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Old York Historical Society

Chest of Drawers attributed to Major Samuel Sewall of York, ca. 1760

Contributed by Old York Historical Society
MMN Item 11245 Item Details
Chest of Drawers attributed to Major Samuel Sewall of York, ca. 1760
MMN Item 11245 Zoom

Description

Flat front maple with pine secondary chest of drawers with distinctive serpentine front molded top and bracket base attributed to noted York cabinetmaker and engineer Major Samuel Sewall (1724-1812). The hardware is original. This chest is an important piece in Sewall's known work in that the outer left side of the lowermost drawer retains color samples of all of Sewall's known wood finishes, arranged in a "color card" sequence. The chest had been refinished to a light maple by its previous owners in the 1960s. The present dark mahogany color of the chest was restored based on surviving evidence and analysis of a dark stain within the color samples. Only two other chests by Sewall of this form are known and both are in the collections of the Old York Historical Society. The first, in strongly marked tiger maple, retains its original clear finish and brasses. The second retains its original orange color with a set of federal period oval barsses that replaced the original Chippendale style pulls about 1815.

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