Collections › MESDA Collection › CHEST OF DRAWERS


Petersen, Karsten
Place Made:
Lot 94 in Salem was the location of Karsten Petersen’s cabinet shop in Salem. Salem North Carolina
Date Made:
1820-1830 c.
maple, poplar
H 16 3/4″ W 18″ D 10 1/2 __16 3/4″ __ __18″ __10 1/2″
Accession Number:
Miniature chest of drawers with four slightly graduated drawers. The top drawer has a lock and stamped brass keyhole escutcheon; each of the drawers has two turned knobs. The case sits upon four ball feet topped by small turned rings. The primary wood is figured maple and the secondary woods are poplar and pine. The poplar is used for the the drawer sides and bottoms; the pine is used for the backboard of the chest. The inside of the solid backboard has a penciled design made with a compass. The underside of one drawer has the letters, numbers, and “yes” and “no” associated with a ouiji board (a later addition). Drawers are dovetailed on the front and back with bottoms inserted into dados on the front and sides. Each bottom is lapped and nailed with three cut nails at the back.

This small chest of drwers descended in the family of Karsten Petersen. It was probably made by Karsten Petersen (1776-1857), then descended to his son, William Praetzel Petersen (1817-1898), then to his son William Jacob Peterson (1863-1916), then to his daughter Agnes Peterson Boyd (c. 1904-1976) and then to her son, William W. Boyd (1936-2017) and then was given to Old Salem Museums & Gardens by William Boyd’s family after his death.
Credit Line:
William W. and Greta Boyd in memory of Agnes Peterson Boyd