A century of service.
Our story begins in the 1920s when J. Norman DuMouchelle, a descendant of French-Canadian farmers, moved to Detroit after serving in World War I. There, he studied under renowned fine art dealer Emil Dittrich on Washington Boulevard.
In 1927, J. Norman opened “The Art Salon” in a historic Jefferson Avenue home, conducting weekly fine art auctions. As his auctions grew, he relocated to another historic site on Woodward Avenue. But it wasn’t long before his success required an auxiliary space in the Albert Kahn-designed building at 409 East Jefferson.
By 1934, The Art Salon Auction Galleries had become a Detroit fixture. J. Norman and his wife Charlotte raised five children – Lawrence, Norman, Rosemary, Joan, and Ernest. The siblings spent their early years working in the gallery, gaining first-hand expertise about art and antiques.
Legacies, Big and Small
For decades, our family has handled estates for Detroit luminaries like the Fishers, Whitneys, Seyburns, Youngs, and Dodge Wilsons. But our proudest service is advising everyday families on preserving their legacies. As Lawrence DuMouchelle, eldest son, and past president of the business said, prior to his passing in 2019, that the family always felt it was an honor and privilege to be entrusted to handle any family’s estate.
Today, we’ve grown into one of the world’s largest family-owned auction houses. We offer comprehensive fine art and antique auctions to a global audience. By adapting with the markets while staying true to our roots, we’ve thrived for nearly a century.
Our success stems from serving local customers with the same care we give international clients. We continue to offer items for all tastes and budgets. Behind each piece lies a unique story that makes art collecting so rewarding.
Your Trusted Art Advisor
As your trusted art advisor, we provide appraisals, collection management, buying, selling, and everything in between. We look forward to welcoming seasoned collectors, interior designers, institutions, and newcomers alike into the DuMouchelles experience. Our passion is sharing our expertise to guide you on your art collecting journey.
J. Norman DuMouchelle founds “The Art Salon” after working for longtime art dealer, Emil Dittrich. He would conduct sales at private residences.
A Permanent Location
J. Norman DuMouchelle rents the first floor of 409 East Jefferson. The Albert-Kahn designed building would become purchased for our permanent gallery location.
A New Name
J. Norman DuMouchelle officially renames the company from “The Art Salon” to “DuMouchelle Art Galleries.”
David C. Whitney
The estate of David C. Whitney, son of prominent lumber baron, and developer of the iconic David Whitney Building in Detroit, is auctioned off at the Whitney Mansion in Grosse Pointe, MI.
A New President
J. DuMouchelle passes, and Lawrence DuMouchelle follows in his father’s footsteps, becoming the company’s second president at the tender age of 22.
One visit among many, celebrity pianist Liberace visits DuMouchelles, and heads home with a van load of fine art and antiques from DuMouchelles.
Meadow Brook Hall is Auctioned
DuMouchelles handles the estate of Matilda Dodge Wilson, former Lieutenant Governor of the state of Michigan and widow of John Francis Dodge, co-founder of the Dodge Motor Car Company. Amongst a great many rare and unique pieces, an original Winslow Homer was auctioned for $240,000 ($1.6M in 2023 USD).
DuMouchelles handles the estate of prominent Arab-American fashion designer and entrepreneur, Ruth Joyce. Clients included members of the Ford family, Dinah Shore, and Detroit’s Miss America, Pam Eldred. 475 lots of gowns and bolts of fabric would be auctioned.
John F. Gordon
The estate of late General Motors Corporation President, John F. Gordon, would be auctioned from his palatial estate in Bloomfield Hills, MI.
Stella Ford Schlotman
DuMouchelles hosts an auction of the estate of Stella Ford Schlotman, founder of the DSO and wife to the late Joseph B. Schlotman, a socially prominent industrialist, at Stonehurst, a 40-room, $2,000,000 mansion ($47,000,000 in 2023 USD) in Grosse Pointe.
An Original Remington
From the attic of a Lansing estate, an original Frederick Remington bronze, entitled “Cheyenne”, is auctioned off and sold to a New York collector for over $605,000 ($1.5M in 2023 USD).
Coleman A. Young
DuMouchelles auctions the estate of prominent former Detroit Mayor Coleman A. Young, including his 1996 Cadillac, fine jewelry, African tribal art, and other personal effects.
A Change of Hands
After a heroic battle with cancer, Lawrence “Larry” DuMouchelle passes, and Joan DuMouchelle Walker would become the company’s third President.
DuMouchelles handles the estate of Bob Schwiezer, proprietor of Schweizer’s Restaurant, a German restaurant that became a Detroit institution during its nearly 130-year existence.
DuMouchelles handles the estate of Former Michigan Senator and Founder of the Michigan Council for the Arts, Jack Faxon. Over 2,000 items would be auctioned from the estate.
DuMouchelles handles the estate of the discerning collector of over five decades, Leon Zielinski. A plethora of fine estate jewelry, porcelain plaques, decorative art, and works from Zoltan Sepeshy, Rockwell Kent, and many others would be offered for months to come.