Christian Michael Nestell, 1793–1880; worked 1820–1836


chairmaker; chair store; painter


Providence, Rhode Island

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Christian Michael Nestell was born Febraury 10, 1793 to Christian I. Nestell (died 1822 or 1823) and Mary (Swan) Nestell. His father was a German emigre and flour merchant. He studied ornamental painting in New York City in in 1811-1812, but was active as a chair maker, merchant, and ornamental painter in Providence by 1820. On February 26 of 1820 he advertised in the Providence Patriot that, "he has on hand a general assortment of painted and gilt Windsor chairs."

In 1821, he married Elizabeth Horton Bosworth (died 1822) of Providence, daughter of Asa Bosworth. An active Freemason, Masonic Lodge 37 in Providence was dubbed "Nestell Lodge" after his February, 1880 death in Providence.(1)

Benjamin W. Colman

1. Nancy Goyne Evans, "The Christian M. Nestell Drawing Book: A Focus on the Ornamental Painter and His Craft in Early Nineteenth-Century America," American Furniture (1998): 99-107.