Author Archives: saucyindexer

Little Wooden Boxes

I like to study the everday objects on display in museums and my favorites are the small boxes and containers used to hold all manner of things: keepsakes, love letters, poison, cosmetics and so on. In ancient Egypt many of … Continue reading

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The Tools of the Ship-builder and the Mast-maker

In 1808 Thomas Jefferson wanted a comfortable chair to rest his aging body. He ordered three Campeachy chairs from New Orleans. The chairs were sent by the most efficient and speedy means of the day: by ship. Unfortunately, the ship … Continue reading

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The Tree That Sparked an Industry and a Riot

“Notable high timber trees” In May of 1605 explorer Captain George Waymouth and his crew arrived off the coast of the “Northern part of Virginia” as that part of the New World was called. They were on a small island … Continue reading

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The Forest in a Chessboard

In “Invisible Cities” by Italo Calvino and translated by William Weaver, the aged Kublai Khan and the young Marco Polo sit in a palace garden while Polo diverts the emperor by telling tales of his travels (or so it seems … Continue reading

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Sprawled Below Tables and Chairs

“While publications of the 1930s and 40s explored the origins of design, principles of construction and the materials employed, it was not until the 1970s that the joinery of such furniture was discussed in print. In a developing field where … Continue reading

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Transporting the “Goodly Cedars” of Lebanon

In the ancient Mediterranean world the Phoenicians were suppliers of timber to kingdoms poor in wood and other natural resources. The cedars of Lebanon, Cedris libani, were especially valued for their fragrance and resistance to rot and insects. In the … Continue reading

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“The Notebook of Philadelphia Joiner John Widdifield”

In the autumn of 2015 there was considerable interest in the auction of  the notebook of the early-18th century joiner, John Widdifield. A private collector prevailed in the auction and agreed to make the notebook available for publication and study … Continue reading

Posted in Historical Images