At the tender age of six, Tom Queen started on his journey in the world of antiques and collectibles, when his mother encouraged him to start collecting old postage stamps as a means of occupying his time (as well as learning about world geography in the process). Born in Wheeling, West Virginia, and raised in North Canton, Ohio, he set up at his first flea market while still in high school, selling out of the trunk of his parents' 1966 Mustang. As time went on, the collecting of old bottles and advertising tins went by the wayside, and his interest turned into American country antiques, with a special fascination with the material culture of the American religious communal society known as the Shakers.
While doing as stint as a public health dentist in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, his interest in the handmade folk string instruments of the region was instilled, and some 25 years later, he served as the curator, exhibition designer and author of the catalog for "Appalachian Strings: The Instruments, Their Makers, The Music" at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio in Lancaster. This well-attended exhibition merged the worlds of American history and music, and included live performances during the course of its run.
Tom's interest in bringing history and design to an appreciative audience continues to this day, and he has curated and designed exhibits of Shaker objects for Shakertown at Pleasant Hill, Kentucky. As well, he served as the agent, catalog author and exhibition designer for the Ribic/Kingsley collection for Northeast Auctions of Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 2008. To this day, it remains the highest-grossing single auction of Shaker artifacts in history.
Tom feels that it is important to interpret antiques and history in the context of modern living environments. As well, he represents a select group of artists whose work is affordable, approachable, and fits in with both traditional and contemporary interiors. The home should be a place of comfort and visual appeal, and not the uninviting "hands-off" environment of a museum
And in keeping with the dramatic changes in the art and antiques business, Tom has provided his appraisal and collection liquidation services to downsizing collectors and the living heirs to the great generation of American collectors. He has always believed that collecting should be fun, and when the time comes to pass on one's collection to a future generation, the process should be painless and worry-free as well.