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Photo: Courtesy The Chipstone Foundation, Fox Point, Wis., accession no. 1980.1; photo by Gavin Ashworth
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Backstool


Object number

RIF952

Maker

Maker Unknown

Dimensions

40 21 25 in. (101.6 53.34 63.5 cm)

Date

1740–60

Current location

The Chipstone Foundation

Geography

Probably made in Massachusetts, formerly said to have been made in Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Walnut (primary); maple (seat rails and crest rail); beech (stiles and lower back rail)

Marks

None

Inscriptions

None

Style

Queen Anne

Provenance

John S. Walton, Greenwich, Connecticut, by 1949. Winsor White (1901–1975), Plymouth, Massachusetts. Edgar William Garbisch (1899–1979) and Bernice Chrysler Garbisch (1907–1979), Cambridge, Maryland; consigned by their estate to Sotheby Parke Bernet, Inc., New York, (sale held Cambridge, Maryland), May 23–25, 1980, lot 1120; sold to Polly Mariner Stone (1898–1995) and Stanley Stone (1896–1987), Milwaukee, Wisconsin; bequeathed by Stanley Stone to The Chipstone Foundation, Fox Point, Wisconsin, 1987

Associated names

John S. Walton
Winsor White
Edgar William Garbisch
Bernice Chrysler Garbisch
Sotheby Parke Bernet
Polly Mariner Stone
Stanley Stone

Construction

The raking stiles are tenoned and fastened with rosehead nails to the arched crest rail. The bottom rail within the upholstered back is tenoned to the stiles without wood pins. The rear cabriole legs are continuous with a wedge-shaped upper extension, into which the rear seat rail is tenoned. The serpentine side seat rails are tenoned and wood-pinned to the bottom of the wedge atop the rear legs. The stiles are set into recesses in the top of the seat rails and fixed with rosehead nails to the wedges above the rear legs. The side seat rails are half-lapped and wood-pinned to the front seat rails. A quarter round extension of the front legs is visible through this joint. A turned rear stretcher is doweled into the rear legs. Flat serpentine side stretchers with molded outside upper corners are tenoned into the rear and front legs without wood pins. They are joined by a similarly molded serpentine medial stretcher with a scroll-carved center portion and a triangular repair at its proper left side. It is tenoned and glued to the side stretchers. Later incurvate blocks are screwed into the rear corners of the seat frame. Carved knee brackets are glued and fixed with rosehead nails at both sides of the front legs and at the forward sides of the rear legs. Behind the knee brackets at the front legs are carved glue blocks. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, May 16, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.

Bibliography

"John S. Walton advertisement," Antiques 55, no. 6 (June 1949): 407.
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, 1963), 4, no. 4, ill.
Sotheby Parke Bernet, New York, The Garbisch Collection, Volume Four: Important American Furniture and Related Decorative Arts, sale cat. (May 23–25, 1980), lot 1120, ill.
Oswaldo Rodriguez Roque, American Furniture at Chipstone (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1984), 118–119, no. 50, ill.
Oswaldo Rodriguez Roque, "Living with Antiques: Chipstone near Milwaukee," Antiques 133, no. 5 (May 1988): 1155, pl. XIX, ill.