Antique Charles Sligh Furniture
Antique Charles Sligh Furniture is original furniture produced by the notable American furniture maker Charles Sligh.
Brief history and description
Charles Sligh began working in furniture production in 1862. The youngest son of a war widow, and his brother also away at war, the responsibility of providing an income to the household and supporting his mother and sisters fell to Sligh, who started work as an employee at Berkey & Gay, then a leading furniture company in Grand Rapids, Michigan. At the time, furniture production was a thriving industry, with such companies and factories springing up regularly in that region.
Despite their dominance, the factories themselves remained heavily specialized, choosing a particular area of production, which meant consumers had to source their materials from several different departments.
Sligh Furniture Company was established in 1880, and Charles Sligh sought to revolutionize the process by offering all stages of development in one factory, which he did, to great public response.
Today, Sligh Furniture Company continue to produce bedroom and office furniture, and their antique pieces have developed a following amongst collectors. The company was acquired by Lexington Home Brands in 2011, with plans for further expansion.
Guide for collectors
Sligh furniture is highly collectable, in particular Sligh Furniture Company grandfather clocks, which have sold for large sums of money at auction and are amongst the most famous pieces Sligh designed.
The clocks also contributed greatly to helping establish the company’s reputation as a high quality furniture manufacturer, and the clocks remain in working order and keep accurate time.
The company is also well-regarded for its desks, which even when in near-perfect condition are likely to sell for lower than average prices, making them a good investment for beginner collectors.
Sligh pieces are available from both antique shops and auction houses, in particular specialist furniture sales, where prospective collectors are likely to find particular bargains.
Notable auction sales
The most expensive Sligh piece ever sold was a Charles R. Sligh mahogany grandfather clock, sold for $2,750 on 11th December 2010 from DuMouchelles, closely followed by a fellow Sligh mahogany grandfather clock, sold from the same auction house on 14th May 2011 for $2,500. In a similar price range, a Sligh mahogany tall case clock sold from Susanin’s Auctions for $1,300 on 13th June 2009.
At the top-end of the medium price range, a Sligh mahogany kidney desk sold from Burchard Galleries Inc. on 10th December 2006 for $550, and a Sligh mahogany bureau plat with leather inserts sold for the same price from Wickliff & Associates Auctioneers on 29th October 2011.
At slightly lower prices, a Sligh ladies desk sold from Dirk Soulis Auctions on 20th February 2011 for $375, and a Sligh Queen Anne style mahogany desk sold for $350 on 14th January 2006 from DuMouchelles, surpassing it’s $150-250 auction estimate.
The lowest price paid for a Sligh Furniture Company piece is $25, for a Sligh signed William & Mary style walnut side chair, auctioned on 25th April 2008 from TW Conroy, LLC. Similarly, a Sligh wall clock was auctioned at B.S. Slosberg, Inc. Auctioneers on 3rd March 2008, for $30.