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our interview with
Mike Medhurst founded Medhurst & Company in 1985. Mike has been
actively buying and selling antiques for more than 30 years. By the time he
was in high school Mike was buying antiques for local dealers.
Graduating with a B.S. from Wheaton College, Mike opened his own
antique business in 1985 and was soon dealing primarily in historic
documents and autographs from the Civil War era. Mike later completed
his MS from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and by 1992 the
business had become more keenly focused on Civil War and pre-Civil War
images, documents and autographs.
Medhurst & Company buys and sells images at numerous national Civil
War shows each year. We have the largest inventory of daguerreotypes,
ambrotypes and tintypes in the Midwest and are well known for selling
high quality Civil War images of every variety. Mike is listed among the
reputable and recommended dealers in the 1993 book Collecting
Autographs and Manuscripts by noted autograph expert Charles Hamilton
(see page 382).
Many of the top collectors of Civil War and pre-Civil War photography
and documents count us as a valuable resource to supply them with
outstanding material. Images we have sold have been displayed at noted
large art museums (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Chicago Art
Institute, Nelson-Atkins, Library of Congress etc.) and we are a source for
many of the nation's top private and public collections.
Our services were a major part of a multi-million dollar purchase made by
the National Park Service. The Park Service also had us complete another
appraisal for them involving a major collection of Civil War material.
Professional memberships include: the Daguerreian Society, and the
Universal Autograph Collector Club (UACC).
Since we started the business Linda has been a behind the scenes force.
She has described images, kept the books and she is the shipping
department. So....all those nice compliments I've been getting about
packing...well...they should actually be directed to Linda. Linda makes
trips to the post office several times each week. I'm glad I don't have to
deal with that very often! She is a true shipping professional.
These days Nate's mind is with
his body over at Kansas
University. He is a pretty darn
good scanner when we press him
into service. He has been doing
some website maintenance work
from time to time. Nate also
makes an occasional trip to a
Civil War show to help with the
Hope is our friend and she is
currently at Washington University
in St. Louis. She has been scanning ,
describing, and transcribing her way
to fame and not much fortune. She
helps keep Ebay listings going. She is
artistic and has developed an
excellent sense of what makes a
good scan. In addition Hope has
been helping me with daguerreotype
restoration and glazing images. Many
of the scans on the site are hers.
When we were not keeping her busy
she managed to find time to become
a National Merit scholar!
Rugby our Old Engish Sheepdog is determined to keep too much work
from happening. When ignored he will occasionally eat a hard image
case or chew a CDV. He has found this to be an effective way to get
immediate attention. The more common technique is to bump anyone
typing on the computer with his large nose until petted for a significant
amount of time.
Our friend Becky has been the main person for the past year in the scanning
and describing of images and documents. We are quite fortunate to have
her. She was a history and reading teacher for twelve years but now enjoys
being a stay-at-home mom of three children. She plans to return to
education once all of her children are old enough to attend school.