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Desks448 of 632Butlers desk drawer backs and feet photo ART DECO VANITY TABLE
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    Posted 7 years ago

    Firewalker…
    (3 items)

    I have this and it was a part of Martha Berry furniture.
    On back it has what appears to be furniture makers stamp and also hand painted shipping address to John Mason who was founder of Mentone Ga in 1830. He moved hear for mountain air and his health.

    Anyone have a clue of the furniture maker, value or type of piece this is? Looks like a stand up 4 drawer writing desk but not really sure how to describe it.

    Thanks for any help!!

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    Comments

    1. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Butlers desk.

      Most likely mid to late 19th century-- dovetail photos should confirm.

      It looks to have some repair work on the feet(??)-- is the top part of photo #4 the bottom of the piece?

      scott
    2. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Correction: is the top part of photo #3 the bottom of the piece?

      scott
    3. Firewalker918, 7 years ago
      The makers label is on back at top center.
      The John Mason name and address is on back at bottom. I inverted photo to make it easier to read.
      I am not sure how to include more photos of feet and also of drawer back/bottom.
      Feet look original to me and drawer back is hand hewn and dovetailed.
      But I can do so if someone can help me figure it out. Would I need to make a new post
    4. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 7 years ago
      Very interesting piece. In your third picture the name is very clear to read but the bottom on the piece also shows. How did the name happen to be up side down? Must be a real mystery for all of us. I never happened to see one in this manner. The dovetails joints and other construction joints would certainly help. Just start a new post and show us. If you aren't able to I am sure we will all understand.
    5. Firewalker918, 7 years ago
      A native New Yorker, John Mason, Founded Mentone after coming to Lookout Mountain about 1872 in search of pure mountain air and mineral water to restore his failing health.

      Mason had gone to the West early in his life and later settled on a farm in Iowa and made his fortune. But his health began to decline at the age of fifty and he began searching for a climate that could restore him to a healthy state.

      During his search he was given a glowing account of Lookout Mountain's healthful atmosphere. So Mason made his way to the mountain and, after residing with a family who lived above Valley Head, Alabama for several months, his health grew much better.

      He returned to Iowa, but soon he became ill again and determined to return to Lookout Mountain to settle permanently. Mason loaded his family on a steamboat for Memphis, then traveled by rail to Chattanooga.

      However, the Alabama Great Southern trains were not operating at this time due to an epidemic. The intrepid Mason loaded his family into a wagon and struck out through Lookout Valley.

      He settled at a site on the mountain above Valley Head and remained for the rest of his life, enjoying the benefits of the pure mountain air and the mineral water. He lived to be almost ninety-two years old.

      A covered bridge built by Mason to span the Little River near his home was finally washed away in a storm after a citizens' effort to restore it failed for lack of funds.

      A man named Vernon is believed to have built the first house in the Mentone area, and Vernon's Gap near Mentone is named for him.

      John Mason's son, Ed Mason, was so attracted by the healthfulness of the Mentone area that he began laying out a town and advertising the place far and near.

      One day during the period when the Masons' hotel was under construction the Mason Family was seated around the dinner table discussing the prospective town and hotel.

      Dr. Frank Caldwell, who had come to the mountain from Ohio and financed the hotel, remarked that a name for the new town had not yet been chose.

      Alice Mason, the only daughter of John Mason, commented that an article she had just been reading told of "Queen Victoria Vacationing at Mentone." The Mentone referred to was in France and the name means "musical mountain spring."

      The dinner company subsequently decided that Mentone was a very apt name for the town and it was adopted before the meal was completed.

      Dr. Caldwell gave a grand ball in late 1885 at the Mentone Springs Hotel in honor of Alice Mason and Samuel O'Rear who married October 15 of that year.

      The Fifty-seven room Mentone Springs Hotel, built on the main road which leads down to Valley Head, prospered for a time and attracted hundreds of "summer people" until the Depression days.

      Each of the rooms in the hotel featured hot and cold water supplied by deep wells. A wide porch spanned two sides and the front of the building on the first floor.

      A hallway led from the dining room to the reading room and lobby, which featured a unique three-sided fireplace.

      Advertisements for the Mentone Springs Hotel claimed that it was located in one of the most healthful and attractive spots in the South.

      Hotel guests could enjoy swimming and fishing in the nearby Little River, or might indulge in tennis, bowling, croquet, billiards, box golf or dancing. There was a special playground for the children.

      The hotel grounds also included two springs--Mineral Springs and Beauty Springs-- both of which were believed to have furnished water with strengthening and curative powers.

      The water from the Mineral Springs dried up following the blasting involved in construction of a new paved road between Valley Head and Mentone in 1928.

      Dr. John E. Purdon, a former British Army surgeon who was an early guest at the Mentone Springs Hotel, was so impressed by the Mentone area that he determined to found an English colony there.

      He advertised in English newspapers, offering to teach young Englishmen the art of farming. A few young men did come from England to inspect Lookout Mountain, but none stayed on to farm the land.

      Miss Martha Berry, founder of Berry College at Rome, Georgia, also purchased a home near Mentone.
    6. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 7 years ago
      So do you have a COA to connect it to him? I can type out anything but when it comes to being authentic you need more than something copied and pasted from the web. If you think I am cantankerous try selling it based on what you printed above.
    7. Firewalker918, 7 years ago
      no COA but I o have proof that I bought it from Berry College whcih was founded by martha Berry, a friend of John Mason and who built house in MEntone as did John MAson visit Berry Schools or now known as Berry college
    8. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 7 years ago
      Look at it from a buyer's point of view. You have words and nothing else to back you up. Forget what you think, research it and learn. Then compare that with what you thought. Feeding people useless information only confuses the issue at hand. Like saying I found this 2014 penny in a 200 year old house so it must be an antique.
    9. Firewalker918, 7 years ago
      Thanks for your help, its obvious this wasn't made in 2014 so you analogy is quiet off. I don't expect anyone to give an exact value on it based on the story sight unseen, that would be ludicrous. What I would expect is to find helpful people on here who can help identify the makers mark and the age and a value range based on the photos
      All I asked was if someone could help me with info and value, you can base it on the info I gave that is real and that is photos, forget the story if you dont want to consider it, but it would be most kind if you could just help me with the questions I asked in the post.
    10. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Pictures of dovetails and bottom skirt/ feet would be helpful.

      Also a second look at the bottom shows other concerns-- the entire bottom skirt/ feet MAY be a later addition. Wood on the back shows obvious signs of being newer and it just doesn't look 100% correct on the front (hard to judge with sideway photos).

      I'd be happy to give you a ballpark after seeing some more images and confirmation of age.

      scott

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