Allen and Brother Music Cabinet

by John Werry on November 11, 2007

Up for sale from Kamelot Auctions in Philadelphia is this fine Allen and Brother (attributed) music cabinet. This piece has a central bronze plaque of a Nouveau-styled woman supported by garland and stylized animal legs with paw feet. The cabinet has ebonized touches throughout and appears to have it’s original marble top.

From “The Magazine Antiques”, May 1996, Page Talbott explains that William Allen Sr. founded the firm in 1835 and his three sons, Joseph, William and James joined and managed the business at various points beginning in 1847. The name “Allen and Brother” took hold in 1865 and Joseph Allen Jr. and James took over the business in 1896.

They were well known at the time for making furniture without the aid of machines and having very highly skilled craftsman producing work of the highest caliber. The brothers exhibited at the Centennial Exhibition of 1876 in Philadelphia.

Very few labeled Allen and Brother pieces remain today, making definitive associations of their work to their name challenging. Even much of the furniture in the Talbott article are merely attributions. You can read the full article here: Allen and Brother Article

Bidding on the cabinet starts at $2,500 with expected range to reach $3,500. This piece is in excellent condition and should fetch a healthy price, potentially above the high-end of the range. November 17th is the last day for bidding.

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