18thC. SHAKER Box Harvard Community - Signed/Dated 1794
18thC. SHAKER Box Harvard Community - Signed/Dated 1794:
An authentic miniature Shaker reverse double swallowtail ("finger") round box crafted by a Shaker elder in the early 1800's.These early maple and pine bentwood boxes were typically made by an elder in the Harvard Massachusetts Shaker community for a gift presentation to a member of the community. The reverse two-finger construction distinguishes it as being produced, by hand, at the Harvard Massachusetts community as Harvard was the only community that used this assembly technique. The top (header) of the box has been incised in freehand script with a word, or a name, beginning with "Hu......" followed by the date 1794. The rich aged patina is evident as is the fact that the rims are attached to the headers (top and bottom) using tiny wooden dowels. The swallowtails (fingers) are each attached by a single hand-wrought copper tack. The sparsity of tacks indicate that this is an early example of Shaker work of the Harvard community as both tight-grained pine and hand-wrought copper tacks were scarce items during the period surrounding 1830. The time involved in crafting these small tacks individually, and the scarcity of tight-grained pine at the time, set this particular work out as rather distinctive and rare in its attributes. Only the earliest examples of these boxes were assembled using small wood dowels to secure the lid with the minimum use of hand-wrought copper tacks to hold the swallowtails ("fingers"). Later boxes crafted after 1830 were done on a more industrial scale in large workrooms in community settings with the intent to sell the products commercially. However, after the Civil War commercial production of Shaker boxes fell dramatically in numberAge split on one swallowtail, as shown. Otherwise in outstanding condition for age.(crystal plinth not included)There are many "replicas" of Shaker boxes circulating in the marketplace. This is not one of them.
Seller guarantees authenticity.Measures 4.25" (10.5cm) in diameter and 2 1/4" (5.25cm) in height