Yankee Candle founder’s nautical collection going to auction

  • Michael Kittredge II, who died last July at the age of 67, plays at a fundraiser at his Leverett home. Kittredge’s nautical collection is set to be auctioned off by Boston Harbor Auctions. File Photo

Staff Writer
Published: 4/24/2020 12:46:30 PM

The collection of the late founder of Yankee Candle Co. will be auctioned off Saturday.

Boston Harbor Auctions is holding an online auction for the Michael Kittredge Nautical Collection, a 400-lot collection that offers a selection of nautical antiques, as well as Kittredge’s “treen” collection (a collection of handmade wooden household objects).

“He really loved things that were made out of wood,” said Larry Lannan, owner of Boston Harbor Auctions. “The best way to explain (the collection) is that these were some of his favorite things. Wherever he went around the world, he searched out finely crafted pieces from wood.”

Beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, the sale will take place via two bidding platforms, liveauctioneers.com and invaluable.com, as well as by phone and by absentee, where a form is filled out online in advance and Boston Harbor Auctions bids on the bidder’s behalf.

For more information on taking part in the bidding process, visit bostonharborauctions.com.

A resident of Leverett, Michael J. Kittredge II is known for having started Yankee Candle, a business that began in 1969 in his family’s South Hadley home. The company has grown to include hundreds of retail stores and more than 35,000 authorized retailers worldwide, according to the company’s website.

Kittredge died last July at 67 years old following a brief illness.

The auction on Saturday contains a collection of items that were not part of the auction Kittredge arranged in Nantucket last year, according to Lannan.

“These were the choice items Mike chose not to sell that he wanted to keep,” said Lannan, whose friendship with Kittredge spanned about 20 years.

Lannan said that after Kittredge died, a family representative approached Boston Harbor Auctions about holding an auction to sell some of Kittredge’s mementos from around the world.

The 400-lot auction will include solid brass items such as ships’ wheels, telescopes, compasses, anchors and lanterns. A selection of ship models will also be offered, as well as a selection of paintings, prints, nautical charts, blueprints and a number of carved items.

“I’m looking out at the offerings and it’s just a treasure trove,” Lannan said. “It’s a little overwhelming, but it’s beautiful.”

Boston Harbor Auctions, which is based in Norwell, specializes in fine art and antique auctions.


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