image of object
Photo: Courtesy Winterthur Museum and Country Estate, Del., 1958.0018.001
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Chest of drawers

Object number



Maker, possibly by Edmund Townsend, American, 1736/7–1811
Maker Unknown


Height: 32 in. (81.28 cm) Width, top: 35 3/4 in. (90.805 cm) Width, case: 34 in. (86.36 cm) Width, feet: 37 in. (93.98 cm) Depth, top: 20 5/16 in. (51.594 cm) Depth, case: 18 7/8 in. (47.943 cm) Depth, feet: 21 in. (53.34 cm)



Current location

Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library


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


Mahogany (primary); white pine (secondary)




“1” through “3,” in graphite, on tops of drawer supports [top to bottom]; “Bottom,” in graphite, on interior bottom board; “Front Top,” in graphite, on underside of top at front rail


Jonas and Abigail West Minturn, Bristol, Rhode Island; by descent to their daughter, Gertrude Minturn Sanford (1850–unknown), Bristol; by descent to her daughter, Mrs. William Wallbridge and Mr. William K. Wallbridge, Short Hills, New Jersey; given to the Winterthur Museum, Delaware, 1958

Associated names

Jonas Minturn
Abigail West Minturn
Gertrude Minturn Sanford
Mrs. William K. Wallbridge
William K. Wallbridge


The solid board top, which has ogee-molded edges and overhangs the front and sides of the case, with a short overhang at the back, is attached with rosehead nails to a full subtop. The subtop is nailed at the ends to horizontal cleats nailed to the case sides. Below the top a cavetto molding is nailed to the front and sides of the case. The horizontal drawer blades, or dividers, which are backed with pine and beaded at the front edge, are attached to the case dies with exposed dovetails. The top and bottom rails of the case front are also dovetailed, the top joints concealed. Vertical beads are the inside faces of the case sides are applied. Runners nailed or glued inside the case sides support three drawers. The sides and bottom of the case are joined with dovetails. A mitered ogee molding is attached with nails to the base of the case at the front and sides, and a quarter-round molding is nailed between the legs at the front and sides. The ogee-bracket feet are formed of two mitered facing pieces reinforced on the inside surface with vertical and horizontal glue blocks and shaped boards at the back. The case back, consisting of two horizontal lap-jointed boards, is set into rabbets and secured with rosehead nails on all edges. The drawers are dovetailed at the corners. The thin sides are roughly rounded at the top; the back are chamfered at the forward and rear edges. The drawer bottoms, which run from front to back and are chamfered on three sides, are set into sliding dados on the front and sides and nailed flush at the back. The projecting shells of the top drawer are applied; the inside surface is flat. The other drawer fronts are worked from solid wood and blocked inside and out. Source: Nancy E. Richards and Nancy Goyne Evans, New England Furniture at Winterthur: Queen Anne and Chippendale Periods(Winterthur, Del.: Winterthur Publications, 1997), 366.

See also


Nancy E. Richards and Nancy Goyne Evans, New England Furniture at Winterthur: Queen Anne and Chippendale Periods (Winterthur, Del.: Winterthur Publications, 1997), 365–366, no. 180, Winterthur accession no. 58.18.1, ill.
Charles F. Hummel, "Queen Anne and Chippendale Furniture in the Henry Francis du Pont Winterthur Museum, Part III.," Antiques 99, no. 1 (January 1971): 102, fig. 8.
David Stockwell, "American Blockfront Furniture," America in Britain 9, no.2 (May 1971): 12–15, ill.