"Neat and plain" style chairs, in contrast to elaborately carved high-style chairs, formed the mainstay of many cabinetmakers' businesses in colonial Virginia, offering customers a more affordable, yet still fashionable, seating option. This example, which has no association with the Washington family, features a heart-and-ribs pierced splat, a pattern particularly favored by cabinetmakers from the Fredericksburg, Virginia area.
Side chair with an uncarved, arched crest rail and scrolled ears, a pierced heart-and-ribs splat seated within a beaded shoe, a trapezoidal seat frame with rounded top edges, and straight, square or Marlborough front legs joined by side stretchers and a rear stretcher mounted higher between the rear legs. Crest and rear stiles are flat on front and rounded at back; circular through tenons; square rear legs and feet below the seat rail. Flat-arched, horizontally shaped rear seat rail with integral shoe. Stiles tenoned into crest and secured with a single peg; side and rear seat rails single-pegged.
The medial stretcher is missing. Extensions have been added to the rear legs.
Trapezoidal slip-seat frame upholstered in a neutral linen; a black synthetic spun-bonded textile covers the bottom of the slip-seat.
Overall (H x W x D): 39 in. x 21 in. x 17 1/2 in. (99.06 cm x 53.34 cm x 44.45 cm)
Gift of Dandridge M. Gray, 1986
Inscribed on the inside of the rear seat rail: "IV".
Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here