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Old 10th June 2024, 08:35 PM   #1
M ELEY
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Default An old Windsor chair with provenance

I found this at a local antique shop and bought it when I saw the underlying inscription. This is a nice American pattern bowback Windsor side chair, ca. 1790-1800, of the early 'bamboo' form with exaggerated segmented back slats/legs.

Written on the bottom of the chair in old iron ink is an inscription attributing it to 'Gov I. Tichenor' from his dining room. Isaac Tichenor was a very colorful American, serving in the Vermont militia alongside the likes of Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys. He was present during the Battle of Bennington. Later in the war, he served directly under General Washington as a 'pecuniary' officer, a distinction he later said was an embarrassment to him (having to collect war funds, selling off stuff for such and probably confiscating materials from folks who would be paid back after the war, etc).

After the Am Revolution, he became the 3rd and 5th governor of Vermont after that territory gained statehood. He apparently clashed with his past kinsmen on political issues, specifically the 'Allen' clan. He got into a duel with Ira Allen (Ethan's younger brother0, was shot, but survived and didn't press any charges!! He was a quick-witted man who apparently many folks in the Vermont senate both quoted and told stories about. His mansion was in Bennington (recently sold a few years ago to a private owner) and this chair apparently was from his diningroom. An online search of this type-Windsor found an exact matching set from the verenda at Mt. Vernon!

My further research turned up another pattern Windsor from Tichenor's estate marked on the bottom (as is mine) in old ink describing its previous owner. This other chair is in the permanent collection of the Bennington History Museum in Vermont.
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Last edited by fernando; 11th June 2024 at 11:37 AM. Reason: Putting this chair upright
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Old 10th June 2024, 08:37 PM   #2
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Default A few more...

Note the exaggerated spindles made to resemble cane or bamboo. Later types of this pattern had far less exaggerated 'joints'.
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Old 11th June 2024, 11:47 AM   #3
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Great find, Mark.
So much history and all connected to a chair!

Congrats!
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Old 11th June 2024, 01:54 PM   #4
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Thanks for sharing! An amazing find that proves that sometimes ,with a little leg work , a good eye and a lot of luck, there are still treasures out there to be found.
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Old 11th June 2024, 02:11 PM   #5
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Thank you Drac2k, for commenting. It's the only thing I ever found with a paper trail/provenance and I'm happy to have it even though it's not a sword! A cool piece of history, though-
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Old 11th June 2024, 02:16 PM   #6
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Thanks, CC! I was hoping the inscription would pan out and then I found the proof in the Bennington Museum. These Windsors have always spoken to me. the so-called 'stick furniture' of the common man and country cottage. While originating in England, they were immensely popular in colonial America and there is a contemporary painting of some of the signers of the Declaration in Philadelphia all sitting on Windsors-
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Old 12th June 2024, 09:00 PM   #7
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You are welcome M ElEY;I think that swords are just the tip of the iceberg for many of us.
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Old 13th June 2024, 12:49 AM   #8
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This is a phenomenal chair, not only as a wonderful example of this chair form, but for its historic provenance. As well noted by CC and Drac, while we of course study history itself via the weapons which are iconic examples associated with events, persons, places , and items of other character add dimension and context to these studies.

As always Capn, your astute and discerning eye finding these kinds of items give us great opportunities to experience these exciting historic times, thank you for sharing it here!!!

To the books!
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Old 13th June 2024, 04:43 AM   #9
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Thanks for commenting Jim and for the compliment! It's ture that many of our passions for the study of weapons/wars/battle strategies and people often lead us down many roads. Since embracing maritime history, I've found myself reading up on everything from Dutch onion bottles, navigational tools, optics, old maps, uses for whale oil, etc, etc!!! In any case, definately part of the journey for all of us is in the research. Back to the books indeed!
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