To Barbara Eash “an antique is a memory you can hold in your hand.” The antiques expert based out of Waukesha said she has been fascinated with all things from the past since she was a small child admiring her great grandmother’s pump organ. “It was breathtaking for a 5 year old,” she said.
Certified by Appraisers Guild of America, Eash has extensive experience appraising, writing, and speaking about antiques and collectables.
As a reputable appraiser, she supplies written legal documents, can serve as an expert witness in court and has made a number of appearances as a program speaker.
She specializes in furniture, ivory, lamps, textiles, dolls, tribal art, clocks, toys, costume jewelry and decorative arts, among other valuables. Though rare and interesting pieces from the past keep her job exciting, it is the people that bring Eash the most fulfillment.
She is more widely known for her roles as coordinator for Milwaukee Public Television’s Annual Appraisal Fair, University of Wisconsin-Waukesha Continuing Education antiques instructor and is a regular columnist for the Waukesha Freeman and other publications.
“The rarest moment for me is not when the item is being appraised, it’s that we are allowed to step into family histories,” she said.
For anyone looking to begin a collection, Eash offers some friendly advice: “Do not tell anyone about your collection, it gives gifting ideas to well meaning people,” she said, adding, “If bitten by the collectors bug, no vaccination will help.