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Photo: Courtesy The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1972.130
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Object number

RIF327

Maker

Maker attributed John Goddard, 1723/24–1785

Dimensions

Height: 88.27 cm (34 3/4 in.); Width, top: 93.35 cm (36 3/4 in.); Width, case: 87.95 cm (34 5/8 in.); Width, feet: 88.9 cm (35 in.); Depth, top: 54.61 cm (21 1/2 in.); Depth, case: 47.63 cm (18 3/4 in.); Depth, feet: 48.26 cm (19 in.); Height, top drawer: 12.38 cm (4 7/8 in.); Height, middle drawer): 16.83 cm (6 5/8 in.); Height, bottom drawer: 15.24 cm (6 in.)

Date

1755–1765

Current location

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Geography

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

Medium

Mahogany (primary); white pine (drawer runners and drawer stops); chestnut (all other secondary wood)

Inscriptions

"A" through "C," in chalk, on interior backs of drawers [top to bottom]; "A," in graphite, on top of drawer divider under upper drawer; "B," in graphite, on top of drawer divider under middle drawer; "C," in graphite, on top of front rail; "This chest of drawers with a marble top, known in the family as the marble slab, belonged to Robert Crooke before his marriage to Anne Wickham so dates at least to 1750 or probably much earlier. This couple were the great, great, great, great grandparents of Maurice and Robert Fagan, children of Christina and Maurice Fagan," typed on a paper label [20th century] glued to exterior back of top drawer

Style

Chippendale

Provenance

Robert Crooke (ca. 1701–1802) and his wife (née Anne Wickham, 1730–unknown), Newport, Rhode Island; by descent to their daughter Rebecca Wickham Crooke Wood (1771–1847), Newport, Rhode Island, and Lockport, New York; by descent to her daughter Rebecca W. C. W. Stanley (1810–1880), Le Roy, New York; by descent to her daughter Rebecca W. C. S. Falkner (1849–1895), Le Roy, New York; by descent to her daughter Rebecca W. C. F. Sutherland (1878–1926), Le Roy, New York; by descent to her daughter Christina Katharine Sutherland Fagan (1905–1982), New Canaan, Connecticut; by descent to her sons Maurice S. Fagan (1926–2010), New Canaan, Connecticut, and Naples, Florida, and Robert G. Fagan (1928–1975), Pittsford, New York; sold to Israel Sack, Inc., New York, ca. 1960; sold to Doris Fisher Gershenson (1915–2003 and Charles H. Gershenson (1900–1982), Detroit; sold to Israel Sack, Inc., by 1971; sold to The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1972

Associated names

Israel Sack, Inc.
Robert Crooke
Anne Wickham Crooke
Rebecca Wickham Crooke Wood
Rebecca W.C.W Stanley
Rebecca W.C.S Falkner
Rebecca W.C.F. Sutherland
Christina Katherine Sutherland Fagan
Maurice S. Fagan
Robert G. Fagan
Charles H. Gershenson
Doris Fisher Gershenson

Construction

The single-piece marble top has a molded and serpentine front, sides, and front corners, and is secured to the case in part by dowels atop the serpentine-front stiles. The three-board case sides are tenoned and wood-pinned to the stiles in front and meet the two-board case back in half-blind dovetail joints with pins of varying configuration and half pins above and below. The case sides are serpentine on their outside and straight on their inside faces. Each front leg and stile is formed of a single piece of wood. The board behind the top rail is half-blind dovetailed to the tops of the legs. The top rail has integral cockbeading. The drawer openings? vertical cockbeading is integral with a vertical board nailed with brads to the inside faces of the leg/stiles. The drawer dividers, with their integral cockbeading and accompanying shallow dustboards, are blind dovetailed into the leg/stiles. The bottom rail is tenoned and wood-pinned to the leg/stiles, and its cockbeading is attached from above with nails. The quarter round molding at its skirt is integral, except for an applied central portion. The quarter round case-side skirts are also integral. Drawer supports are half-lapped to the drawer dividers and set into grooves in the case back. Drawer guides are fixed with rosehead nails to the leg/stiles and sit at the outside edges of the supports, accompanied at the backboard by vertical rectangular drawer stops. The rear corners of the case sides are routed to receive the back legs. The kerf-marked drawer fronts, serpentine on their inside and outside faces, meet their nearly flush, arch-topped drawer sides in dovetail joints with finely cut pins of slightly varying configuration, with large half-pins above and small half-pins with rabbets below. The two-board full-width bottoms are perpendicular to the front, to which they are attached with rosehead nails. They are also fixed to the flat-topped drawer backs with rosehead nails, and to the sides with brads through full-depth runners. The back edges of the drawer-back tops are chamfered. The front legs have small knee brackets glued to and continuous with the front and side skirt quarter round moldings. The fronts of the knees are rounded, the backs are angular and the tendons, claws, and talons are deeply carved, grasping elongated ball feet. The rear legs are of the ?detachable? sort, set into the lower parts of the routed-out case sides, angular at the front and backs of the knees, with thick rounded ankles and shod pad feet with incised ankles. The rear legs have glued-on knee brackets at the front only; at the back their knees project beyond the plane of the case back. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, June 16, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.

Notes

Marble top

See also


Bibliography

American Antiques from Israel Sack Collection, 10 vols. (Washington, D.C.: Highland House Publishers, 1957–1989), vol. 3, pp. 728, 732–733, ill.; vol. 8, p. 2137, ill.
"Editorial," Antiques 82, no. 6 (December 1962): 618–619, frontispiece, ill.
James Biddle, American Art from American Collections: Decorative Arts, Paintings, and Prints of the Colonial and Federal Periods from Private Collections, exh. cat. (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1963), 25, no. 47, ill.
Doris Fisher Gershenson, "Living with Antiques: The Detroit Home of Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Gershenson," Antiques 91, no. 5 (May 1967): 638.
Michael Moses, Master Craftsmen of Newport: The Townsends and Goddards (Tenafly, N.J.: MMI Americana Press, 1984), 44, fig. 1.29.
Morrison H. Heckscher, American Furniture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Late Colonial Period, The Queen Anne and Chippendale Styles (New York: Random House, 1985), 218–219, no. 140, ill.
Philip Zea, "The Serpentine Furniture of Colonial Newport," American Furniture (1999): 254-257, fig. 2, 4-5, 7.
Patricia E. Kane et al., Art and Industry in Early America: Rhode Island Furniture, 1650–1830, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2016), 224–227, no. 35.