Rare Polasek Bronze Remington Arms Centennial Trophy to be offered at Antique Helper Auctions
October 01, 2012 | view archive
We are pleased to offer of a rare bronze figure by noted 20th Century sculptor Albin Polasek in our October 13 Art & Antiques Auction. The sculpture, produced in 1916 to celebrate the Remington Arms Company’s Centennial Celebration, represents the company’s founder, Eliphalet Remington II.
Albin Polasek (1879-1965) was considered on of American’s most foremost sculptors of the 20th Century. Born in Czechoslovakia, he immigrated to the United States in the 1910s.
Photo Credit, left: Albin Polasek & Sculpture Gardens, Winter Park, FL
- Prix de Rome, 1910
- Paris Salon Honorable Mention, 1913
- Head of Sculpture Department, Art Institute of Chicago (1916-1946)
- Associate Member of the National Academy of Design, 1927
Large Public Works:
Theodore Thomas Memorial, 1924
Wilson Monument, 1928
Radigast and Sts Cyril and Methodius, 1931 (Czech Republic)
Mararyk Memorial, Chicago, 1941
Mother over the Word, 1942
The Remington Centenial Trophy
In 1916, The Centennial Commission of the Village of Ilion, New York commissioned noted sculptor, Albin Polasek, to produce a statue of the Remington Arms Company's founder, Eliphalet Remington II, in honor of the achievement of 100 years in business. From the clay original were produced 48 bronze statues, and one was sent to the Adjutant General of each state, from the Village of Ilion.
The plaque on each statute stated: “Presented by Citizens of Ilion, New York to Organized Militia of the U.S. for Perpetual Competition.” The original intention was that each 40lb statue would be used as an annual trophy, used to encourage rifle practice and marksmanship by the “organized militia” of each state, and be awarded annually to a winning rifle team in a special match, known as “The Remington Centennial Trophy Match.” State militias were the forerunners of the National Guard; it is possible that some Remington Centennial Trophies may still be part of some public collections, while others are held in private collections. The statue offered at Antique Helper Auctions has been in private hands for 50 years.
According to Trudy Furno, Researcher at the Albin Polasek Museum and Sculpture Gardens in Winter Park, FL, the bronze to be offered on October 13 is one of only five known examples.
Frequently mistaken to represent a Minuteman or American frontiersman Daniel Boone, one such statue has been on display at the Headquarters of the Kentucky National Guard since 1974. Another is in the Polasek Museum collection. Another, identified as Daniel Boone, sold at auction in 2001. Furno became aware of a fourth example, located in Louisiana, in June. Antique Helper’s October 13 offering brings the grand total to 5. There whereabouts of the remaining 43 examples is unknown.