Possibly original, this polescreen bears the paper label of Thomas Tufft (circa 1740-1799). One of a small group of highly-skilled carvers in Philadelphia, Tufft was working in that city from around 1768 to 1788. After taking over cabinetmaker James Gillingham's old shop on Second Street in 1773, his reputation was greatly enhanced. His success as a cabinetmaker is evidenced by the considerable estate he left his wife in 1793. Other known examples of labeled Tufft pieces include a high chest-of-drawers that Sold in these Rooms, June 25,1991, lot 276 and a dressing table at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (illustrated in Bjerkoe, The Cabinetmakers of America (New York, 1957), plate XII, no.1).