George Washington's Uncommon Chair

The original of this one-of-a-kind reproduction "Uncommon Chair" sits in the study of George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. Washington purchased the chair from New York cabinetmaker Thomas Burling on April 17, 1790, for £7. It combines the sleek, contemporary design of a French bergère en gondole (an upholstered barrel-back armchair) with a unique swivel mechanism made of four bone rollers that allows the circular seat to rotate.

Thomas Jefferson had a similar chair, also purchased from Burling. Our reproduction of Jefferson's chair can be seen in the Griffin Discovery Room of room of the Smith Education Center at Jefferson's Monticello home in Virginia.

Rolling, or swivel chairs, were "uncommon" during the 18th century. Washington enjoyed the chair and used it throughout his presidency. After he returned home to Mount Vernon in 1797 he placed the chair in his study, his most private of spaces, where he used it for the remainder of his life.

Our reproduction is solid mahogany (though the original featured mahogany veneer and a white oak secondary frame), with solid brass casters and tacks, and green leather upholstery.

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Made in Montour falls, NY

By Chicone Cabinetmakers


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