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Moira Gallagher
George A. Schastey and Company, Gilded Age ­Cabinetmakers

American Furniture 2016

Full Article
Contents
  • Figure 1
    Figure 1

    George A. Schastey and Company, Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room, New York City, 1881–1882. (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, gift of The Museum of the City of New York, 2008. [2009.226.1–19a–f])

  • Figure 2
    Figure 2

    Trade card for George A. Schastey (reverse), New York City, 1876–1879. Paper and ink. 2 1/4" x 3 3/4". (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art; gift of Paul Manganaro, 2016 [2016.631.2].)

  • Figure 3
    Figure 3

    Photograph of George A. Schastey and Company’s showroom, 1681–1683 Broadway, New York City, ca. 1885. (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art; gift of Paul Manganaro, 2016 [2016.631].)

  • Figure 4
    Figure 4

    Model B grand piano from the William Clark House, Newark, New Jersey, case by George A. Schastey and Company, instrument by Steinway and Sons, New York City, 1882. Satinwood and purpleheart; brass, silver. H. 40" (closed), W. 60", D. 84". (Collection of Paul Manganaro; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 5
    Figure 5

    George A. Schastey and Company, chair from the drawing room of the William Clark House, Newark, New Jersey, New York City, ca. 1882. Satinwood and purpleheart; brass. H. 40", W. 30", D. 36". (Collection of Marco Polo Stufano and the late John H. Nally; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.) The upholstery is modern.

  • Figure 6
    Figure 6

    Dressing table, attributed to George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Satinwood and purpleheart with white pine; marble, mother-of-pearl, silver-plated drawer pulls, brass, mirrored glass. H. 86 3/8", D. 36", W. 18 3/4". (Courtesy, High Museum of Art, Virginia Carrol Crawford Collection.) The velvet on the upholstered footrest is replaced.

  • Figure 7
    Figure 7

    Cabinet, attributed to George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, ca. 1880. Satinwood and purpleheart; brass, glass. H. 78 1/2", W. 92 1/4", D. 18 1/4". (Courtesy, Mission Inn; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 8
    Figure 8

    George A. Schastey and Company, drawing room of the Samuel Nickerson House, Chicago, Illinois, ca. 1880. (Courtesy, Richard Driehaus Museum; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 9
    Figure 9

    Cabinet, attributed to George A. Schastey, New York City, ca. 1878. Satinwood and unidentified dark wood; brass, glass. H. 121", W. 75", D. 27". (Courtesy, Hotel Del Coronado; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.) This cabinet originally furnished Linden Towers, the James C. Flood House, Menlo Park, California, now demolished.

  • Figure 10
    Figure 10

    George A. Schastey and Company, Worsham-Rockefeller Bedroom, New York City, 1881–1882. Ebonized cherry and lightwood marquetry; brass, glass. (Courtesy, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Gift of the Museum of the City of New York.)

  • Figure 11
    Figure 11

    George A. Schastey and Company, Worsham-Rockefeller Moorish Reception Room, New York City, 1881–1882. Ebonized cherry and gilded wood; polychrome pigment, brass, glass, textiles. (Courtesy, Brooklyn Museum, gift of John D. Rockefeller Jr.)

  • Figure 12
    Figure 12

    George A. Schastey and Company, cabinet from the drawing room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Ebonized oak; brass, gilded bronze, agate. H. 60 1/2", W. 75 3/4", D. 13 1/4". (Courtesy, Seattle Art Museum, The Guendolen Carkeek Plestcheeff Endowment for the Decorative Arts, The Decorative Arts and Paintings ­Council and the Decorative Arts Acquisition Fund, in honor of the 75th Anniversary of the Seattle Art Museum.)

  • Figure 13
    Figure 13

    George A. Schastey and Company, side chair from the drawing room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Ebonized oak; metal casters. H. 37 1/2", W. 23", D. 23 1/2". (Courtesy, Brooklyn Museum, gift of John D. Rockefeller III.) The upholstery is not original.

  • Figure 14
    Figure 14

    Tall case clock, case by George A. Schastey and Company, movement by Tiffany and Company, New York City, 1882. Ebonized oak; leaded glass, brass. Approx. H. 96", W. 18", D. 18". (Collection of Brian A. Emery; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.) This tall case clock has an oral history of being purchased from the William Clark House.

  • Figure 15
    Figure 15

    George A. Schastey and Company, worktable from the bedroom of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Purpleheart, satinwood, walnut, and mahogany with tulip poplar; brass, pewter or lead, mother-of-pearl, glass, colored resin, velvet. H. 30 3/4", W. 40 3/8", D. 24 1/4". (Courtesy, Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, Museum of Art, Utica, New York, Museum Purchase by exchange with gifts from Jane B. Sayre Bryant and David E. Bryant in memory of the Sayre Family, and from the H. Randolph Lever Bequest.) The velvet on the exterior of the slide drawer is a reproduction.

  • Figure 16
    Figure 16

    Detail of the fallboard of the piano illustrated in fig. 4.

  • Figure 17
    Figure 17

    Cabinet, attributed to George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1884–1885. Rosewood, mahogany, and cherry with pine; pewter, brass, and mother-of-pearl inlay. H. 85 1/4", W. 42 3/4", D. 17 1/2". (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, gift of Barrie and Deedee Wigmore, 2015. [2015.51a–h])

  • Figure 18
    Figure 18

    Detail of the fall front on the cabinet illustrated in fig. 17.

  • Figure 19
    Figure 19

    Detail of the jigsaw-cut music stand on the piano illustrated in fig. 4.

  • Figure 20
    Figure 20

    Detail of the footrest on the dressing table illustrated in fig. 6.

  • Figure 21
    Figure 21

    Photograph of a stair hall in one of the Andrew J. White residences, New York City, ca. 1886. (Historic Architecture and Landscape Image Collection, ca. 1865–1973, Ryerson & Burnham Archives: Archival Image Collection, Art Institute of Chicago.)

  • Figure 22
    Figure 22

    Detail of a jigsaw-cut side panel on the cabinet illustrated in fig. 7.

  • Figure 23
    Figure 23

    Detail of the piano illustrated in fig. 4.

  • Figure 24
    Figure 24

    Detail of the cabinet illustrated in fig. 7.

  • Figure 25
    Figure 25

    Detail of a wardrobe drawer in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 26
    Figure 26

    Detail of the door frame in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 27
    Figure 27

    Samuel Gottscho, photograph of the Moorish reception room in the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, ca. 1937. (Courtesy, Museum of the City of New York.)

  • Figure 28
    Figure 28

    Detail of a photograph by Samuel Gottscho of the entrance hall in the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, ca. 1937. (Courtesy, Museum of the City of New York.)

  • Figure 29
    Figure 29

    Detail of the marquetry ornament in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 30
    Figure 30

    Detail of a door on the cabinet illustrated in fig. 7.

  • Figure 31
    Figure 31

    Detail of one of the plaques flanking the jigsaw cut upright music stand on the piano illustrated in fig. 4.

  • Figure 32
    Figure 32

    Detail of a brass marquetry ornament on the cabinet illustrated in fig. 17.

  • Figure 33
    Figure 33

    Detail of a cabinet door in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 34
    Figure 34

    Detail of the cabinet in the bedroom illustrated in fig. 10.

  • Figure 35
    Figure 35

    Detail of the carved ornament at the base of the tall clock illustrated in fig. 14.

  • Figure 36
    Figure 36

    Detail of the wardrobe in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 37
    Figure 37

    Detail of the wainscoting, attributed to George A. Schastey and Company, in the dining room of the Samuel Nickerson House, Chicago, 1881–1882. Oak. (Courtesy, Richard H. Driehaus Museum.)

  • Figure 38
    Figure 38

    Detail of the cabinet illustrated in fig. 12.

  • Figure 39
    Figure 39

    George A. Schastey and Company, dressing glass from the Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room, New York City, 1881–1882. Satinwood, and purpleheart; mother-of-pearl, brass, glass. H. 23 1/4", W. 15 1/4", D. 10 1/2". (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, gift of the Museum of the City of New York, 2008. [2009.226.2])

  • Figure 40
    Figure 40

    Detail of the carved ornament on the piano illustrated in fig. 4.

  • Figure 41
    Figure 41

    George A. Schastey and Company, armchair from the drawing room of the Samuel Nickerson House, New York City, ca. 1880. Satinwood; brass. H. 42 5/8", W. 25 7/8", D. 23 3/4". (Collection of the Richard H. Driehaus Museum.) This chair may have been designed by W. August Fiedler (1842–1903). The upholstery is modern.

  • Figure 42
    Figure 42

    Detail of the chimneypiece from the entrance hall of the Worsham-Rockefeller house illustrated in fig. 48.

  • Figurer 43
    Figurer 43

    Detail of the chimneypiece from the drawing room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany; brass. (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 44
    Figure 44

    Detail of the pediment on the tall case clock illustrated in fig. 14.

  • Figure 45
    Figure 45

    Detail of a side chair from the Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Satinwood and purpleheart; brass. H. 36 7/8", W. 19 1/4", D. 23". (Courtesy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, gift of the Museum of the City of New York, 2008. [2009.226.4]) The upholstery is a modern reproduction.

  • Figure 46
    Figure 46

    Detail of the chimneypiece from the dining room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House illustrated in fig. 59.

  • Figure 47
    Figure 47

    Detail of the cabinet from the entrance hall of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany; brass, glass, marble. H. 155 1/2", W. 220 3/4". (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 48
    Figure 48

    George A. Schastey and Company, chimneypiece from the entrance hall of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany and brass. (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 49
    Figure 49

    Detail of a spandrel from the entrance hall of the Homestead, Arabella and Collis P. Huntington’s country estate, Bronx, New York, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany. (Courtesy, Preston High School; photo, Gavin Ashworth.)

  • Figure 50
    Figure 50

    Detail of the chimneypiece from the dining room of the Homestead, Arabella and Collis P. Huntington’s country estate, Bronx, New York, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Oak; brass. (Courtesy, Preston High School; photo, Gavin Ashworth.)

  • Figure 51
    Figure 51

    Detail of a cabinet door in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 52
    Figure 52

    Detail of the pier table from the entrance hall of the Homestead, Arabella and Collis P. Huntington’s country estate, Bronx, New York, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany. (Courtesy, Preston High School; photo, Gavin Ashworth.)

  • Figure 53
    Figure 53

    Detail of the frieze of the wardrobe in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 54
    Figure 54

    Detail of the fireplace mantel in the bedroom illustrated in fig. 10.

  • Figure 55
    Figure 55

    Wall clock, case by George A. Schastey and Company, movement by Tiffany and Company, New York City, 1881. Walnut with pine; brass, glass, silver-plated brass. H. 40", W. 25", D. 11 1/2". (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 56
    Figure 56

    Detail of a cabinet in the entrance hall of the William Clark House, Newark, New Jersey, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1880–1882. Oak. (Courtesy, North Ward Center; photo, Gavin Ashworth.)

  • Figure 57
    Figure 57

    George A. Schastey and Company, design for an overmantel for the Edward C. Hegeler House, La Salle, Illinois, New York City, ca. 1880. Pen and ink, watercolor, and graphite on wove paper. 17" x 14". (Courtesy, Hegeler Carus Mansion, La Salle, Illinois; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.) The design may have been done by W. August Fiedler.

  • Figure 58
    Figure 58

    George A. Schastey and Company, design for an overmantel for the Edward C. Hegeler House, La Salle, Illinois, New York City, ca. 1880. Pen and ink, watercolor, metallic pigment, and graphite on tissue paper. 10 1/2" x 10". (Courtesy, Hegeler Carus Mansion, La Salle, Illinois; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.) The design may have been done by W. August Fiedler.

  • Figure 59
    Figure 59

    George A. Schastey and Company, chimneypiece from the dining room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Oak; marble, glass. H. 160 1/4", W. 101". (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 60
    Figure 60

    Photograph of the boudoir of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, ca. 1883. (Courtesy, Hispanic Society of America.)

  • Figure  61
    Figure 61

    Side chair, one of a pair, attributed to George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, ca. 1882. Unidentified wood; white and gold painted decoration, brass. H. 35 /4", W. 20 3/4", D. 20 1/2". (Collection of A. Michelle Foote.) The upholstery is replaced.

  • Figure 62
    Figure 62

    Photograph of the dining room in the Samuel Nickerson House, Chicago, Illinois, ca. 1883. (Collection of the Richard H. Driehaus Museum.)

  • Figure 63
    Figure 63

    George A. Schastey and Company, staircase paneling in the entrance hall of the William Clark House, Newark, New Jersey, 1880–1882. Oak. (Courtesy, North Ward Center; photo, Gavin Ashworth.)

  • Figure 64
    Figure 64

    Samuel Gottscho, photograph of the ceiling of the dining room in the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, ca. 1937. (Courtesy, Museum of the City of New York.)

  • Figure 65
    Figure 65

    Detail of the vanity in the dressing room illustrated in fig. 1.

  • Figure 66
    Figure 66

    Detail of the chimneypiece from the entrance hall of the Worsham-Rockefeller House illustrated in fig. 48.

  • Figure 67
    Figure 67

    Detail of the cabinet from the entrance hall of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, George A. Schastey and Company, New York City, 1881–1882. Mahogany; brass, glass. H. 106" W. 99", D. 14 5/8". (Private collection; photo, Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

  • Figure 68
    Figure 68

    Detail of the hardware on the cabinet illustrated in fig. 12.

  • Figure 69
    Figure 69

    George A. Schastey and Company, center table from the Moorish reception room of the Worsham-Rockefeller House, New York City, 1881–1882. Ebonized cherry; brass, malachite, metal casters. H. 30 1/4", W. 34", D. 34". (Courtesy, Brooklyn Museum, Gift of John D. Rockefeller Jr.)