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Side chair

Object number



Maker John Townsend, American, 1732/33?1809


38 1/2 21 3/8 17 1/2 in. (97.79 54.293 44.45 cm)



Current location



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


Mahogany (primary); birch, maple, white pine, yellow poplar (?) and chestnut (secondary)


"Made by John Townsend/Newport 1800" in ink on a paper label glued inside rear seat rail


"reframed Dec 16 1890 by Cutler L. Vose at Boston Mass A H Davenport 96 Wash St," in graphite, on one seat brace


Hepplewhite, Federal


Admiral Stephen B. Luce (1827–1917), Newport, Rhode Island. Hyman Grossman, Boston. John S. Walton, Inc., New York; sold to Joseph K. Ott (1929–1994), Providence, Rhode Island, 1966; by descent to his wife Anne Ott, Providence, Rhode Island; consigned to Christie's, New York, January 20, 2012, lot 156

Associated names

Admiral Stephen B. Luce
Descendants of Admiral Luce
Hyman Grossman
John S. Walton, Inc.
Joseph K. Ott
Anne Northrop Ott

Related objects

See also


Joseph K. Ott, "John Townsend: A Chair and Two Tables," Antiques 94, no. 3 (September 1968): 388–389, fig. 1.
Joseph K. Ott, "Some Rhode Island Furniture," Antiques 107, no. 5 (May 1975): 941, fig. 5.
Wendy A. Cooper, In Praise of America: American Decorative Arts, 1650–1830, Fifty Years of Discovery since the 1929 Girl Scouts Loan Exhibition (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1980), 22, 28, pl. 5, fig. 28.
Morrison H. Heckscher, John Townsend: Newport Cabinetmaker, exh. cat. (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2005), 180, detail of label.
Christie's, New York, The Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph K. Ott, sale cat. (January 20, 2012), 66–69, lot 156.
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), 92n32.