The Hippo


Jun 26, 2019








The Longacres present their treasures at last year’s NH Antiques Show in Manchester. Courtesy photo.

57th Annual NH Antiques Show

Where: Radisson Hotel Manchester, 700 Elm St., Manchester
When: Thursday, Aug. 7, and Friday, Aug. 8, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Saturday, Aug. 9, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: $15 on Thursday, $10 on Friday and Saturday; visitors under 30 get in free; free return visits
Contact:, 430-7556

Everybody antique
Dealers bring their best stuff to NH Antiques Show


 Dozens of three-wall rooms sit side by side, set up to look like rooms of very old houses. Weathered game boards like checkers and parcheesi rest on top of chairs, or on dressers made of cherry or oak.

Each room is put together by one of the antiques dealers for the 57th Annual NH Antiques Show at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester, happening this year from Thursday, Aug. 7, through Saturday, Aug. 9. Some say it’s one of the biggest events for antiques dealers all over the country.
“[For a dealer], getting into the show is incredibly difficult,” said Tom Longacre, co-owner of Thomas R. Longacre Antiques in Marlborough. “Someone has to die or retire. It’s a really big deal for our field.”
The weekend will host over 60 antique sellers. Longacre said the show has a certain percentage of New Hampshire-based dealers, but there will be vendors from various parts of the country.
Visitors will get a chance to peer into all the different set-ups and look for unique artifacts to add to their collections — or at least find something that’ll look nice on a coffee table.
Dealers at the show will have a huge variety on display, including aged furniture, folk art, Americana pieces, weathervanes, cigar store indians, maritime and nautical items and much more. Certain dealers have different specialties; Longacre and his wife, Beverly, for example, sell a lot of Americana and folk art.
Russ Goldberger will be displaying a large collection of decoys (“false birds” for the antiquely impaired) at his table. Goldberger, who runs RJG Antiques with his wife Karen, only does two shows a year, including the one in Manchester.
“It’s an important show for all the dealers,” he said. “Some dealers only do this show. They’ll save some of their purchases for an entire year and only bring them out for this show.”
Despite the preconception that hidden treasures will be found on a first-come-first-served basis, Goldberger said this is not necessarily the case. He stressed the importance of creating an aesthetic for the booths, which means that the hottest item an antique dealer has to offer might not be presented on the first day because it doesn’t fit in with the rest of the layout.
“Most dealers have trucks with additional merchandise, because dealers will practically sell out, if not by the end of the day Thursday, then certainly Friday morning,” said Goldberger. “Certain colors might not lend themselves for the colors on the booth. Our best game board we might put out the second day because it didn’t lend itself the first day.”
Longacre said that the benefit of attending an antique show is that buyers can meet with the seller and his products face to face. Because we’ve become such a digitalized culture, it has become increasingly difficult to trust that someone is selling legitimate products, he said.
“Where the trickery occurs is where people do not stand behind their objects,” said Longacre. “Flea markets, yard sales … stuff can show up there which has not been screened. Even some auctions won’t stand behind their products.”
Antiques shows create their own risk, in a thrilling kind of way. Unlike sitting at your computer with multiple Internet pages pulled up about a particular product, the shows offer a “hidden treasure” factor. Buyers may stumble upon something intriguing and decide whether they should take the risk of buying the product at the antique seller’s price. This is true for the antiques dealers, too, who also have a difficult time listing an appropriate price on items whose proper value they aren’t entirely sure of.
“It’s very difficult to price objects that are unique and one of a kind,” said Longacre. “It’s based on demand. Does [the object] appeal to a lot of people, or is it so specialized that it only appeals to a small group of people? In that sense, the specialized categories are the toughest.”
As seen in the August 7, 2014 issue of the Hippo. 

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