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Photo: Courtesy Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library, Del., 1959.2648
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Tilt-top table

Object number



Maker Unknown


Height: 28 1/4 in. (71.76 cm) Top: 33 32 1/4 in. (83.82 81.92 cm) Width, feet: 20 1/4 in. (51.44 cm)



Current location

Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library


Probably made in Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)


Mahogany (top, cabinet sides, drawer dividers, and drawer fronts, sides, and backs); astronium sp. [Goncalo alves] (legs); West Indies satinwood (columns); tropical hardwood (cleats); red cedar (original drawer backs)




"M.A. [Nor]ton / Loan," written in pencil, and "286.26," written in red crayon, on a red-bordered label, affixed to inside front of top drawer


By descent in the Davis family, Plantsville, Connecticut. Malcom A. Norton, Hartford, Connecticut; by descent to his son-in-law Walter A. Crabtree, before 1932; sold to Henry Francis du Pont (1880–1969), Winterthur, Delaware, 1932; given to Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library, Delaware, 1960

Associated names

Davis family
Malcolm A. Norton
Walter A. Crabtree
Henry Francis du Pont


The tabletop is made of a wide board pieced at one side with a 6 3/4" strip cut from the same log. The molded rim is cut from solid wood, and there is an incised bead on the lower outside surface of the edge. The top tilts vertically. A pair of trapezoidal-shape cleats, rounded on the ends and bottom, are screwed to the underside of the top. Between them is a thick triangular block with round tenons that forms the plate for the enclosed, slightly concave-sided triangular cabinet. The three-quarter full columns at each corner are screwed to the block from the top and rest on the platform. Behind each of the front columns there are full-length triangular blocks to which the framing for the door is nailed. Beaded on two edges, a hinged door, cut slightly shorter than the sides to clear the cleats, opens to reveal a series of five graduated triangular drawers. The drawer fronts are cut in a concave block; the sides are nailed to rabbets in the front and across the back; the bottoms, rabbeted at the front, are nailed over the sides and back. The raised, thumbnail-molded panels on the sides of the platform are cut from solid wood and are shaped on the lower edge. The legs are dovetailed to the platform below, the joints covered with a Y-shape iron brace held with modern screws. Source: Nancy E. Richards and Nancy Goyne Evans, New England Furniture at Winterthur, (Winterthur, Del.: Winterthur Publications, 1997), 279.


Mahogany: top, cabinet sides, platform, drawer fronts, sides, bottoms, and blades between drawers Astronium [goncalo alves]: legs Satinwood: columns Tropical hardwood: cleats red cedar: drawerbacks

See also


Nancy E. Richards and Nancy Goyne Evans, New England Furniture at Winterthur: Queen Anne and Chippendale Periods (Winterthur, Del.: Winterthur Publications, 1997), 278–79, no. 147, ill.
Sarah Neale Fayen, "Tilt-Top Tables and Eighteenth-Century Consumerism," American Furniture (2003): 120, fig. 36.
Wallace Nutting, Furniture Treasury (New York: MacMillan Company, 1963), no. 1314, ill.
Joseph Downs, American Furniture: Queen Anne and Chippendale Periods in the Henry Francis DuPont Winterthur Museum (New York: MacMillan Company, 1952), no. 384, ill.
Malcolm A. Norton, "The Cabinet Pedestal Table," Antiques 4, no. 4 (November 1923): 224–25, fig. 2.
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), 327n1.