Delaware Chair Co Furniture
The Delaware Chair Company was an American furniture manufacturer in the late-nineteenth to the early-twentieth century.
Brief history & description
The Delaware Chair Company was founded by chair maker John G. Strain in 1870, in Delaware, Ohio. The company was noted for producing school and institutional furniture, particularly chairs with double-cane and splint seats.
In its heyday in the mid-1870s, the company was producing over 40,000 chairs annually and it continued to thrive until the Great Depression, when it was sold and moved out of the state of Ohio.
The company is now based in West Virginia and goes under the name of Hooker Furniture Upholstery and continues to manufacture chairs, however, more emphasis is now put on upholstered armchairs and settees.
Guide to collectors
Furniture produced by the Delaware Chair Company is extremely rare and is not a common sight at either live auctions or online bidding sites, such as eBay. However, the Delaware Chair Company is representative of a relatively inexpensive collectable and individual items can be bought for around $150.
Furthermore, there are very few sources for collectors to obtain information. A good starting point for any prospective buyer would be to purchase “How to Be a Furniture Detective” by Fred Taylor.
Collectors should be aware that items that are in good condition and are of higher quality are generally more valuable than items that are in need of restoration. However, should a Delaware Chair Company piece need restoring, then collectors are urged to contact professional restorers.
On January 24th 2012, a vintage school chair with attached desk, made of oak and in the 1930s, by the Delaware Chair Company, realised a price of $149.99 on eBay. The piece was in good condition and features the company’s trademark underneath the chair.
(All values based on auction results from Liveauctioneers.com)
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