Is Wood from Late 1800's Furniture of Any Value?

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Forum topic by RosevilleFan posted 05-18-2011 04:47 PM 2951 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View RosevilleFan's profile


2 posts in 3522 days

05-18-2011 04:47 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question old furniture

While cleaning out my mother’s Evanston, IL home, I found some furniture in the basement that belonged to my great grandfather. I hated to junk it all if the wood would have any value to a craftsman. I’m posting this to get some advice and perhaps flush out interested woodworkers from the Chicago area who might want to take a look and/or take some of the furniture.The pieces are all in pretty bad condition (nicked, chipped, etc) and some is stained very dark.

7 replies so far

View driftwoodhunter's profile


273 posts in 2927 days

#1 posted 05-18-2011 04:56 PM

Hi – I don’t know if the furniture is salvagable for restoration, but I can tell you I bought a diibber (or dibbler) from a man in Great Britan this season. It’s a garden tool, and he turned it from the leg of a 100 year old mahogany buffet that was in terrible shape. I’ll bet someone can do something with the furniture. Good luck, I hope they get repaired/recycled!

View bubinga's profile


861 posts in 2908 days

#2 posted 05-18-2011 05:08 PM

Some one in your location ,might pick it up and take it off your hands

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3224 days

#3 posted 05-18-2011 05:09 PM

Maybe posting some pics to give others an idea of what can be reclaimed for making projects might help.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3415 days

#4 posted 05-18-2011 05:11 PM

Agree about the pics.

Like so many things … old can mean it’s a treasure, or old can mean it’s dried out, cracked, rotted, and destined for the fireplace.

-- -- Neil

View DonH's profile


495 posts in 3058 days

#5 posted 05-18-2011 06:06 PM

Often old furniture pieces can offer wood grain and density not available today. However, the later 1800s (likely era of great grandparents) was quite industrial and furniture making was “simplified” to conform. That said, there is a chance that (a) the furniture itself may be of value; and, (b) the wood may be of interest. Some more info and pictures needed.

-- DonH Orleans Ontario

View StumpyNubs's profile


7690 posts in 3041 days

#6 posted 05-18-2011 06:14 PM

I think it would be a shame to throw it away. If nobody wants it, break it down into boards and I’ll pay for you to ship it to me!

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View RosevilleFan's profile


2 posts in 3522 days

#7 posted 05-18-2011 06:42 PM

I’ll definitely post some photos. I showed a couple photos to a lumberjock here in my area and he said it was quite difficult to tell due to the dark paint/stains (and probably quality of photo from a basement didn’t help). (StumpyNubs: Not sure I have time or tools to do breaking down of pieces unfortunately. I’ll certainly check and see what it would entail, though.) I am hopeful to flush out some Chicago area members who would want to take a look.

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