Brunk Auctions
Live Auction

Collection of Jean and Jim Barrow | May 20, 2023

Sat, May 20, 2023 09:00AM EDT
Lot 190

Exceptional American Federal Flame Birch and Birdseye Maple Sofa

Estimate: $40,000 - $60,000

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$0 $25
$100 $50
$1,000 $100
$2,000 $200
$3,000 $250
$5,000 $500
$10,000 $1,000
$20,000 $2,000
$50,000 $5,000
$100,000 $10,000

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, circa 1810, arched mahogany back with inset birdseye maple panels, conforming figured maple inset arms and arm supports, flame birch leg panels, on reeded and turned legs and feet, striped pink upholstery, fully finished and inlaid back, 34-1/2 x 74-1/2 x 24 in.

Note: This exceptional American sofa has a storied history, passing through the hands of the famous collections of Dr. C. Ray Franklin and Eddy Nicholson. A nearly identical sofa is illustrated in Brock Jobe, Portsmouth Furniture: Masterworks from the New Hampshire Seacoast, catalog no. 106, which descended in the Tredick and Brewster families of Portsmouth and is well documented to the town.

Another closely related example is in the collections of the Winterthur Museum (see Montgomery, American Furniture: The Federal Period, cat. no. 271).


excellent overall, some cracks and repairs at crest molding, typical cracks, checking, and minor repairs to veneers, upholstery with light stains and wear, fine color with some areas of early surface on legs

Dr. C. Ray Franklin, sold Christie's, October 1984, lot 444;
Mr. and Mrs. Eddy Nicholson, sold Christie's, January 1995, lot 1168;
Northeast Auctions, August 4, 2002, lot 872;
Milly McGehee (accompanied by original invoice); 
Collection of Jean and Jim Barrow