It had been days since I looked at old furniture. I was in the early stages of withdrawal. Fortunately a local auction house had a preview that very day. I went and saw many wonderous things. And a few mundanes. And I took lots of PICTURES.
One desk caused me to stop and think for a bit. At first it didn’t make sense. I stared for a while and finally figured out what was going on. The only question now was if this was a creative correction of an oversight or was this the plan the whole time.
First look at this fall front desk:
Then I opened the top drawer for my usual dovetail shot and saw this:
And another view:
Stop and think about this for a minute. There are two sliding bolts on the inside of a drawer that can only be accessed when the drawer is open. Makes them a little less useful than one would hope.
Being a curious lad, I looked for an explanation. I examined the desk and finally came up with a working hypothesis.
Look at the gallery of the desk:
Like many similar desks, it has a sliding panel to allow you to quickly store your papers out of view.
The fall front has a lock. The drawer doesn’t. Papers would be secure in the gallery but not in the drawer. Then it occurred to me that you could slide the the blots locked through the sliding panel in the gallery. Just reach into the drawer from above and secure the drawer. How this is easier than moving papers into a drawer with a conventional lock escapes me, but, there you have
Back to my original question, was this a correction to an oversight or the way it was designed to work from the beginning? Wouldn’t it have been easier to just add a lock to the drawer? What do I know? Might just be the way it was done.
There were other pieces of interest at this auction including this chest with tambour and drawers:
Interesting details on the legs and upper carcass.
This desk looked just like one at a local antiques mall.
Seems when a local dealer died, their inventory was sold at auction
And finally there was this odd item.
Don’t remember what it is called and a Google image search turned up nothing. More once common items that have fallen from our collective consciences.
Oh well. To see the entire set from this auction, click THESE WORDS.