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Antique Furniture/Antique mystery chair


Antique chair
Antique chair  
" picked up this chair at an estate sale, they said that it had been passed around their family for a long time and estimated it to be around 200 years old.. I'm not sure if I believe that, so I'm just curious if you could tell me anything about this chair's history. It does appear to be quite old and well made, although the whole bottom is stuffed with hay and the springs in the chair are held in place by tangled twine. I'm in the process of reupholstering it, I just think it's a great conversation piece and it's story deserves to be known. I can give you more pictures if needed. Thanks a bunch, I look forward to hearing back from you!


This is a manufactured chair from 1900-1915.  The wood is birch and figured birch which was stained at the factory with a water based dye to resemble mahogany.

The style is empire style.  to say empire without the word style or revival indicates that it was made in the empire period which it was not.  it has become fashionable by auctioneers to refer to this as second (1880+)or third period empire (1920+) but there is overlap so i dont go with that.  I use either empire style or empire revival.

The fabric might be leather but it is more likely that it is imitation leather which was more common from 1875 onwards.

The springs would be attached to webbing then tied front to back, side to side and diagonal, padded with horse hair, pig hair, hay, sugar cane fodder, or whatever elase might have been available in quantity.

These are well made, heavy and it was part of a parlor set at one time.  

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robert klein


Regarding American antique, vintage, and collectible furniture I can help with wood identification, styles, age, periods, historical coatings, materials, techniques, repair, restoration, refinishing. Please read instructions for posting.


I have been in the antiques furniture and restoration business and in the sales of American antique furniture for 40+ years and have continued my education in the trade attending workshops and seminars through several organizations.

Professional Refinishers Groop, Int., AIC, Antiques Dealers Association

BA Florida State University BA University of West Florida 1971

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They deserve privacy, sorry.

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