Judge’s collection on auction block

    The late Judge Howard Albertson was known as “the marrying judge,” served as a state legislator and was a Lions Club member and a public servant during his life.
Albertson also had an extensive collection that spanned everything from rare books to military items that is going on the auction block later this month.
“I have never seen a collection like this,” said Mac Barlass, the Stillwater Auction Services auctioneer heading this Albertson auction.
“I’m not the oldest or the most experienced auctioneer in the state but I know it’s going to be a biggie,” Barlass added.
Barlass said there are surprises throughout Albertson’s collection. He’s worked with his team going through the items for more than a week, noting that they are only about halfway through the process.
The collection includes political memorabilia from up-starts to Minnesota candidates as well as John F. Kennedy and Hillary and Bill Clinton. His collection includes posters and buttons from other political races.
Odd things you wouldn’t think of include a real covered wagon, and complete “Rainmakers” portable equipment wagon. There’s also a Washington County Sheriff’s horse-drawn Paddy Wagon. Though Albertson never claimed to be a farmer, a grain drill, flame-thrower and a corn sheller will be sold.
The rest of the collection includes hand clothes washers, antiques and rare books. Toys, models, old photos, silverware, vases, dishes and framed paintings and many more items including those that have never been opened.
“We found an old box that was never opened,” Barlass said. “Inside that box was a coin collection he must have ordered and forgotten about.”
With so many items the key to this auction is that items will be sold in groups. Barlass said items would be boxed out on an eight-foot table with a variety of items in each box. Someone might be bidding on box three and the person next to them may be bidding on box five. The highest bid gets a choice of as many boxes off the table as they would like, once the bidder makes their choice the auctioneer starts again and people begin to bid, the end price could be lower but it could be higher too.
“It’s all a matter of who’s going to stop bidding when,” Barlass said.
The Albertson auction takes place at 9:30 a.m. Aug. 18 at the Albertson farm. People can come an hour before the auction to check out the items. The auction is expected to last several hours, and the Scandia-Marine Lions Lunch Wagon will be on hand serving food.