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Photo: Courtesy Steve Macfarlane collection; photo by Jim Bartsch
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Dressing bureau

Object number



Maker, attributed to Joseph Rawson and Son, active 1808–26


72 1/2 × 38 × 21 in. (184.15 × 96.52 × 53.34 cm)



Current location

Private Collection


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


Mahogany (primary); chestnut, pine, yellow poplar (secondary)




"This dressing bureau was / a part of the outfit of / Mary Wheaton when she / married Thomas Rivers / The MW in chalk was / put there by her Father / Seth Wheaton," in ink, on paper label glued inside a drawer; "Mary Wheaton Rivers / Providence 1813 / Made by Rawson," in ink, on rectangular paper label with canted corners and red border in proper right small drawer


Commissioned by Col. Seth Wheaton (1759–1827), Providence, Rhode Island, for the marriage of his daughter Mrs. Thomas Rivers (née Mary Wheaton, 1793–1871), Charleston, South Carolina, and Providence, Rhode Island; by descent to Robert Wheaton Rivers (1882–1945), Brookline, Massachusetts, and Santa Barbara, California; by descent to his wife Rosalie Channing Rivers (died 1963), Santa Barbara, California; David Stockwell, Inc., Wilmington, Delaware, 1972

Associated names

Thomas Rivers
Mary Wheaton
David Stockwell, Inc.
Colonel Seth Wheaton
Robert Wheaton Rivers
Rosalie Channing Rivers

See also


"David Stockwell, Inc., advertisement," Antiques 102, no. 1 (July 1972): 1, ill.
Eleanore Bradford Monahon, "The Rawson Family of Cabinetmakers in Providence, Rhode Island," Antiques 118, no. 1 (July 1980): 140, fig. 12.
Christopher P. Monkhouse and Thomas S. Michie, American Furniture in Pendleton House (Providence: Rhode Island School of Design Museum, 1986), 67–68, referenced in cat. 14 entry, fig. no illus.
Christie's, New York, Important American Furniture, Silver, Prints, Folk Art, and Decorative Arts, sale cat. (January 15–16, 1999), 187, referenced in catalog entry for lot 729.
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), 113n44, 439n4.