Desk-on-frame

Date: 1690–1720

Geography: Made in New York, New York, United States

Culture: American

Medium: Sweet gum, possibly mahogany veneer, yellow poplar

Dimensions: 35 1/4 x 33 3/4 x 24 in. (89.5 x 85.7 x 61 cm)

Classification: Furniture

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1944

Accession Number: 44.47

Description

An early inscription in Dutch inside the lid recording a business transaction points to a New York origin for this desk, which is reputed to have been found in Brooklyn in the early 1900s. The use of gumwood, a wood that found favor in New York City and environs for furniture and interior woodwork during the early decades of the eighteenth century, supports such an attribution. No comparable piece is known. Although this desk was originally owned by a New York family of Dutch ancestry, the turnings appear to derive from French prototypes, and it may well have been made by a Huguenot-émigré craftsman working in New York.

Related