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Object Details
Medium: Mahogany, yellow poplar, Atlantic white cedar, and southern yellow pine 
Dimensions: 104.8 x 145.4 x 68.9 cm (41 1/4 x 57 1/4 x 27 1/8 in.) 
Geog. Data: Made in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 
Period: 18th century 
Culture American 
Chest of Drawers
ca. 1789
Maker: Jonathan Gostelowe, American, 1745?1795
Mabel Brady Garvan Collection
This monumental chest of drawers and dressing glass were made by the Philadelphia cabinetmaker Jonathan Gostelowe for his second wife, Elizabeth Towers, upon their marriage on 19 April 1789. The understated, English-style serpentine front chest with canted, fluted corners is brilliantly accented by the peacock drawer pulls. The swinging glass is one of the most elaborate examples that can be documented to an eighteenth-century American craftsman. 
This object is on view at the gallery.
Clarence W. Brazer, "Jonathan Gostelowe," Antiques 6, no. 9 (June 1926): 386–89, fig. 3, 4.
Clarence W. Brazer, "Jonathan Gostelowe," Antiques 2, no. 10 (August 1926): 108, ill.
"The Hayloft advertisement," Antiques 10, no. 1 (July 1926): 10, ill.
"The Hayloft advertisement," Antiques 14, no. 4 (October 1928): inside back cover, ill.
Anderson Galleries, New York, Antique American and English Furniture sold by order of Mrs. Gertrude H. Camp., sale cat. (April 6, 1929), lot. 173.
"Varied Offerings at the Auctions," Good Furniture Magazine (March 1929): 163, fig. 12.
Thomas H. Ormsbee, The Story of American Furniture (New York: MacMillan Company, 1934), 72–73, illus. 26.
Thomas H. Ormsbee, "Three Pieces Show Gostelowe's Individuality," American Collector 13, no. 1 (June 1934): 3, ill.
Helen Comstock, The Concise Encyclopedia of American Antiques, 2 vols. (London: The Connoisseur, 1958), 76, pl. 39B.
Meyric R. Rogers, "The Mabel Brady Garvan Collection of Furniture," Yale Alumni Magazine 25, no. 4 (January 1962): 11, ill.
Marshall B. Davidson, The American Heritage History of Colonial Antiques (New York: American Heritage Publishing Co., 1967), 209, fig. 280.
Patricia E. Kane, "American Furniture in the Yale University Art Gallery," Antiques 117, no. 5 (June 1980): 1318, fig. 5.
John T. Kirk, American Furniture and the British Tradition to 1830 (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1982), 502, fig. 499.
Gerald W. R. Ward, American Case Furniture in the Mabel Brady Garvan and Other Collections at Yale University (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1988), 123, 146–48, no. 66, ill.
Deborah Anne Federhen, "The Serpentine-front Chests of Drawers of Jonathan Gostelowe and Thomas Jones," Antiques 133, no. 5 (May 1988): 1178, fig. 7.
Handbook of the Collections (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1992), 91, ill.
Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery's complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.