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Stretcher Table

Place Made:
Prince George County Virginia United States of America
Date Made:
walnut –yellow pine
HOA: 26 7/8; WOA: 32 1/4; DOA: 19 1/2
Accession Number:
DESCRIPTION: Table with unmolded top attached to the legs with pegs originally; fitted with a single long drawer with struck beaded edges; finished on all four sides; rails are struck off with heavy quarter round moldings; features inverted baluster turnings and a turned H-stretcher; one board on top is replaced.

This is the only Virginia stretcher table known to employ inverted baluster turnings. Inverted “baluster and spool” turnings were fashionable in England from roughly 1600 to 1700. Like most early turnings, the legs and stretchers were turned wet and, today, are oval in cross-section. The oval shape and “checking” (splitting) seen in certain areas is a result of wood shrinkage across the grain.

The table is finished on all four sides and may have been used as a tea table. Tidewater Virginia tables are often finished on all sides even though they were intended to sit against the wall.

The table descended in the family of Hugh Lee (d. 1739) and his wife, Ann Tatum, early settlers of Prince George County, Virginia. It can be traced to their descendants Joel Lee (1775-1858) and his son Peter E. Lee (b.1822), who married Julia A. Tyus of neighboring Sussex County, Virginia, in 1868. Dying with no children, the table descended in the Tyus family with a verbal history that it “came from the Lee family.”
Credit Line:
MESDA Purchase Fund