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Our specialist Patricia Ackerman, brings to life the ‘Hunt’ Sideboard. Ackerman walks us through exciting details on this furniture of grand-scale.

Victorian Hunt Sideboard, Circa 1850

Carvings and Everyday Use

The Hunt sideboard offered in the Leap Year Day Auction (February 29) this carving is circa 1860 of walnut. In the central panel we have a three dimensional carving of a game bird. The lone bird flanked by swags of flowers and fruit at the crest. As uncomfortable as we are today, these displays were viewed as natural to the Victorians.

As decorative as this sideboard already is, it would not stop there. Each shelf would display porcelains, reflected in the descending mirrors. Even the Family silver tea set could glisten and perch on the thick marble top.

Victorian Hunt Sideboard, Circa 1850_Detail

Looking Back 

This is the kind of dining room furniture at the World’s Fairs of 1850 and Centennial Fair in Philadelphia 1876. The thrill of "Hunt" Sideboards displays at the Fairs led makers across the country to make more. These fairs would drive trends and reflect homes long after the last tickets sold.

This piece bought and came from Hawaii, but it first got there at great expense. This ornate and carved sideboard is one example of what High Victorian furniture looks like. This caliber and style of furniture was designated for Upperclass especially, Hawaiian Royalty. Similar furniture until this day remains in Iolani Palace.

For Further Exploration

Experience the Hunt Sideboard in person, at preview this Thursday and Friday, February 27-28. Ackerman also recommends the book Death in the Dining Room and Other Tales of Victorian Culture by Kenneth L Ames. If you want learn more about American Victorian Culture.

For additional details or questions, please email: Patricia@finesf.com