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Rocking chair with serpentine crest, upholstered back and seat. Open arms on "C" shaped inlayed supports. Removable upholstered slip seat. Chair seat fitted with circular cut out for a chamber pot. Chair rests on squared inlaid legs on rockers.
white pine (wood)
Displayed in the "Newbury Furniture" exhibition at SPNEA's One Bowdoin Square Gallery, May 2, 2000 through October 6, 2000. "This rocking chair, whose removable slip seat concealed a potty hole, was almost certainly a custom order, perhaps made for an invalid. The chair is labeled by the Newburyport furniture maker Joseph Short and is inscribed with the date 1806. Rocking chairs had been in use at least since the middle of the eighteenth century, but this may be one of the earliest surviving dated rocking chairs. Although rockers were often added to chairs some time after they were made, the way the chair legs are tenoned into the rockers suggest that these are the original."
"JOSEPH SHORT" (On label)
"WARRANTED / CABINET WORK / OF ALL KINDS, MADE AND SOLD BY, / JOSEPH SHORT. / At his Shop, Merrimack Street Between / Market Square and Brown's Wharf / NEWBURYPORT / ALL orders for Works will be gratefully / received and punctually executed." (Printed paper label )
"West Bedroom ?... John Boardman / 1806" (Handwritten script on printed paper label)
Original to Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm (Newbury, Mass.),
Short, Joseph, 1771-1819 (Maker)
Newburyport, MA, USA, Essex County
42 1/2 x 25 x 34 (HxWxD) (inches)
Bequest of Amelia W. Little
Massachusetts (United States)