The owners of Kirkwood in Eutaw have sold the home, which has also been a B&B in the past, and on September 5 they will hold an auction of interior furnishings. The Tuscaloosa News’ article reads in part:
For almost 150 years, a tall secretary desk made of rosewood and bird’s-eye maple has been at home in the Kirkwood mansion in Eutaw.
It was purchased new by Kirkwood’s original owner, cotton mogul Foster Mark Kirksey, shipped from New York to Mobile and likely sent upriver to Eutaw.
But in September, the desk by Thomas Brooks — estimated to be worth $20,000 to $40,000 or more — will be put up for auction along with about 400 other pieces of mint 19th-century furniture, oil paintings, Limoges porcelain, Waterford chandeliers and rugs that decorate Kirkwood. A few pieces of furniture, light fixtures and at least one piece of artwork are original to the antebellum house.
“This auction is one of more monumental proportion because of the collection and quality of pieces,” said Hal Hunt, owner of Hal Hunt auctions. “These are museum-quality pieces. It will draw people in from all over the U.S.”
Antique furniture styles include Empire, Classical and Federal by famous makers including John Henry Belter, Joseph Meeks and Prudence Mallard.
More than 30 oil paintings from the 19th century will be auctioned, including an 1863 signed portrait by artist Nicola Marschall. Marschall also designed the first Confederate flag and Confederate uniform.
Norris and Rebecca Sears, who also own the Freemount antebellum home in Eutaw, bought Kirkwood last month. They plan to move most of their current antique collection from Freemount to Kirkwood after the auction.
“We are still going to have tours of Kirkwood, but we probably won’t tour until after Thanksgiving once things get settled,” said Norris Sears.
The auction of the furnishings will take place on the Kirkwood grounds at 10 a.m. Sept. 5, with a public preview of the items from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 4. To view the furnishings online, go to www.halhunt.com.