dishes and figurines, were stored in cabinets both on the main and second floors of the home.
And then Hamsher kept finding more.
"They were behind things and under things," he said. "We ended up with way more than we thought. There literally was glass everywhere.
"The older and better pieces were buried in the basement -- we found some real treasures there."