Certified appraisers, collectors attend annual antique off-road show

Richard Alexander appraises Jerry Baker's oil painting.

Jean and Jerry Barker watch antique road-shows on television, and have quite a collection of old furniture and keepsakes in their home.

â??We do have a real antique car that we actually dated in before we were married,â?? Barker said, standing beside his wife. â??Weâ??re celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary next week, and I wish the car was finished, but it's not.â??

They recently acquired a Tony Blanchard French oil painting.

â??It belonged to my 93-year-old cousin who spent his life in California and Florida,â?? Barker said. â??He was the manager of a furniture business, and they did quite a bit of world travel. The portrait is a Paris scene. They assume it was somewhere around 1930.â??

The couple decided to get the portrait appraised at the 9th annual Off-Road Antique Show.

â??We do appraisals throughout southeast Iowa for non-profit organizations to help that non-profit organizations raise funds for whatever they need,â?? appraiser Richard Alexander said.

Alexander and his partner estimated the Barkerâ??s oil painting is worth between $10,000 and $15,000.

â??I was hoping it might be worth something but didn't think that much,â?? Barker said.

However, the couple doesnâ??t plan on selling the painting anytime soon.

â??I think we'll keep it, unless we get to hurting in our old age,â?? he said laughing.

The appraisers also ran across a blue plate embedded in 14-karat gold, worth nearly $25,000.

â??The best part of our job is to be able to see what people bring to us,â?? Alexander said. â??It's incredible to see what people have in their homes and what they collect or what's been handed down to them from generation to generation.â??