High Chest of Drawers

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Attributed to John Goddard
American, 1723-1785

High Chest of Drawers, 1755/85

Mahogany with chestnut and white pine
219.4 x 101.6 x 54.6 cm (86 3/8 x 40 x 21 1/2 in.)
The Helen Bowen Blair Fund, 1989.158

Along with Philadelphia and Boston, Newport, Rhode Island, was one of the three leading furniture-making centers in colonial America. Newport benefited from its location on coastal trade routes between England and the West Indies, and its merchants were among the wealthiest and most influential figures in the colonies. The finest Newport furniture came from the Goddard and Townsend shops, whose most notable pieces were completed before the Revolution. This high chest is attributed to John Goddard. Goddard's marriage to the daughter of Job Townsend joined the two families, beginning a virtual furniture-making dynasty that remained active into the following century.

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Publication History

Donald R. Sack Magazine Antiques 135, 5 (May 1989), pp. 1016–17.

Marvin D. Schwartz, “It’s Growing! Chicago’s American Wing,” Antiques and The Arts Weekly (June 29, 1990), pp. 1, 76–78 (ill.).

Judith A. Barter et al., American Arts at The Art Institute of Chicago: From Colonial Times to World War I (Art Institute of Chicago, 1998), pp. 78-79, no. 22.

Ownership History

Donald R. Sack, Buck Hill Falls, Penn., by 1989; Marshall Field V, Chicago, 1989; sold to The Art Institute of Chicago, 1989.