New York Empire Card Table, ca. 1825

Value (2010) | $1,000 Retail$2,000 Retail
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GUEST:
I had to dig through a garage that a woman had a garage sale in. And it was buried way in the back, and she said, "Just take stuff out," and there it was, and I purchased it.

APPRAISER:
Well, you've brought us an Empire card table from the Empire State. New York is known for its very fine card tables, and this shows lots of skill. It's got a wonderful mahogany veneer top to it, and then the skirt of the table is all stencil decorated. It's got cornucopia with fruit on the front, and then there's some more decorative motifs here on the side, and then you move down to the pedestal of the table. It's been turned on a lathe and then also carved by hand. The Empire period is drawing from Greek and Roman motifs. So the acanthus leaf is something that we see in Greek and Roman architecture. Then move down to the knees, which are carved acanthus leaves. Also hairy, a little, on these knees... Yeah. And then this great paw feet. Now, there's something missing at the bottom of these feet.

GUEST:
Yes, there were wheels that came with it and I loaded it on the car, I took the wheels off and I have left them at home.

APPRAISER:
Okay, but you have them.

GUEST:
I have them.

APPRAISER:
Okay, the good news is you have the wheels. So let's go open up and show the card table itself, the way it works. I love this because the interior of this table has got its original baize green cloth. It's a wool cloth. So this is where you'd store your chips, your cards and any other accoutrements that you'd use to play a game. And then you flip it over and you're ready for a card game for four. It was made in probably about 1825, and a lot is going on in New York State. I mean, the Erie Canal is finished. It's a very prosperous time. And it was, I think, evocative of the prosperity that was happening. So you said you bought it in a yard sale. What did you pay for it?

GUEST:
Twenty-five dollars.

APPRAISER:
Twenty-five dollars.

GUEST:
Twenty-five dollars.

APPRAISER:
Wow. Okay. Well, I would say that the table, if I saw it in an antique shop, I would think it would be priced at, say, $1,000 to $2,000. So it is worth much more than $25.

GUEST:
How nice!

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Skinner, Inc.
Marlborough, Massachusetts
Appraised value (2010)
$1,000 Retail$2,000 Retail
Event
Billings, MT (June 26, 2010)
Form
Card Table
Material
Cloth, Mahogany, Wood

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