Unusual Shape Finials 19th Century Ornate Inlaid Traveler's Desk.
This early traveler's desk has it's original key.
To open any of the sections, one must use the key first.
Let's begin in the back area where the key is.
the top lifts open and the side drops down and folds out.
Under the top are the desk's sections for papers and such. Notice each scalloped section has a thin inlay along the top rim. The back section is missing 2 pieces of this inlay.
Next, look at the drop section of the desk.
It folds out to be 10 3/4 inches long , 10 3/4 inches wide. There are sections of this thin inlay missing.
Please note, the sections where the inlay is embedded are deep hand grooved sections for the inlay.
Metered corners, and the mauve velour is framed in what appears to be walnut.
The mauve velvet has retained it's beautiful pattern even though the mauve velvet is worn, especially at the hinge which is shown well in the photos.
Excellent tight hinge.
After folding the desk up, one will not realize there is a hidden drawer. To access the hidden drawer the key must be on unlock, then, tilt the desk back and pull on the desk skirt.
Revealed is indented compartments for the letter opener, the dip pen and wax seal.
Also, 2 indented rectangular box compartments are covered by pin cushion type lids. Now, close the drawer and admire the beautiful
workmanship of the inlay. Hand inlay of mother of pearl and brass ( magnet does not stick ).
Let your eyes follow upward towards the key. Above the key is a tiered braid of ( in my opinion ) ebony wood. The effect of the braid is almost like tramp art, however, created by the finest craftsman. Run your fingers over this area and you feel the tiers of the braid , which is possibly carved then placed onto the desk area. Placed inside the desk are 2 pieces of this braid trim, that had broke off eons ago before I acquired years ago.
Now, look at the other side of the desk. It almost looks like a piano, in fact, the front section lifts up like a pianos keyboard cover.
There is a small section of the braid trim missing on one side.
Under this section are the fabulous unique finials that point down.
Notice the key hole for the key for this section too.
Last and not least, look at the beautiful mother of pearl inlay which is in the center of the brass inlay at various places of the design.
If you have read my description this far, I thank you so much.
I feel this is an important traveler's desk because of the details and cabinetry work.
It is not prefect, however, in my opinion, it has survived the years better than most, especially when you consider the unusual form that one would think it would be top heavy, but, it is perfectly balanced.
Although the photos have the appearance that it tilts to one side, it does but not as much as the photos show.
I put a a small leveler on it, and it does tilt slightly, I would guess it is off about 1/8 to 1/4 inch, which is due to age.
It is not loose, it is sturdy and extremely well made.
It weighs 6 pounds before packing.
I will ship it UPS, although it will cost much more than the $ 25 shipping quote which includes the insurance, I will pay the cost above the $ 25 as a thank you for your purchase...no P O Box , actual address is required.
Please examine the photos well, and ask questions, I am glad to explain more about this item if you need more information.
It does not have provenance.
I know it is from an old family estate above Harrisburg, Pa.
I acquired it at auction about 25 years ago, paid dearly for it, because I never saw another like it.
I had it display on a huge cylinder desk in our original home, then stored it after moving.
It merits displayed for all it's beauty, worthy of owning as a heirloom as it was for the generations of family that passed it down, family member to family member, to include 2 pieces of the trim that broke off , that is so special.
19th Century Ornate Inlaid Traveler's Desk