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Antique Telephone table with chair.

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Telephones170 of 1017Metal Bell System 1964-1969 logo underground cable signAntique Walnut Telephone Table with chair
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    Posted 5 years ago

    (3 items)

    To help with identification of this item, here are a few more pictures of the back of the piece and the bird on the table and chair.

    To fhrjr2, what do you think the reason is for the access panel on the back of the piece is. There is already a hole to bring the wire in and the opening is smaller then the opening in the front. I checked on Tabernacles and found nothing like this one and none that had a seat with them. All the ones I could find were much larger cupboard type things or ones that sat on top of some sort of counter or alter. Any idea of the period of this?

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    1. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 5 years ago
      I enlarged the picture of the back to 200% and I would say that someone at some point modified this to make the trap door. If the wood of the panel is the original piece it was put in backward. On enlargement the grains of the wood don't match up correctly. I also question a piece of this quality having those cheap turn latches. At 400% it blurs slightly but looks like a Phillips head screw in the upper left. If that is the case then it would support this having been refit or modified by a previous owner. Is the interior lined? Does it have a veil (curtain) that can be pulled in front of the opening when the doors are open? The veil may be gone but perhaps there is a track or indication of where one might have been mounted at the top. Lots of questions but important in researching this item. It kind of has my interest.
    2. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 5 years ago
      I will post this and then follow up.

      According to legend, in a time of famine a mother pelican would draw blood from her own chest and give the blood to her chicks.

      Thus the pelican symbol in Christianity, also called pelican-in-her-piety, symbolizes the sacrifice of Christ on the cross (because he gave his blood for others) as well as the Eucharist (because it represents Christ's blood and provides spiritual nourishment).

      The above does a little more than explain the pelican. It mentions the Eucharist, which would commonly be stored in the church Tabernacle. I am not at all a religious person but always willing to learn, especially when it comes to trying to identify something.
    3. bowinkle, 5 years ago
      I agree with you on many points and I will check out about the veil and get back to you in a little bit. I did check about the storks really being pelicans and looks like that is what they are. Great job, thank you.
    4. TubeAmp TubeAmp, 5 years ago
      Seems like a ton of reaching here... phones back then were directly wired to a terminal, so you couldn't just unclip it and pass the end of the wire into a tiny hole and plug it back in, you would need to pass the wired phone through the opening, than put the back cover on again. That would explain the opening on the back and point more to it being a tambored telephone cabinet.

      When technologies like electricity and telephones first came out it was the norm to prominently display that you had them. But as it became ubiquitous, I suspect a certain level of modesty crept back in, encouraging pieces like this.

      T A
    5. Manikin Manikin, 5 years ago
      I cordially disagree much to fancy for a telephone table unless it was in the Vatican or a mansion . Very interesting and does look to be altered may to use as one but originally had another purpose . I will await a few more posts and Phil what do you think ? I am with fhr on this one .
    6. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 5 years ago
      Hahaha! Well said Tube, perhaps we have a Tabernacle Alter modified to accommodate modern technology. Either way, no matter the use it would be far more valuable one way than the other. I am more than open to ideas to research this because I find it interesting.
    7. TubeAmp TubeAmp, 5 years ago
      Info here:

      Pictures of other pieces: (halfway down has a poor picture)

      I don't feel it was modified. The screws look to be straight slot to me. Cheap latches are on the back hidden so... why not.

      T A
    8. PhilDMorris PhilDMorris, 5 years ago
      Almost Empire but more Regency with the neo-classical details. Have seen some pretty fancy telephone tables also. but not like this shape. I agree with Mani in her assessment, it does have more of a religeous stance to it !
    9. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 5 years ago
      Some of these I have seen others I haven't. I did note on one that there was speculation as to the use and also whether the two parts had been joined from different sources.

      I still see the carving as unusual for a telephone table. As for the latches, no craftsman who could accomplish this high degree of work would ever degrade his work with less than quality hardware. It is called pride in craftsmanship.
    10. Manikin Manikin, 5 years ago
      Well whatever it is it is stunning and very unique !
    11. bowinkle, 5 years ago
      Thanks so much everyone for all the help. fhr, I looked inside and did not see a veil or any nail holes where a veil may have been attached. It's just black inside. Also, it doesn't appear to have been a marriage. The top looks like it was always attached to the desk. The three legged chair is a bit unusual as is the shape of the seat. TubeAmp, the phone table, third from the top, looks along the lines of this one. When I first saw it, I thought that has to go home with me.
    12. mcheconi mcheconi, 5 years ago
      Here you have it
    13. bowinkle, 5 years ago
      That sure does look like it mcheconi. Thanks so much for finding that item. Same carvings without the case for the phone.
    14. Gillian, 5 years ago
      Applause! Applause! mcheconi.
    15. johnfischer66, 3 years ago
      I have my grandparents telephone table whit the exact same back with the cutout. It must have been original and I have no idea what it might have been for.

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