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Maker(s):Stoughton shop tradition (attributed)
Date Made:ca. 1680
Materials:wood: white oak, Southern yellow pine, basswood; base metal: iron
Place Made:United States; Connecticut; Windsor
Measurements:overall: 41 in x 48 in x 20 in; 104.1 cm x 121.9 cm x 50.8 cm
Accession Number:  HD 1380
Museum Collection:  Historic Deerfield

Joined chest with two drawers decorated overall on the front with sunflowers and abstract leaves and flower heads with serrated edges accented with punches and both incised and carved veining. The carved central panel has multi-tier gouge-accented rosetts with serrated edges - a flower motif that some furniture historians have interpreted as a stylized marigold, the traditional symbol of the Huguenots. The chest has a history of ownership tracing back to Sarah Chester (1707-1770), and probably was originally owned by Sarah's parents, Hannah Talbot (1655-1741) and Major John Chester (1656-1711) who married in 1686 in Wethersfield. Hannah and John Chester may have commissioned this chest from either Thomas Stoughton III (1624-1689) or Thomas Stoughton IV (1662-1748), each of whom married one of Hannah's aunts. Sarah Chester married Col. Israel Williams (1709-1788) of Hatfield in 1731. Col. Williams, the brother of Dorothy Williams (1713-1808) who married Parson Jonathan Ashley (1712-1780) of Deerfield, was prominent in the French and Indian wars and an outspoken Tory at the time of the Revolution. Sarah Chester Williams brought the chest to Hatfield, and after their daughter Jerusha Williams (1747-1821) married William Billings (1744-1812) of Hatfield in 1772, it remained in the Billings family into the twentieth century. There is a similar chest in the Connecticut Historical Society (1849.13.0), also attributed to the Stoughton shop tradition. The top is not original and the interior compartment side panel is possibly replaced.

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