Upon the expiration of Michael Thonet’s patent on December 10, 1869, the Henry I. Seymour Chair Manufactory was one of the first American companies to utilize Thonet’s manufacturing process of employing steam to bend wood to fabricate furniture. As with Thonet’s furniture, the remarkably simple design is dictated by the means of production. Vernacular American influences abound as well. The chair’s minimalist form is taken directly from the Shakers, a religious sect known for creating humble, well-made furniture. Seymour’s company was so closely aligned with Shaker practices that it sent chair frames to nearby Shaker villages in upstate New York to have the traditional wool tape woven for the seat and the back.
Wood and original wool blend tape seat and back
Design Patent February 23, 1875
36 7/8 x 20 1/8 x 27 1/2 in. (93.7 x 51.1 x 69.9 cm) (show scale)
Maria L. Emmons Fund
Rocking Chair. Cherry stained bentwood with wool blend seat and back. Back stiles and crest is one continuous flattened U-shaped bentwood member. Arms and front legs are also one continuous L-shaped bentwood member. Two tapered narrow straight stretchers between lower front legs and at sides; one stretcher joins lower back stiles. Front and back stiles joined to bentwood sleighs. Seat and back composed of narrow light blue and off white wool blend tapes.
CONDITION - Minor scratches; seat and back soiled.
This item is not on view
Grove M. Harwood. Rocking Chair, Design Patent February 23, 1875. Wood and original wool blend tape seat and back, 36 7/8 x 20 1/8 x 27 1/2 in. (93.7 x 51.1 x 69.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Maria L. Emmons Fund, 1995.97. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1995.97_bw.jpg)
overall, 1995.97_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license
. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.
Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact email@example.com
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.