Tom Thumb Settee/Sofa Lands At Ringling
Tom Thumb and his wife, Lavinia Warren’s personal sofa made by John Henry Belter was mentioned here on Rare Victorian once before. I think this is the final story on the sofa – it has landed at the Ringling Museum – a gift from Howard Tibbals in October 2009. I think it is only fitting that it lands and stays there for all posterity.
The article shown above (larger image here) mentions a companion piece “reunited” with the sofa once again. My question is, how can another piece by an entirely different maker – a buffet, no less (think dining room, not parlor where the sofa would have been) be considered a “companion piece”?
The other maker is another New York cabinetmaker at the time, Alexander Roux. The couple received gargantuan quantities of gifts at the time of their marriage from famous friends around the world, so I’m not sure two Rococo pieces landing in the same home qualify as companion pieces. However, I don’t have the full story to know – they very well could have been.
Another question would be, is this a sofa or a settee? Considering the proportions, it would have been a settee to anyone of average stature, but probably considered a sofa for the famous couple.
Thanks to Joan Bogart for the news and image.