Some early American crewelwork

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By FLORENCE PETO; from The Magazine ANTIQUES, May 1951. Eighteenth-century crewelwork, especially favored for bedspreads and bed furnishings, is one of the most delightful types of early American embroidery.  Though it has become very scarce, resolute seekers may still occasionally acquire a piece.      Tree of Life Design, crewelwork fragment with leaves, fruit, birds, insects, and caterpillar. New York Historical Society.   …

The small gardens of Colonial Williamsburg

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By THOMAS J. WERTENBAKER; from The Magazine ANTIQUES, October 1954. The woods near Williamsburg are glorious in April and May with the crimson magenta flowers of the Judas tree, and the white and pink of the dogwood. The sweet smelling honeysuckle covers fences, embankments, and stumps. And everywhere in the town itself one can note along streets and lanes, or peeping from …

Eighteenth-Century Jewelry

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By JOHN HAYWARD; from The Magazine ANTIQUES, April 1955. Most aspects of eighteenth-century arts and crafts have been the subject of detailed and exhaustive research in the course of the past fifty years. The jewelry of the period, however, has been somewhat neglected in favor of Renaissance jewelry (so called, though much of it dates from the first half of the seventeenth …

Philadelphia Empire furniture by Antoine Gabriel Quervelle

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By ROBERT C. SMITH; from The Magazine ANTIQUES, September 1964. French architects, painters, and craftsmen in the decorative arts played an important role in the development of the classical style in America during the second and third decodes of the nineteenth century. This is particularly true of a group of cabinetmakers who settled in New York and Philadelphia and included, among others, …

A desk associated with George Washington

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By JOAN SAYERS BROW; from The Magazine ANTIQUES May 1978. The  handsome slant-front desk illustrated here was originally owned by Colonel George William Fairfax (1724-1787), whose estate, Bevoir, was near Mount Vernon on the Potomac River in Virginia. In April 1773 Fairfax took his wife, sally Cary, to England, after asking his neighbor George Washington to watch over Belvoir while they were …

Skippets

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By J. S. BROWN; From The Magazine ANTIQUES, July 1978. Skippets are small boxes made to hold and protect pendent wax seals attached to important documents. Silver, silver-gilt, and gold examples were used by the United States government between 1815 and 1871, primarily on treaties with other countries that had been ratified by Congress. The skippet was suspended from the treaty by …

Two hoof spoons

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By ALBERT SCHER; from The Magazine ANTIQUES, September 1978.  When Helen Burr Smith wrote about silver spoons with hoof-shape terminals in ANTIQUES in 1944 there were only four of these interesting survivals from seventeenth-century Dutch New York households known in America. Now two more hoof spoons have come to light.   Fig. 1-Silver hoof spoon, probably New York, seventeenth century. Length 6 …

A Demonstration in Pewter Making

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By L. M. A. ROY [Originally published September 1949 ; posted in conjunction with Barrymore Laurence Scherer’s “American Pewter,” March/April 2013.] Mr. Roy’s model for this pictorial demonstration was John G. Herrock, “whose family,” he says,” were tinkering with tools from the time they came to Maine in 1799.”  Besides pewter, he makes violins, reproductions of colonial furniture, wrought iron, jewelry, and …