19th century Pennsylvanian blanket chest, circa 1830
19th century Pennsylvanian blue and black painted pine and poplar blanket chest on turned feet, possibly Manheim or Lancaster County, circa 1830 24x48x20
Replacement Value: $16,000
The typical blanket chest, made from about 1650-1750, stood about thirty inches high and was usually four to five feet long. It had a deep well, bracketed legs, and a top lid, with three sunken panels in front, separated by stiles and rails varying from three to four inches in width. The rails were decorated with running patterns, such as the guilloche, scale, or a double scroll enclosing leaf or rosette forms. The front panels, and sometimes the end panels, were designed symmetrically in the form of tulips, sunflowers, or other floral groups, often arranged in an arched or lozenge shape. Stylized foliage filled the areas; animal or human forms never appeared. The carving, generally flat and crude, cannot be used to date pieces, since many copied previous styles. Over the years, drawers were added to the basic form, increasing the height, and gradually a different piece of furniture evolved.