2013 Connecticut Spring Antiques Show
Returns to the Hartford Armory!
March 16 and 17, 2013
Press Release: August 6, 2012
For more information: Please call Haddam Historical Society at 860-345-2400
The Connecticut Spring Antiques Show, which has been called the “grand dame” of New England antiques shows and is celebrating its 40 th anniversary next year, will return to its long-time home at the Hartford Armory for the 2013 show on March 16 th and March 17 th .
The venerable Connecticut antiques show, which serves as a showcase for pre-1840 American furniture and decorative objects, garnered national attention late last year when it was unable to find a suitable location within the state and was held, in the spring of 2012, on the grounds of the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, Mass.
“We are thrilled to be back at the Armory and celebrating our 40 th anniversary at home,” said Elizabeth Malloy, executive director of the Haddam Historical Society, the parent organization of the show. Founded in 1973 by scholar Frances Phipps and antiquarian Betty Forbes, the Haddam society’s yearly endeavor was held at the landmark Hartford Armory for nearly twenty years, before moving to the Hartford Expo Center in 2002, where it stayed until 2011.
A major annual project of the Haddam Historical Society, the show has been described as “one of the most important antiques shows in the nation” by Antiques & Arts Weekly, and features high-quality early American furniture and appropriate accessories from some of the country’s most respected dealers of antiques.
Karen DiSaia, who is managing the Haddam show for the eighth year, said the Connecticut Spring Antiques show “has survived and flourished through many moves that were considered risky.”
“We are delighted to be moving back to the center of Hartford, where we started. The long tradition of this show, which has stayed true to its original ideals, will continue on as an event that is highly anticipated by dealers and collectors,” DiSaia said.
Among the items on display will be outstanding and unique examples of early American furniture, porcelain and pottery, silver and pewter, fine art, brass and ironware, textiles, prints and more. The show attracts serious collectors, supports new collectors and brings both together with knowledgeable dealers and experts who share a passion for period American antiques and decorative arts. The show has earned a reputation not only as a destination show with quality merchandise but also as an educational experience for visitors.
Since the events of September 11, 2001, the use of the Armory had been reserved for other purposes and was unavailable to the Haddam society as a venue for the antiques show, but Terry Smith of Haddam, the society president and treasurer for the antiques show, said there was a change this year. “We want to thank the governor’s office, several private individuals, the Search Committee [for the antiques show] and the Connecticut Military Department,” Smith said, adding, “There is a lot of enthusiasm building for this show, and we are working very hard to make it a big success.”
As in previous years, the 2013 show will feature presentations by experts in American decorative arts and a special exhibition by the Haddam Historical Society. There will be a catered tea room, and free parking in the parking garage directly adjacent to the Armory. The Connecticut Spring Antiques Show benefits the Haddam Historical Society’s educational programming, exhibitions and collections care as well as the preservation of the Thankful Arnold House Museum, which is located on the Connecticut Women’s Heritage Trail and has one of the state’s designated Historic Gardens. The Haddam Historical Society provides a variety of annual programs, events and educational opportunities for both adults and children including house tours, history walks, exhibits, and workshops.
Additional information about the Connecticut Spring Antiques Show will be posted on the society’s website, www.haddamhistory.org
The Connecticut Spring Antiques Show was founded in 1973 by the late Frances Walker Phipps, who with Betty Forbes
was responsible for establishing it as one of the country's most important venues of authentic early American
furniture. A long time Higganum resident, Miss Phipps wrote about antiques for The Hartford Times and New York Times
and published many important works including "The ollector's Complete Dictionary of American Antiques" and
"Colonial Kitchens, Their Furnishings and Gardens." Miss Phipps was also a founding member of the Haddam Historical
Society and was instrumental in the restoration of the Thankful Arnold House Museum.
Miss Phipps chaired the show from its inception in 1974 until her death in 1986. When she started the show she
stipulated that furniture shown must be American made prior to the year 1840 (prior to the age of mass production).
It was said she had sole and absolute right to decide who could exhibit, and what and how, which at times
generated controversy. However, it was her sharp-eyed supervision that kept the show unparalleled.
For the first 19 years, the show was housed at the Connecticut State Armory in Hartford. Between 1993 and 1996
the Armory underwent an extensive restoration and the show was moved to the University of Hartford. In 1997 the
show returned to the Armory for a five- year stay, however following the events of September 11, 2001, the Armory
was closed to public events for security reasons. Since 2002 the show has been held at the Expo Center just north
of downtown Hartford.
The show continues to have exacting standards and is recognized as one of the finest exhibitions of early American
made furniture and accessories. For further information please call 860-345-2400.