Antique Bankers Chairs

wikicollecting

2015-06-26 11:15:11

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Antique Bankers Chairs are chairs first made at the end of the 19th century, as a modification of the English Windsor chair.

History and Description

Unlike the Windsor chair, which is used primarily as a dining chair, Bankers chairs are designed for comfort during longer periods of use.

They are characterised by a broad, squared seat, the base of which is cut to accomodate the sitter, and a slatted back, usually half or three-quarter height, which curves around the seat. They usually have arms. They are made of solid wood, and are not normally deeply upholstered.

However, some designs have shallow upholstery. They are early examples of chairs which are mounted on a swivel base with castors replacing legs. (Modern 'office chairs' are based on the same principle shape.)

Guide For Collectors

An early producer of Bankers chairs was the Marble and Shattuck Company, which produced a variety of designs. Chairs made by this company after 1894 can be identified by a lion's head motif, usually found on the base of the seat.

Earlier Bankers chairs are characteristically 'Victorian', with strongly arched arms, ornate carving, and engraving to the back. Later designs are heavily influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement and had simpler, straighter lines.

Antique Bankers chairs can frequently be found having been repainted and upholstered for use in modern homes. This reduces the value significantly. Bankers chairs in their original state can often be found in bankruptcy and estate sales.

Value

A lot of two oak Bankers chairs was sold by Slawinski Auction Company for $275 in September 2010.

A pair of carved wood and leather swivel Bankers chairs was sold by C. Downing Auctions for $325 in May 2011.

A pair of 19th century carved leather Bankers chairs was sold by Applebrook Auctions & Estate Sales for $700 in March 2006.

A lot of eleven Bankers chairs with black leather upholstery was sold by Fisher's Auction Service for $900 in July 2006.

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