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Grand Piano

1998.299.1-.2 (RS32730)

Description

Grand piano, cocked-hat form. with scallop-edged top. Rosewood. Fret-worked music stand with foliate detail. Grape leaf applique sides. Acanthus leaf cabriole legs on casters; lyre pedal support. Canvas cover fitted for top. Rests on cabriole legs with scroll feet.

Details

Label
This grand piano in the "cocked hat" style was made by Hallett & Cumston, Boston. Part of the original house furnishings purchase by Captain Richard Tucker Jr. and installed in a prominent place in the parlor, the piano was an important part of family entertainment for themselves, friends, and visitors. Mollie had significant musical talent, playing not only the piano but also the mandolin. She wrote a song called "The Tryst."
Used in Cherished Possessions 2002-2005: This Boston-made grand piano cost Richard and Mollie Tucker $600 when they purchased it in 1858 to furnish their new home in Wiscasset, Maine. The piano was both an impressive piece of furniture and a symbolic addition. In many middle-class households in Victorian America, the piano replaced the hearth as the center of the home. The instrument came to represent achievement, refinement, and taste. It also meant something more-the piano signified the chaste and virtuous home, the symbolic opposite of the degradation and depravity of life in the teeming industrial world outside.
Maker
Hallett & Cumston (Maker)
Date
1858
Inscriptions
Painted above keyboard: ""Hallet & Cumston./ Boston""
Location of origin
Boston, MA, USA
Associated Building
Original to Castle Tucker (Wiscasset, Me.).
Material
ivory (tooth component)
oak (wood)
rosewood (wood)
Object type
Musical T&E; Musical Instruments
Places
Massachusetts (United States)
Descriptive terms
grand pianos
Instrument, Keyboard
ivory (tooth component)
oak (wood)
Piano
Piano, Grand
rosewood (wood)
Dimensions
38 3/4 x 68 x 60 1/2 (HxWxD) (inches)
Accession Number
1998.299.1-.2
Credit Line
Gift of Miss Jane S. Tucker
GUSN
20075

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