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FrontRunners: Twisting in the Wind

A circa-1850 weathervane fashioned in the form of a fireman pointing with an outstretched arm, colloquially known as Old Jake, will be one of the highlights of the annual Sotheby’s Important Americana auctions (www?.sothebys?.com), which will take place January 23 through 25 in New York. Made of painted copper, Old Jake measures more than 6 feet tall and 6 feet wide. Until recently, it had sat atop a Winchester, Va., fire station since just after the Civil War. The firefighters of Winchester are parting with the 150-year-old object to raise funds for new fire equipment and possibly the construction of a new firehouse. Old Jake has a presale estimated price of $3 million to $5 million.

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