Elegant, versatile, and convenient furnishings, card tables were generally placed in rooms used for entertaining. Easily moved about a room, most comfortably accommodated two to four people who utilized them for a variety of tabletop games in addition to cards. Family history maintains this elegantly-shaped, concertina-action example was purchased from the estate of Martha Washington's granddaughter, Eliza Parke Custis Law, but whether the Washingtons originally owned it is debatable.
Concertina-action, square card table with mahogany-veneered serpentine and ovolo front, serpentine sides, and turret or ovolo corners on four cabriole legs with leaf-carved knees and ogee knee blocks terminating in ball-and-claw feet; conforming, two-board top with rounded edges meets in a butt joint and is secured with brass hinges at sides, no leaf-edge tenons; overhanging fixed board probably screwed to frame; interior of top features a relieved playing surface covered in green baize and four carved counter wells set towards the right end of each side; concertina-action frame with blocked front and side rails, a veneered, solid rear rail, and three-part, triple-hinged side rails which fold inward; the bottom inside edge of the side rails has a dado or groove to hold a board, chamfered along its edges, which slides over to act as a support when the table is open; knees are carved in low relief with an asymmetrical bound sheaf of leaves.
Mahogany (legs, top, knee blocks, veneer), red pine (block front, corner blocks, interior side rails, dust board), white oak (underside of lower leaf, front and rear rails), wool
Overall (closed): 28 1/2 in. x 37 1/4 in. x 18 1/4 in. (72.39 cm x 94.62 cm x 46.36 cm)
Gift of Mrs. George R. Goldsborough, Vice Regent for Maryland, 1897
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