An auction set for Friday, Aug. 17 at the Neighborhood House in Northeast Harbor will feature items from Ringing Point, the Rockefellers’ former home in Seal Harbor. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE KNOWLES CO.

Public auction set for Rockefeller estate items

MOUNT DESERT — A public auction of more than 400 items from the estate of David Rockefeller Sr. will be held Friday, Aug. 17, at noon at Neighborhood House in Northeast Harbor.

Rockefeller, the billionaire businessman and philanthropist who died last year at 101, was a lifelong seasonal resident of Seal Harbor.

The items to be auctioned include paintings, decorative objects, furniture, carpets and china. Proceeds will benefit the Mount Desert-based Land & Garden Preserve, which Rockefeller and his late wife Peggy created, aw well as other organizations that the Rockefeller’s supported. Those organizations have not been named by the executors of the Rockefeller estate.

In May, Christie’s auction house in New York sold 1,500 items from David and Peggy Rockefeller’s collection of paintings, sculptures and decorative art items for a total of $832.6 million, the most ever for a private collection. All of the proceeds from what Christie’s described as “the most significant charitable auction in history” went to a dozen non-profit organizations including the Land & Garden Preserve and Maine Coast Heritage Trust. Three paintings – one each by Picasso, Monet and Matisse – sold for a total of $280 million.

Somesville auctioneer Jerry Miller, who has been selected by the executors of the Rockefeller estate to conduct next week’s auction, said it will feature items from Ringing Point, the Rockefellers’ home in Seal Harbor. Also included are a few items from The Eyrie in Seal Harbor, which was the summer home of David Rockefeller’s parents, John D. Rockefeller Jr. and Abby Aldrich Rockefeller.

Miller said the items that will be up for bid were among those not selected by Christie’s for its New York auction. They range from fine art to patio furniture.

“Despite the fact that Christie’s took a fair number of things to New York, it’s a pretty great sale,” Miller said. “The intent is to have it be an opportunity for regular people to come and get a memento of David Rockefeller. It will be fun.”

A preview of the items to be auctioned is schedule for Neighborhood House on Thursday, Aug. 16, from 4-8 p.m. and on Friday from 8 a.m. until the auction starts at noon. Bids may be placed in advance by calling Miller at 244-4014 or 266-1084 or at [email protected]

The Land & Garden Preserve, which will be the major beneficiary of the auction, owns and maintains the Asticou Azalea Garden and Thuya Garden in Northeast Harbor, as well as 1,165 acres of woods and meadows around Little Long Pond in Seal Harbor, which Rockefeller gave to the Preserve in 2015.

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]

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