image of object
Photo: Courtsey Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts, Bequest of Isabel J. Turner, AC 1951.147.a & b
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Side chairs, pair

Object number



Maker John Carlile and Sons, active 1789?1803


36 21 17 1/2 in. (91.44 53.34 44.45 cm) Height, seat: 15 1/2 in. (39.37 cm)



Current location

Mead Art Museum, Amherst College


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




"MADE AND SOLD, BY / JOH[N CAR]LILE & SONS. / ALL [Kinds of Cabinet] Work done in the best Manner, and at the shortest / Notice, at their Shop, just Southward of the / Market, in Providence, State of Rhode- / Island, &c.," printed on paper lablel with decorative border affixed to interior seat rail of at least one chair


“213 / 1” and “212 / 2,” in graphite, on two white labels with red borders affixed to upper inside surface of proper-left legs [one on each chair]


Hepplewhite, Federal


Isabel J. Turner (died 1951); bequeathed to the Mead Art Gallery, Amherst College, 1951

Associated names

Isabel J. Turner


Each chair has an arched crest rail, molded in the front and rounded in the back, to which are tenoned the similarly molded and rounded stiles. The splat, tenoned into the bottom of the crest rail, consists of carved feathers on the rail above a reeded urn, from which depend leaf-carved swags, all within an upright ellipse, above five shaped uprights and a segmental fluted panel. The splat is flat in back. The bottom rail of the ?shield-back? is an element separate from and tenoned to the stiles. The side seat rails are through-tenoned to the leg/stiles, each joint showing a variety of wood pins, repairs, and filled nail holes, evidence of earlier overupholstery. The rear rail is tenoned to the leg/stiles, each joint showing one wood pin. The side, rear, and medial stretchers are tenoned, without wood pins, to their respective neighboring elements. The square rear legs rake rearward and inward below the seat, and are chamfered at their inside corners. The tapered front legs are molded on their outer faces and chamfered at their inside corners. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, May 2, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.


See RIF35

See also


Lewis A. Shepard, American Art at Amherst, exh. cat. (Middletown, Conn.: Wesleyan University Press, 1978), 246, ill.
Brian Cullity, Arts of the Federal Period, 1785–1825, exh. cat. (Sandwich, Mass.: The Heritage Plantation of Sandwich, 1989), 77, no. 82, ill.
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).