In the federal period (1790-1820), wealthy Boston merchants expanded trade to the West Indies and China. As part of this trade, they imported rare and expensive lumber into Boston. Mechanical inventions and the harnessing of waterpower made sawing this lumber into thin veneers possible. New specialists, known as inlay makers, were able to dye, stack, and cut those veneers into decorative geometric bandings which cabinetmakers used as inlays in neoclassical furniture.
Guest speaker Michael Wheeler has recently discovered that red, white, and blue banding was made in Boston during the federal period of the new republic. In his presentation, he will take us through his discovery and research, followed by a gallery tour of the inlaid furniture in our exhibition and his example of modern patriotic banding.
To Register: This program is free and open to the public.