Question: I purchased a box of art frames at a Marietta auction along with a print that was signed in pencil by an artist with only the last name of Sturgill, and from what I've read, it may have been created by Susan Sturgill of Ohio. On the back of the frame it reads, "The Bobbit Hole Art Studio Framing & Matting, 709 Fifth St., Marietta, Ohio, 45750, telephone (614) 373-8879." I have asked several longtime residents of Marietta if they have ever heard of this art studio and no one was able to answer my question. Can you possibly tell me when this art studio operated in Marietta and the approximate age of the print, and its value? - L.P., Marietta.
Answer: First of all, there were several different artists throughout the country who signed their artwork with the last name Sturgill in pencil. I was able to eliminate many of these artists. For your artwork is actually known as comic art. I don't believe your piece of art was originally created by Susan Sturgill of Ohio. I believe it just may have been created by Cairo Sturgill who was a famous comic strip artist, whose artwork today sells for $300 and up on eBay. In answer to your question, "when did this art studio operate in Marietta," you should be able to find out this information at your local library or courthouse. Going by the studio's telephone number with the area code 614, the studio could have operated in Marietta somewhere between the year 1947 when the 614 area code went into effect, up until 1998 when the 614 telephone territory was split into the new area code 740. To find out more about your piece of art or to sell it for top dollar on the auction block, contact Heritage Auctions in Dallas, Texas, which specializes in selling comic art. Their toll free number is 1-800-872-6467.
Q.: Read your article on Harry Fischer postcards of Marietta. I have an old shoe box marked P.C. Fischer Shoe Company, Putnam Street, Marietta. Can you tell me how old the shoe box is? - P.W., Devola.
A.: Are you sure it says Putnam Street? Harry Fischer's father, P.C. Fischer, was known to have operated a shoe store in downtown Marietta from the late 1890s to early 1940s at 246 Front St.
Larry Koon is the author of several price guide books on antiques and collectibles. His column appears every Monday on Life. Send letters to Treasure in the Attic, c/o The Marietta Times, 700 Channel Lane, Marietta 45750; or e-mail him at koonantiques@yahoo.
com. When writing, send a description of the item. Letters will be answered through this column.