New York Pembroke Table

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Project by RogerBean posted 11-08-2015 08:04 PM 1969 views 18 times favorited 59 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a New York Pembroke table, based on one made by Rob Millard (who, BTW, offers a very good DVD on making this table). Mine differs a bit from his, largely because it’s a couple inches smaller and lower, but it’s provenance is certainly visible.

(Apologies for the quality of these photos. I’m just not yet set up to take decent shots of larger pieces like furniture. But I’m working on that.)

A few folks around LJ may have seen my boxes, but I’ve long been interested in other areas of “making” as well, with period furniture one of the longest standing, but neglected areas, at least for the last few years. This table doesn’t signal any major shift, but rather a return to making a few pieces that have long been on my project list.

The table is made of Honduras mahogany, with poplar secondary wood. The stringing and bell flowers are holly. The banding is holly and mahogany (cross-banded). The curved-front drawer is hand dovetailed, with an oval inlay of figured mahogany.

The finish is French polish (shellac) and rubbed back to a lightly satin surface, over Cuban red mahogany water soluble dye and dark toned grain filler. The whole thing was given an initial coat of yellow-brown maple dye to tone the holly down to look a bit more aged. The back side of the table mirrors the drawer side; same design and hardware.

I’m not a hand tool purist, but this kind of project lends itself to being done mostly with hand tools, and so it was. The inlays and stringing were done with Lie-Neilsen inlay tools designed by Steve Latta, and they work well indeed. The fly leaves hinge on traditional wood hinges, as did the original.

The cast brass pulls are from Londonderry Brasses, and the steel hinges from VanDyk Restorers. I burned the zinc plating off, soaked the hinges and screws for a day or so in vinegar, and left them outside to weather for a couple weeks to add a bit of patina. Much better.

While not a direct copy of an original piece, it’s a table that “could” have been made in New York in 1790 or so. It’s true to the general design and joinery of the period. The original probably would have had a single piece top, where I used a glue up, but other than that it’s reasonably close.

Thanks for looking in. Next on the bench is a Goddard Newport tall case clock.


-- "Everybody makes mistakes. A craftsman always fixes them." (Monty Kennedy, "The Checkering and Carving of Gunstocks", 1952)

59 comments so far

View helluvawreck's profile


22669 posts in 2286 days

#1 posted 11-08-2015 08:08 PM

Roger, this is a beautiful piece. You’ve done a fine job on it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

16787 posts in 2525 days

#2 posted 11-08-2015 08:21 PM

Roger that is a excellent piece of fine woodworking. Better than professional!!

thanks for sharing….................Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View peteg's profile


3806 posts in 2242 days

#3 posted 11-08-2015 08:25 PM

This is one very classy piece of work Roger, tip of the hat to you sir

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View shipwright's profile


7084 posts in 2217 days

#4 posted 11-08-2015 08:34 PM

OK Roger. Now you’re just showing off! :-)
You already know what I think of this wonderful piece so no need for further gushing …... but man it looks nice in good light and better photos!
You have a right to have a pretty big grin on your face when you look at this one. Everything about it is “just right”.
Well done my friend.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees.

View SteveGaskins's profile


621 posts in 2006 days

#5 posted 11-08-2015 08:47 PM

Roger, to be totally honest, since the time you mentioned a few months back you would be starting on a Period piece, I have looked to get an email stating my buddy had posted such a piece. Well, a few minutes ago, I received the email from LJ’s. Roger, this is outstanding and your workmanship, like always, is over the top as a master craftsman. This is also the furniture era I have the most interest in, and will mostly likely always will. You just added another project to my wish list. I have Rob Millard’s DVD too, and this will be a good time to take another look at the DVD.

Thanks Roger for such as sensational piece of art. Added to favorites.

-- Steve, South Carolina,

View BurlyBob's profile


3462 posts in 1685 days

#6 posted 11-08-2015 08:59 PM

Holy cow, that’s beautiful. Truly museum quality.

View dclark1943's profile


245 posts in 1607 days

#7 posted 11-08-2015 09:09 PM

Once again Roger, Over the top ! wonderfully done and detailed, the pattern, the detail , the workmanship outstanding. You continue to be an inspiration to us all. Thanks for sharing. and Looking forward to the clock : )

-- Dave, Kansas City

View Dale J Struhar Sr's profile

Dale J Struhar Sr

442 posts in 2549 days

#8 posted 11-08-2015 09:40 PM

Beautiful job Roger. Thanks for sharing.

-- Dale, Ohio

View rustynails's profile


660 posts in 1948 days

#9 posted 11-08-2015 10:23 PM

Great job Roger. Another class act piece of woodworking on your part.

View Betsy's profile


3333 posts in 3315 days

#10 posted 11-08-2015 10:28 PM

Wow – lots of talent/skill in that table. The finish is amazing. You should be very proud of this piece. Just gorgeous.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View SirFatty's profile


524 posts in 1631 days

#11 posted 11-08-2015 10:47 PM

That is an amazing table!

-- Visit my blog at

View Mark Wilson's profile

Mark Wilson

1694 posts in 482 days

#12 posted 11-08-2015 11:26 PM

Talk about a museum piece. It just makes me sick to look at it (in a good way). I’m so proud of myself for having a Buddy who can do stuff like this. It’s breath taking, Roger. I’m stunned.

-- Mark

View Woodbridge's profile


3451 posts in 1837 days

#13 posted 11-08-2015 11:52 PM

beautiful table!

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View gbear's profile


492 posts in 3518 days

#14 posted 11-09-2015 12:03 AM

Beautiful table…I love it.

-- gbear, Carmichael, CA

View bobasaurus's profile


2587 posts in 2603 days

#15 posted 11-09-2015 12:26 AM

Roger, that thing is incredible. You are one hell of a craftsman.

-- Allen, Colorado

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