Diminutive Paint Decorated Pine Chest over Drawer, possibly Rhode Island, early 19th century, the rectangular thumbmolded hinged top opening to a well above a case with single drawer resting on cutout feet, old blue-gray painted surface with a white feather painted designs, the front with a sheaf of wheat, ht. 34, wd. 33 1/4, dp. 18 in. Provenance: In 1948, this chest was given as a gift by Helen Metcalf Danforth to Max William Sullivan.
1771” in black paint and the name “JOHN / SPITLER” on the central panel provide some answers about its origin. At the same time, those answers raise more questions as I begin to explore the mysteries of this chest, its maker, and its original owner. Currently offered as a gift to Winterthur by Mr. and Mrs. John A. Herdeg, the chest was acquired by the donors at an antiques show in New Castle, Delaware,