Continuing with my habit of taking a topic and flogging it until I kill whatever little interest there may be, I offer this blog. But first…
I spent a few days in meditation and reflection on my future as a blogger. For you see, I have betrayed your sacred trust and one of the essential core values of bloggers everywhere and provided false and possibly misleading information due to my lack of due diligence and proper research caused, in no small way, by my laziness and sloth. I decided to admit my shortcomings and go on IF you all are willing to forgive.
My transgression came in my last posting where in the caption of a photo, I claimed that this variant of a trifid foot was a “Philadelphia thing”. While true the trifid foot was used in Philadelphia area furniture, this was not a Philadelphia piece. I had a conversation with a friend of Glen Huey’s at Popular Woodworking and he said it looked more Irish or English than Philadelphian. Following up with his belief, I went back to the antiques dealer and saw that it was an “English 19th century George II style walnut side chair, drake foot at the front and pad at the rear”. I was chagrinned.
So you have no need to read Chuck Bender’s article in Popular Woodworking’s August 2012 issue on carving three different trifid feet.
Unless you like the trifid feet in the following pictures.
It all started in September, 2012 when I traveled north to take a class from a Philadelphia area furniture maker. (I understand the the instructor and school have since moved on.) Some friends had recommended the Biggs Museum of American Art in Dover, DE. My friends said it had an impressive collection of furniture. I arrived to discover that they had just completed the renovation of the second floor gallery. The furniture was about to be reinstalled and if I came back next Saturday, I could see it.
What was on display was a small collection Delaware area furniture in the Founder’s Hall. It was a very nice collection of furniture that was claimed to be among the oldest in their collection. There were three or four pieces with trifid feet. Among them are:
Below, notice the courage of the furniture maker to build a drawer front using a board with a knot. Look at the damage on the top right drawer. Anyone have an idea as to the cause of the damage? A group of us just toured the MESDA (Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts) collection in Old Salem and saw several drawers with similar damage, usually on the left side of the drawer.
Click HERE to see the rest of the furniture in Founder’s Hall at the Biggs Museum in Dover, DE.
Dover also is home to the Johnson Victrola Museum. I’ve known about it for years but never made the effort to go there. It is another museum that turns out to be more more interesting than I thought. Named for the inventor E.R Johnson, founder of the Victor Talking Machine Company, a pioneering company in the production of phonographs and phonograph recordings. Well worth the trip.