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A QUEEN ANNE CARVED WALNUT COMPASS-SEAT SIDE CHAIR
Please note lots marked with a square will be move… Read more PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF MRS. J. INSLEY BLAIR
A QUEEN ANNE CARVED WALNUT COMPASS-SEAT SIDE CHAIR

PHILADELPHIA, 1740-1760

Details
A QUEEN ANNE CARVED WALNUT COMPASS-SEAT SIDE CHAIR
PHILADELPHIA, 1740-1760
appears to retain its original underpinnings; the chair frame marked IIII, original slip-seat frame marked IIII
42 ½ in. high
Provenance
Probably made for Dr. Thomas Graeme (1688-1772), Graeme Park, Horsham, Pennsylvania
Mrs. J. Insley Blair (Natalie Knowlton) (1883-1951), Manhattan and Tuxedo Park, New York
Natica (Blair) Lorillard (1913-1955), daughter
Screven Lorillard (1909-1979), husband
Alice (Whitney) Lorillard (1919-2015), wife
Thence by descent in the family
Special Notice

Please note lots marked with a square will be moved to Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services (CFASS in Red Hook, Brooklyn) on the last day of the sale. Lots are not available for collection at Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services until after the third business day following the sale. All lots will be stored free of charge for 30 days from the auction date at Christie’s Rockefeller Center or Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services (CFASS in Red Hook, Brooklyn). Operation hours for collection from either location are from 9.30 am to 5.00 pm, Monday-Friday. After 30 days from the auction date property may be moved at Christie’s discretion. Please contact Post-Sale Services to confirm the location of your property prior to collection. Lots may not be collected during the day of their move to Christie’s Fine Art Storage Services (CFASS in Red Hook, Brooklyn). Please consult the Lot Collection Notice for collection information.

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Lot Essay

Identical in design to several chairs with a history of ownership at Graeme Park, this side chair is most likely part of a set made for Dr. Thomas Graeme (1688-1772) after he purchased and remodelled the estate in 1739. Chairs from the same set have been recorded as follows: Christie’s, New York, ? September 2013, lot ?, Colonial Williamsburg (acc. no. 1957-106,A), David Stockwell, advertisement, The Magazine Antiques (September 1956), p. 173, Wechsler's Auction House, Washington D.C., 17 January 1998, lot 185. Another closely related set with slightly different shell carving is represented by a chair at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (acc. no. 25.115.9).

Originally called Fountain Low and probably constructed for utilitarian purposes, Graeme Park was built in 1722 for Lieutenant-Governor Sir William Keith (1669-1749) on his 1,735 acre estate about twenty five miles north of Philadelphia. Graeme had accompanied Keith to Philadelphia in 1717 and two years later married Keith's step-daughter, Ann Diggs (d. 1765). Keith returned to England in 1728 and after purchasing the house, Graeme re-named the estate and began its transformation into a Georgian summer mansion by re-planting the gardens and retrofitting the house with interior panelling. Graeme bequeathed the estate to his daughter, Elizabeth Graeme Fergusson (1737-1801), a respected poet and scholar who hosted America's first salon, attended by Philadelphia's leading intellectual figures such as Dr. Benjamin Rush and Francis Hopkinson. Based upon the provenance of other chairs from the same set, it appears that the set remained intact through the late nineteenth century and was owned by successive proprietors of Graeme Park.
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