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Dressing table


Object number

RIF643

Maker

Maker Job Townsend, Jr., 1726 - 1778

Dimensions

78.105 x 90.805 x 57.785 cm (30 3/4 x 35 3/4 x 22 3/4 in.)

Date

1755–1785

Current location

Private collection

Geography

Made in Newport, Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Mahogany and white pine

Marks

"Job Townsend," in graphite, on interior bottom of upper drawer

Inscriptions

"Back," in chalk, on interior of backboard; "1," in chalk, on proper left interior of backboard and "2," in chalk, on proper right interior of backboard; " 1," "2," "3," in chalk, at center of interior of each drawer back and on drawer sides at interior front corners

Style

Queen Anne

Provenance

Mrs. Francis B. Lothrop (1898–1986), Massachusetts. Christie's, New York, June 19, 1996, lot 113; sold to Leigh Keno, New York; sold to a private collection

Associated names

Mrs. Francis B. Lothrop
Christie's
Leigh Keno American Antiques

Construction

CASE. The one-piece top is attached to the case sides with blocks secured with glue and nails, one long one on each side and three each along the front rail and the backboard; a medial brace is nailed to the underside of the center blocks at the front and back. Nails driven from the back reinforce the joints of the backboard with the glue blocks and the medial brace. The sides and front of the top have an ogee molding; the back edge of the top is flat and overhangs the case at the back; moldings are applied to the case sides and front below the top. The underside of the top has evidence of a toothing plane. Half-blind dovetails fasten the one-piece backboard to the one-piece case sides with half pins at the top and bottom and eight full dovetails between them. The joints of the skirt, drawer divider, and top rail with the sides are covered with veneer. The legs are fastened to the case sides with vertical blocks. DRAWERS. On the upper drawer half-blind dovetails fasten the front to the drawer sides with a half pin at the top and bottom and two full dovetails between them. The grain of the bottom runs from side to side; the bottom is let into a rabbet at the drawer front and is nailed to the sides and back. On the lower drawers the drawer guides for the inner sides and the medial drawer supports are dovetailed to the skirt and tenoned into the back. Half-blind dovetails fasten the drawer fronts to the sides with half pins at the top and bottom and two full dovetails between them. The bottoms of the lower drawers fit into a groove in the drawer front and are nailed to the undersides of the sides and back; running strips are added along the sides. The top edges of the drawer sides are rounded and almost flush with the top of the drawer fronts; the back edges of the drawers are flat with a slight chamfer along the back. The kerf marks on all the drawers are of average length and thickness. Examined by P. E. Kane and W. S. Braznell, September 29, 2004.

Bibliography

"Christie's, New York, advertisement," Antiques 149, no. 5 (May 1996): 658–659.
Christie's, New York, Important American Furniture, Silver, Folk Art, and Decorative Arts, sale cat. (June 19, 1996), 56–57, lot 113.