Benjamin Frothingham chest auctions for $194,500 at Sotheby's

A beautiful, mahogany chest on chest, attributed to American furniture maker Benjamin Frothingham (1734-1809), brought $194,500 at Sotheby's New York on January 26.

From the collection of Larry McCallister
The top-end furniture market is thriving

Frothingham was one of the few early cabinet makers to label his furniture, making his work especially important for the study of American craft history. As well as chests, the celebrated furniture maker built beds, card tables, desks, and whatever else his wealthy clients commissioned.

The superb top lot, believed to be circa 1770, was offered from the esteemed collection of Dr Larry McCallister, who has been praised by Sotheby's for his "discerning eye, refined taste and passion for the finest quality".

Other stand out lots included a red-painted, comb-back Windsor knuckle armchair, which sold for $92,500, representing a solid 15.7% increase on the piece's $80,000 high estimate, and a Mahogany two-drawer work table, circa 1810, that was estimated to bring $30,000 but sold with an impressive 168.3% increase for $80,500.

January 25 saw a handsome John Townsend bureau table also smash its presale estimate, bringing $2.2m to Christie's New York. Having been given what proved to be a rather conservative $900,000 top estimate, the piece sold with a 145.6% increase, further suggesting the top-end furniture market is thriving.

Here at Paul Fraser Collectibles, we also have a number of investment grade antiques in stock, including this John Linnel-made, George III cabinet, which was almost certainly commissioned for the fifth Earl of Carlisle and is crafted from the finest satinwood and mahogany.

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