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Antique Walnut Telephone Table with chair

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Champagne1964's loves6 of 68Ruckl - Lidded dishPicked this up at an estate sale and really want to know more about it.
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    Posted 4 years ago

    bowinkle
    (3 items)

    Just picked this up today. Made out of walnut wood. Stands 49 3/4" tall, by 23" wide, and is 14 1/4" deep. It has the matching chair with a sitting stock. All the storks seem to me, to be hand carved. I'm thinking, maybe 1910 or so for a date made. As near as I can tell, it was made for a candlestick phone. I have been searching for any info on this beautiful piece, but I can't find anything that looks like this. Can anyone out there steer me in the right direction as far as doing more research on it? Thanks.

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    Comments

    1. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      I will give you the benefit of what little memory I have left. I have seen a similar item but as fancy carved, many years ago in a Catholic church. I believe it held a large gold goblet that had something to do with communion. To many years ago but perhaps another avenue for research.
    2. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Thanks for the comment but this one is for a phone. In the back, there is a door that opens and a place for the wire to come in to hook up the phone itself.
    3. shareurpassion shareurpassion, 4 years ago
      That is an amazing piece! Wow.
    4. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Sorry I got the impression from your post that you were still a bit unsure about this item. Everything about it is right to be a home tabernacle. Yes they were frequently wired to a small bulb inside. Used at home it normally had a religious statue inside it or perhaps a bowl of holy water. They were made of every type material you can think of and every Italian home had one at the entry or living room. You didn't give the height of the seat or the table proper but they look out of proportion for a telephone desk and more in keeping with a prayer table. That is why I didn't get your message clearly, sorry my error. Good luck with your research.
    5. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      You may be right fhrjr2. I will check it out using you thoughts. The chair is rather small and there is a desk drawer under the table top. With your thoughts, what would the drawer have been used for? What purpose? Thanks for the help.
    6. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      When you sat there to pray there would be a bible and probably a hymnal in the drawer. Also You will find those are not storks. If you research religious symbolism for pelicans you will find many images the same as your carvings. This dates from a few hundred years before Christianity. Wings back, head bent biting it's lower neck, chest area to draw it's own blood. Many carved wooden Tabernacles were made in Italy and often in other countries by Italian immigrants. They are an excellent investment if you get them right price, far better investment than a telephone table by a few hundred dollars or more.
    7. Manikin Manikin, 4 years ago
      I agree with fhr on this not a telephone table but a religious desk .
    8. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Okay, great. At least we can move forward in a new direction. Anyone care to suggest a time period?
    9. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Other research terms that apply to this item might be Home Chapel or even home Tabernacle Altar also referred to as a temple or a shrine. Pretty much depends on what religion the owner was. I believe Buddhists call them a Buddha Box or cabinet and keep their Buddha in it.
    10. rocker-sd rocker-sd, 4 years ago
      I'll throw my 2 cents in and say I agree with your original ideal, telephone desk. If it was a Home Chapel, especially Catholic it would have had kneeling rail.
    11. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      2 cents accepted but no change. There is nothing to indicate it is or was Catholic all religions have them. I am all to familiar with kneeling rails from my younger years. There well may have been one that slid back under out of the way. More research may find it to be totally unrelated to religion or telephones. I find many more as Tabernacles than a phone cabinet. Or perhaps the church kept their phone in the Tabernacle. ;)
    12. PhilDMorris PhilDMorris, 4 years ago
      If there ever was a phone in here I wonder how it would clang and shake when it rang. I like your date on the piece.
    13. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Boy, a lot of good information here. Thanks so much for your efforts in helping me with this piece.
    14. rocker-sd rocker-sd, 4 years ago
      A candle stick phone would have a outside bell box not attached to the phone except by wire. The bell box could have been placed on top of the cabinet and easily hidden by the high shield on the top.
    15. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      I asked this before and will ask again. What is the measurement from the floor to the chair seat? What is the measurement from the floor to the table top?
    16. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      Can you post a picture of the carving of the drawer, or describe it?
    17. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      Check this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Small-Antique-Carved-Mahogany-Desk-Chair-Gothic-Style-Swan-Carvings-NR-/382016747056

      I bet on the telephone desk theory.
    18. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      good find mcheconi, if the dimensions match I am convinced as far as the table goes.
    19. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Would have been nice if the guy provided some provenance to support is claim as to what this is. He sells anything and everything in his eBay store. I sent him an email from my eBay account to see if he can substantiate his statement. It would be nice to know who made it, where and why. This item has sure gotten interest and that is good.
    20. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Looks like the same table fhrjr2. I am sorry but I missed the post where you asked for the other measurements. Here they are. Top of table is 31 1/4"from the floor, cabinet for the phone is 14 1/4 tall [not including the shield decoration on top] and it is 12" across the back. The measurement across the front, between the legs is 18 1/2". The chair height from the floor to the seat is 18".
    21. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Fhrjr2, your right that a bunch of nice folks are showing interest in this piece. It's great that you can find all this info out. Thanks so much especially mcheconi for finding that item on ebay.
    22. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      You're welcome bowinkle. As far as I could find in my searches, this three-legged chairs seem to be commonly found on these telephone cabinet desk sets, as well as the front drawer (sometimes a simple shelf) for the phone book.
    23. SpiritBear, 4 years ago
      There were quite a few creative ways to hide the candle stick. My favourites are the busts that open up to reveal the phone.
      I agree, phone desk. If it were religious, I don't think it would have the -- cranes?-- birds on it. No reason to hide a statue of Jesus, either.
    24. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      I hope I can learn a maker for this. I like the detail and would enjoy seeing and learning what else they made. The older I get the more I like odd ball stuff.
    25. Manikin Manikin, 4 years ago
      mcheconi, nice link . So top is a marriage of 2 separate pieces ? Looks like a telephone desk with they top cabinet off :-)
    26. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      Hey Mani, thanks. Maybe they had different phone table sets models, like with and without the top cabinet, as it seems to follow the same style.
    27. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Manikin, I don't think this piece is a marriage because of the following. Wood grain and type are a perfect match, flower decoration on chair and all leaf decorations match, finish matches, edge of desk and base of top cabinet match, Leaves and flower on the top crown match bottom. I agree with mcheconi that they had different models of this type of table, for those who wanted to hide the phone and those who didn't.
    28. Manikin Manikin, 4 years ago
      Well it is good to know it was not one of a kind and maybe you could order it either way ? Would be a center of attention in a room for sure . I am with Telephone table but the back still bothers me where they cut a opening it seems to be later . Well I love it !!
    29. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Yeah, I can't figure out why someone did that to the back. Well, at least it didn't hurt the front in any way. It's a cool piece either way.
    30. Manikin Manikin, 4 years ago
      Very cool :-)
    31. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      Just noticed the guy who has the phone table listed is now selling the top piece separately. If he would put it back on the table, it would be just like mine. The back even looks the same.
    32. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      He speculates what it is and he doesn't reply to questions regarding it. Not a big deal just wanted a bit more info.
    33. PhilDMorris PhilDMorris, 4 years ago
      The one that mcheconi found looks like a later reproduction possibly as late as the 90's. It is so hard to tell nowadays, especially by just photos. One thing to note is the condition its in, you would think more age would be showing !
    34. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      I have been watching this sellers auctions. What do you think the chances are that these two items would go up to almost the same price and stop? Within a penny of each other. One is 243.49 and the other is 243.50. Strange.
    35. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Are both bids by the same person?
    36. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      I looked it up and it looks like somewhat of a bidding war going on. Lots of automatic bids so someone is looking to turn a buck when they get it.
    37. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      so the guy disassembled it to sell...oh geee...
    38. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      I don't think that to be a late repro Phil. It seems the same carving and materials to me.
    39. mcheconi mcheconi, 4 years ago
      At least now we know how the cabinet door's knobs look like so you can restore yours accordingly bowinkle.
    40. bowinkle, 4 years ago
      I believe that knob is also a replacement. Looks like the little brass ones you see on stacking bookcases. I have a couple of those laying around here somewhere. I wonder why he wouldn't but it on the table instead of selling each piece separately.
    41. bowinkle, 2 years ago
      Hi batgirl. I still have this piece. Maybe one of these days I'll part with it. Let's see a pic of yours.

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