Woodward’s Antique Gallery & Auction House

Check out Woodward’s Auction House on the Avenue in Hampden! Click here for PDF Copy

If you are a member of the Loyola community, there is a good chance that you have trekked a couple of miles south of campus to Hampden or have at least heard of this distinctively Baltimorean neighborhood.  Hampden is known particularly for its commercial center on a four-block stretch of West 36th Street known as “The Avenue.”  Perhaps you have dined at restaurants such as Café Hon, King’s Pizza and Subs, or the Golden West Café, or browsed around some of the quirky shops like Atomic Books or the True Vine record shop.  Tucked in amongst the good eats and the trendy boutiques is another unique find: an auction house, Woodward’s Antique Gallery & Auction House, that is.

Woodward’s opened as an auction house in March 2007.  The building was built in 1908. In its original iteration, it was Hampden’s Ideal (movie) Theatre.  The last film was presented in September 1968 and the theatre closed soon thereafter.  The Salvation Army took over the space in 1973, but it has been going strong as an auction house in the past three years ever since owner Todd Woodward took over the place and got things rolling.  Around the time of opening, Woodward subjected the building to a restoration project.  He restored the theatre’s high ceilings, opened up the stage area – which had been blocked off for years, and replicated the original décor.

Woodward’s is primarily an estate liquidator, buying and auctioning the contents of homes, making plenty of interesting finds in the process.   Some of the merchandise that Woodward’s deals in may be a bit on the pricy end.  The members of Woodward’s are regularly on the lookout for all sorts of jewelry: gold jewelry, diamond rings, silver coins, Rolex and Swiss watches, and even class rings.  If you are hoping to find more affordable jewelry, you may just be in luck, because Woodward’s is also in the market for broken gold jewelry, mismatched earrings, and also unworking watches.

Woodward’s also buys and sells various knickknacks and what-have-you’s that could find a good home in a college dorm room.  Perusing around Woodward’s could lead you to such decorative items as slot machines and other casino items; dolls and stuffed animals; and sports, tourism, World War II, and other memorabilia.  If you have the goal of furnishing your lodging with kitsch, then Woodward’s is the way to go.  Their auctions may include such out-there objects as “vintage sewing items,” “old trinkets from Alaska and Hawaii,” “old fountain pens,” toy soldiers, wooden tops, “vintage wedding cake toppers,” “vintage catalogs & manuals,” and vintage calendars.  For the voyeurs out there, Woodward’s also carries “old love letters.”

Besides the miscellany of items that it offers, Woodward’s is also notable for its utilization of what is available in the building.  Taking a cue from the venue’s history as a movie theater, Woodward’s provides a custom-made theatre-oriented audio system with four 37-inch plasma TV screens to display and advertise auction pieces before and during auctions.  The Deco architecture of the building is also worth mentioning, and so is the interior of the building, which features the items that are currently being housed in wacky arrangements.  A zombie figure, for example, is presently residing in the lobby.

WLOY has found itself in business with Woodward’s thanks to their collection of musical items.  Woodward’s is on the lookout for acoustic and electric guitars as well as record LP’s and 45’s.  According to WLOY Business Director Eric Sappington, “They gave us an [expletive]-load of vinyl.”

The April 9 auction features antiques, collectibles, furniture, and art and jewelry.  According to the Woodward’s website, there will be “table lots, box lots, & much, much more!”  Items continue to arrive up until the day of the auction.

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