Help Identifying and Deciding on What to Do

Indigo_SkyeJune 13, 2012

I am no antique collector or anything, just an girl who likes to find interesting furniture and do-dads to refurbish and reuse. I came across these two chairs at a nearby thrift store recently and initially thought I would use them to create neat container gardens in the seats where the reeds have fallen through. They were only $4 each and are remarkably sturdy throughout and neither wobble. Well when I got them home and went to put them away I noticed some writing on the underside of one of the chairs. It appears to say "Miss Sally Drumond's - August 4, 1823". DANG! If that is real then these are DEFINITELY ANTIQUES. Now I can't bring myself to do what I intended to do with them. Yet I don't know anything about restoring them properly to keep their value (if there even is any) either. Any words of advice or ideas on the make / style of these chairs?

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yeah....don't put them in the yard with a plant in the seat!! LOL!
I think I am seeing 1873 as a date...which would be more likely....and those seats are really easy to do....the cane comes in a sheet and you just need to pry out the old spline and stretch the new cane in place and glue in a new piece of spline.
They have never been painted, so would be very east to re do with somethning like formbys....or not! The original finish looks good, but likely you would mess it up putting in a new seat.

Here is a link that might be useful: all you need to know about recaning a chair

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 3:26PM
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I thought I saw 1893........but that's not important, what is important is yes, they likely are antique and an appropriate style for that era. What Linda says. These look to be in great shape, and the new seat is not hard. You got lucky.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 4:27PM
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thank you both. I did actually look up how to re cane them and saw that it looks fairly simply to do. I was just unsure if repairing them that way would take away the value of the chairs, not that it I would turn around and sell them. They ARE in remarkably good shape and look like a little linseed oil or mineral oil just to restore the wood. I don't want to accidentally wash of the inscription though, that is what gives it so much mysterious charm to me.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 5:16PM
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The transcription appears to be in pencil.....won't wash off easily....but just the careful.
As an aside, my great grandmother who was born in 1855 lived with us when I was a kid. One day my father found a little pencil inscription on the outside of the house, neat writing....said Margaret VanDerHoof grandma's maiden name likely before 1875. When the house was painted, it was painted around.
Be careful of that inscription.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 5:44PM
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believe me, I will be careful of the inscription. I am intrigued by the name and date and have even tried to Google it to see if I could come up with anything, but no such luck yet to indicate that I have found her :)

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 5:49PM
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We have a chair very much like that one...they must have been very popular.

Indigo Skye, these things fascinate me...the autograph and date on the bottom of the chair. I subscribe to and would be glad to check Solly Dru in the 1870 census if you'd want to reveal the name of your state. No pressure. :)

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 3:20PM
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Evenshade, that would be great. I live in Taylors, SC but we all know that these sort of things can travel hundreds of miles from where they originated. The name on the chair reads Miss Sally Drumond, although the "a" in Sally is written backwards.

Here is a photo of the inscription itself.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 9:44AM
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Interesting it appears to be in two different handwritings- "Miss Sally Drummond" looks printed by a child or someone who hasn't had much practice at writing, while the date is in a more practised, adult cursive style.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 11:48AM
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I am guessing that Miss Sally wrote her name on the chair and her mother dated it!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 2:03PM
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funny colleenoz and Lindac, I noticed and thought the very same thing!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 3:13PM
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