Hepplewhite Inlaid Games Table, ca. 1810

Value (2011) | $6,000 Retail$9,000 Retail

It's been in my family for generations, and I know it goes back to at least my great-grandparents on my father's side.

Okay, and where were they from?

They were from Stoneham, Massachusetts. My family goes way back to Massachusetts. Some of them came over on the Mayflower.

It's a handsome table. I recognize it as a piece that was made right in my area.


Southeastern Mass., and they made some furniture with some quirky characteristics. For example, it's very unusual to find oak secondary wood, and the piece on the back here is made of oak. This is a Federal card table from the Hepplewhite period. It would date to about 1810. The inlay is also very unusual. It's naive; it's not tight, it's not beautifully executed, yet it works. The cabinetmaker who made this was trying to replicate what was being made in Boston at the time. If this table were actually made in Boston, it would have had much finer inlay. This is called a games table or a card table, so it was meant to be used like this, to play games on. And one characteristic that's really wonderful of this table is that the inside is inlaid. That's very unusual. Generally, the inlay is strictly on the outside. So that makes this a very special example. Typical of formal. Federal pieces from the early 19th century, they used mahogany primary wood, and the inlay is probably a holly or a satin wood, and the darker wood could really be anything. It might be walnut. Some of it looks like ebony. We call this shape demilune, the half-circular table. It has a Hepplewhite-style tapered leg with a cuff inlay at the bottom. Very typical of the period. It has this wonderful barber pole inlay on the legs-- again, something that we see in southeastern Massachusetts furniture-- and all three panels are inlaid with string inlay and these floral designs. So even though it's a little unusual and it's a little quirky, overall it's a wonderful table. Do you have any idea of what it might be worth?

I haven't got a clue. We've just always had it in the front hall with a lamp sitting on it and some books.


It was the front hall table.

This is something that in a retail market, I would easily see a $6,000 to $9,000 price on this. It's really a nice example of Federal furniture with a lot more inlay than what you usually get.

Oh, wonderful. That's great. Thank you very much.

Appraisal Details

Gary R. Sullivan Antiques, Inc
Canton, MA
Appraised value (2011)
$6,000 Retail$9,000 Retail
Pittsburgh, PA (August 13, 2011)

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