Light and darkwood inlays
Shenandoah County, Probably Woodstock
Circa 1800
W 73.5″ x D 25.5″ x H 37.5″

The northern regions of the Valley of Virginia, especially the Winchester & Frederick County area, were often the first stop for cabinetmakers and other craftsmen trained in Baltimore, Washington and larger tidewater towns as they moved westward.  In search of opportunities beyond the developed eastern centers, they brought the skills learned in apprenticeships and knowledge of currents styles and decorative techniques such as veneering and inlay.   Some stayed in the region, but many moved on westward  to Kentucky or southwest, down the Valley and into the Carolinas, Georgia or Tennessee.  Most left  evidence of their passage in the well built furniture , both vernacular and stylish, they crafted for Valley families.  This sideboard is among the most ambitious and successful examples of work produced in a  Frederick or Shenandoah County shop in the Federal era.

Drawing inspiration from Baltimore boards for the overall proportions, serpentine form and decorative scheme, the cabinetmaker utilized choice, figured cherry wood for his case and fashioned unique inlays from highly figured  native woods.  The creative combinations of wood grains and colors in the stringing, circles, fans and oval inlay patterns, demonstrate an exceptional level of imagination and skilled artisanry.

The construction of this sideboard is refined yet robust with pine framing of thick stock and solid joinery.



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Christopher H. Jones Antiques

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