American furniture design and age dating

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This new tool for coloring wood produced some very confusing results.

With anilines, almost any wood could look like almost anything else.

Furniture making in America in the 19th century ranged from the small shop, like that of Duncan Phyfe in downtown New York at the turn of the century, to the huge factories of Grand Rapids and Buffalo at the turn of the next century.

Phyfe was one of the rare early century cabinetmakers who actually used paper labels and tags to identify some of his work.

This article originally appeared in Antique Trader magazine Learn about subscribing to Antique Trader magazine for just

This new tool for coloring wood produced some very confusing results.With anilines, almost any wood could look like almost anything else.Furniture making in America in the 19th century ranged from the small shop, like that of Duncan Phyfe in downtown New York at the turn of the century, to the huge factories of Grand Rapids and Buffalo at the turn of the next century.Phyfe was one of the rare early century cabinetmakers who actually used paper labels and tags to identify some of his work.This article originally appeared in Antique Trader magazine Learn about subscribing to Antique Trader magazine for just $1 per issue!Labels found on 20th-century furniture generally fall into three categories: manufacturers, retailers and associations.

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This new tool for coloring wood produced some very confusing results.

With anilines, almost any wood could look like almost anything else.

Furniture making in America in the 19th century ranged from the small shop, like that of Duncan Phyfe in downtown New York at the turn of the century, to the huge factories of Grand Rapids and Buffalo at the turn of the next century.

Phyfe was one of the rare early century cabinetmakers who actually used paper labels and tags to identify some of his work.

This article originally appeared in Antique Trader magazine Learn about subscribing to Antique Trader magazine for just $1 per issue!

Labels found on 20th-century furniture generally fall into three categories: manufacturers, retailers and associations.

Beginning around mid-century, the advent of the factory system meant most furniture was made in a commercial facility under the auspices of a company name, and very few individual craftsmen labeled their product.

Even the companies of the time were a little lax in marking the work.

per issue!

Labels found on 20th-century furniture generally fall into three categories: manufacturers, retailers and associations.

Beginning around mid-century, the advent of the factory system meant most furniture was made in a commercial facility under the auspices of a company name, and very few individual craftsmen labeled their product.

Even the companies of the time were a little lax in marking the work.

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Without proper labeling, it was easy to confuse the consumer.A little more difficult to identify are companies that were at one time a manufacturer but became a retailer or department store. The most famous of these is the ubiquitous “Mahogany Association” that many collectors mistakenly believe to be a company name.Around the turn of the 20th century, aniline dyes were introduced into the American furniture market.Manufacturers actually produced the furniture from a design to a finished product. Another was Green Manufacturing of Chicago, a maker of parlor frames for the custom trade.Many manufacturers had clues in the names themselves that left no doubt as to their identity. The use of the word “manufacturing” in the company name was unambiguous about what the company did.

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