Several years ago we wrote an article about Old Hickory rustic furniture and its relationship to the Estes Park Center. The museum's recent acquisition of an Old Hickory couch has prompted us to revisit that subject.
We don't know much of the couch's history. It's been in Sweet Memorial since at least 1979. We suspect it was purchased circa 1924 for the Administration Building lobby or for the lobby of Wind River Lodge. Regardless of its history, the couch represents a significant addition to the museum's collection.
Before beginning it's restoration, recent modifications including a plank seat were removed. The couch frame was as sturdy as the day it was built. Even the finish required minimal cleaning.
The couch is pictured in a reproduction of a 1910 Old Hickory Furniture Company catalogue. It lists the retail price as $25, which was a handsome sum for the time. Today the Old Hickory Company lists the same couch for $4,200! That price reflects the handcrafting required to complete the couch. Even in this modern age, no machine can duplicate the craftsmanship required to hand fit each piece and weave the seats. If you are connected to the internet we suggest you take a look at www.oldhickory-ct.com.
From: Museum Musings , Estes Park Center , Colorado Vol. 14 No. 2 1998