Dating kroehler dressers

For thousands of years, a dovetail joint was created by a skilled cabinetmaker using small, precision saws and wood chisels.

Tiny angled saw cuts were followed by careful cutting by a sharpened chisel on both sides to avoid splintering.

A little glue cements the connection, and a good dovetail joint has great strength and durability.

Genuine hand made dovetails like these were the standard of good furniture craftsmanship until about 1870, when American ingenuity developed the “pin and cove” or round style dovetail, often seen on late Victorian and Eastlake furniture.These machine-cut dovetails are as strong and long lasting as the hand-made joints, and became the standard of better American furniture ever since the late 1890's.Here is an early example of machine-cut dovetails on a 1920's sideboard from a dining set: European cabinetmakers continued to produce hand-cut dovetails through the 1930's.As the dovetail joint evolved through the last one hundred thirty years, it becomes a clue for the age and authenticity of antique furniture.The type of dovetailed joint, especially in drawers, reveals much about furniture construction and dating.

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In the 1890's, American furniture began to be mass produced, with interchangeable parts and speedy production for the growing and affluent middle class.

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