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Restored Oak 1920s-1930s Secretary/Curio

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Furniture1390 of 13923Steamer Trunk NoviceRestored/Preserved 1870s Trunk
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    Posted 2 years ago

    (12 items)

    I got this outside of an antique store in Oklahoma City, where two folks were trying to get the store owner to buy some of their stuff. It was in rough shape; bracket legs were broken, wheels and shelves were missing, the oak boards joined for the top of the curio and secretary portion were staring to separate ( I re-joined them with wood glue and clamping), it had pine plywood backing, was painted/stained an almost black walnut color. The store owner wasn't interested at their price, but I negotiated with them and explained the short-comings it had and the work it needed. Also, these aren't a rare find per se, you can find these around in this style and era. So I got it for $125. The mirror is original and so is the card/fiberboard backing behind the mirror (I managed to preserve that including the original tack nails used to secure it ). The drawers surprised me; the were not dove-tail jointed but mortise and tenon joined. It also had cylindrical shaped "drop-in" locks on the secretary door and three drawers. I had not seen these before ( I 've only seen the rectangular shaped drop-in locks before). I did manually shape a an old barrel key I had to work with the locks using a vise and small/fine metal files. After stripping it and sanding I sealed and finished it with tongue oil, and I did put a cabinet clasp on the curio door to help keep the door closed. The shelves were replace using solid red oak. Fortunately the original nickel plated "spoon" type shelve supports were still in it! I did have to stain the red oak shelves to match it using a mixture of Golden Oak and a touch of Provincial colored stains (the new red oak was too light). There is the numeral "1" stamped/carved into the secretary door and desk surface just near the right hinge (see picture of secretary door opened and look at the right hinge). Not seen that before either, not sure what it means. I think this piece, although not an early colonial or Victorian era piece, came out nice. I believe this was made by a small and/or locally owned manufacturer (it doesn't look like a mass produced piece from a large maker). My best guess is it's from the 1920s -1930s.

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    1. scottvez scottvez, 2 years ago
      Looks good. I'd think it was from the first quarter, 20th century.

      Slight nouveau influenced look about it.


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