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Cartouche Award Recipients

2023: Dan Faiadan-faia-1

Daniel Faia graduated from the Cabinet and Furniture Making program at the North Bennet Street School in Boston, Massachusetts in 1994 where he currently serves as the department head. He has been on the faculty since shortly after graduation, first as an assistant to Will Neptune in the “short course” program. He became a full-time instructor in 2006 and was promoted to department head in 2010. He has also taught at the Furniture Institute of  Massachusetts, The Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking and the Windsor Institute. He recently opened his own facility to teach small group workshops in Rollinsford, New Hampshire.He has produced the highest quality work for decadesincluding high-style period work, wood carving and Windsor chairs. His work covers a wide range of styles and woodworking traditions.25-2010-Queen_Anne_curly_cherry_highboy

Since his graduation from NBSS he has worked building furniture, period reproductions and traditional woodcarving. He has also participated in demonstrations, exhibits, and presentations for organizations such as Colonial Williamsburg, Concord Museum, Fruitlands Museum, Guild of New Hampshire Woodworkers, Museum of Fine Arts- Boston, Old State House- Boston, Old Sturbridge Village, The Society of American Period Furniture Makers, The Furniture Society, and The Old Manse.

In addition to teaching in person, demonstrating the craft to groups and actively building commissions Dan has written extensively for Fine Woodworking magazine beginning in 2003. He is an active member of the Guild of New Hampshire Woodworkers and SAPFM. We congratulate him on his selection as the 2023 Cartouche recipient and his story and past work will be featured in the 2023 edition of American Period Furniture. More information about Daniel Faia, his work and the workshops he conducts can be found online at:

 2022: Chuck Bender

chuck benderCharles (Chuck) Bender is the recipient of the 2022 Cartouche Award. He is one of the most highly regarded furniture makers in the country and the founder of the Acanthus Workshop. He began woodworking at the age of 12 in his parents’ basement, making pieces of furniture for friends and family. Chuck studied under Werner Duerr at the Central Chester County Vocational Technical School (now called the Center for the Arts and Technology) in Pennsylvania. Werner taught his high school program exactly like his apprenticeship in Germany. The students were instructed to blend hand tool use with power tools.

After graduation from high school, Chuck began working for other cabinet makers to hone his skills. He spent nearly ten years working with Irion Company Furnituremakers, working his way up to head of case and chair production. He opened his own business in 1991 and has since built a reputation for making high quality 18th Century furniture reproductions. His work can be seen in museums, private collections, and at juried craft shows. Chuck has received numerous woodworking awards throughout his career and has been featured in local and national magazines and newspapers.

In 2007, Chuck added the title “woodworking mentor” to his list of accomplishments by starting the Acanthus Workshop (a school for avocational woodworkers). Also, in 2007, he began sharing his knowledge publicly by writing articles for Popular Woodworking Magazine and teaching skill-driven classes at woodworking shows across the country. And with a growing list of more than a dozen DVDs published, Chuck continues to educate budding (and accomplished) woodworkers worldwide.

In 2013, Chuck joined the staff of Popular Woodworking Magazine as Senior Editor but left nearly two years later to start an online magazine. Realizing his true passion resides in the workshop, either building furniture or teaching others, he exited the online venture and re-established himself as a teacher and furniture maker in 2017. He currently operates his own school, the Acanthus Workshop

The award was presented at the SAPFM Mid-Year conference June 24-27, 2022 in Fredericksburg, Virginia.


2021: David Lamb

David Lamb 2021 Cartouche Award Winner

David Lamb’s career started in Canterbury, NH almost 50 years ago when his family moved to Canterbury Shaker Village to run the Shaker museum there. Living within the historical setting and having a personal friendship with the six remaining Shakers gave him a unique insight into that segment of American folklife and the Shaker artistic and architectural output. Within a year of moving to Canterbury David was invited to be an apprentice with next door neighbor, Alejandro de la Cruz, an accomplished and traditionally trained cabinetmaker from Madrid.

The classic training David received over the three year period was thorough and focused on benchwork and all hand techniques and long discussions on design, proportion, aesthetics and the business of being a craftsman. Heavy emphasis on traditional American and European technique and form predominated the shop’s output.

Contemporary art school was next at Boston University’s Program in Artistry with Jere Osgood and Alphonse Mattia as teachers for his degree in Applied Arts. Thinking in non-traditional ways of creating form and aesthetic ideas was instrumental here.

It is these three aspects that drives David’s design and work; classical form and integrity, Shaker directness and function and contemporary rethinking of graphic aesthetic and methods to accomplish them. In addition to these exposures, nature has played a huge part in what motivates David’s design, both in form and detail by constantly drawing flowers and plants, carving them and incorporating these and other natural aspects in his work.

During his career he has been a 40 year juried member of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen and has served as juror for over a decade. He is a founding member of the Guild of NH Woodworkers and regular contributor to their highly acclaimed Journal and is a founding member of The New Hampshire Furniture Masters Association where he has served as chairman for three terms. He was appointed New Hampshire Artist Laureate by Gov. John Lynch for two terms from 2010-2014. David also was a participant presenting traditional furniture making at The Smithsonian Folklife Festival representing NH in 1999 in Washington, DC.

Throughout his career as a full time furniture maker he has had innumerable furniture making opportunities building the highest level of historical work and just as important, pieces that rethink what tradition could mean. Collaborations with other artists and craftsmen play a big part in David’s work but also the insightful feedback and exceptional contributions from his wife, Janet.


2020: Tony Kubalak

thumb Tony Kubalak 2020 Cartouche Award WinnerTony came to period furniture making as an avocation a little later in life.  Initially he was captivated and intrigued by the shells on a Newport Six Shell Secretary he had seen in a magazine. The intrigue turned into a quest to understand and learn how to create them. Over the next fifteen years he learned basic woodworking skills, including hand cut dovetails, from books, videos and an occasional weekend class. However, he resigned himself to only being able to build pieces with a hint of 18th Century design.

This changed in 1999 when he took his first class with Gene Landon at Olde Mill Cabinet Shoppe in York, PA. Over the next eleven years he traveled the 2200 mile round trip from Minneapolis to York multiple times a year, making seven trips in one year. His progress started out a little slow, but with persistence, his skills steadily improved. His first project, a Chippendale Arm Chair, took four years to complete, but after that the pieces became more manageable as his skills and confidence improved. At the same time his interest turned into a passion which continues to this day.

Tony has won over ten awards for his work at the Northern Woods Show, an annual exhibition sponsored by the Minnesota Woodworkers' Guild. For nine consecutive years he was listed in Early American Life's Directory of Traditional American Crafts. His work has been featured several times in Fine Woodworking Magazine, Woodshop News and Woodwork Magazine. He authored a Master Class Article in Fine Woodworking that subsequently led to an opportunity to write his first book, Carving 18th Century Furniture Elements. That experience prompted him to write a second book, Carving 18th Century Motifs.  A third book on building a highly carved Chippendale Dressing Table is in progress. In addition to writing books, he recently has started to offer classes. He wants to specialize in helping others build high style pieces because of his passion for them and because he sees a void in this area.

Tony’s main interest is in high style Philadelphia Queen Anne and Chippendale pieces. He is drawn to the carvings because of their beauty and challenge. He has traveled several times to museums to measure and photograph pieces of interest.  He is currently in the middle of building the Willing Card Table and has documentation for, and plans to build several of the Cadwalader pieces.

You can see more of his work at


2019: Robert G. “Bob” Stevenson, Jr.

Bob StevensonBob Stevenson casework

Bob was an inaugural member of SAPFM in 1999, helped establish the criteria for the Cartouche Award, and for many years was chairman of what is now called the Cartouche Award Selection Committee. With SAPFM member Brad Ormsby he founded the Southern California chapter and has contributed for many years to its success and growth. Following a highly successful 30-year health and space science career in the Navy, during which time he vigorously pursued art and woodworking hobbies, he pursued a second full-time career as a fine woodworking cabinet maker, including instruction for others.

For nearly two decades Bob was the Coordinator of the Design in Wood Show in Del Mar California, one of the largest international juried woodworking shows in the nation with over 350 yearly entries and nearly 1 million visitors each year.  Throughout these years he became active in the impressive San Diego Fine Woodworking Association, all the while continuing his support for SAPFM and pursuing additional teaching and mentoring opportunities with youth in the community and with his woodworking peers. 

Bob’s furniture efforts eventually focused on the Federal Period, and he has entertained and educated SAPFM members with his impressive pieces shown in our publications and in our midyear meeting furniture displays.

Bob has the following pieces in the SAPFM Gallery:

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery

2018: James Journigan

Ray Journigan tn

More than 40 years ago,starting at the of age 14, Ray’s passion for woodworking and furniture making was already evident and has grown more intense as the years have passed. Mostly self taught, Ray is none the less very quick to praise those who have inspired and taught him along the way, including his father, a master finish carpenter; Chuck Lammers, his shop class teacher; Ben Hobbs, 2011 Cartouche Award recipient; and Pierre Restelli, a master carver from Portsmouth, VA.

Between 1988 and 2013, Ray was pursuing two careers, simultaneously. He served his city as a fireman and his state and country as part of various FEMA teams. When not on duty, he created more than 200 pieces of museum quality period furniture, for his own use and on commission. Today he produces furniture and teaches out of his shop in Virginia Beach, VA.

Ray’s work has been featured in various newspapers and in local and national magazines.  He has taught fellow furniture makers through out Virginia for 30 years and is tireless in his efforts to increase awareness and appreciation of American period furniture, determined to keep the craft alive into the next generation.



2017: Jeffrey S. Roberts


 Jeff has built hundreds of period pieces of furniture in the style of Queen Anne, Chippendale, Jacobean, William and Mary, and Federal styles in his distinguished career. 

Jeff started his career at North Bennet Street School studying with Phil Lowe, Lance Patterson and George Fullerton. This is where he fell in love with traditional furniture making and received a solid foundation in joinery, design, carving and building technique. One of  his main passions that he discovered while at school was carving. Carving came naturally to him and would prove to serve him well in his career.

After years of building for others, he moved to New Hampshire in 2007, started his own business and soon became an award winning member of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen as well as juried member of the prestigious New Hampshire Furniture Masters Association, a highly selective group of studio furniture makers in New England. 

Some of the accolades in the last 8 years include a number of League of New Hampshire Craftsmen Fair Living with Craft Exhibit Awards including: 'Best in Traditional Design' for his  Newport Lowboy in 2013; 'Best in Wood' for his Newport Tea Table in 2011; 'Best in Traditional Design' for his Pie Crust Tea Table in 2010; and 'Best in Wood' and 'Public Choice Award' for his  Newport Style Desk on Frame in 2008.  He has been part of the New Hampshire Furniture Masters Prison Outreach Program since 2012 teaching high-level woodworking skills to inmates of the Concord Prison System.

Jeff's Furniture

2016: Ronnie Young


 Ronnie has built in excess of two hundred pieces of furniture in his distinguished career.  Using his engineering background,  he frequently draws the plans he builds, faithfully capturing each detail of the original piece. He constructs his own paterae, inlay, fretwork and moldings and often mills and dries the lumber for his projects.

Ronnie has a particular interest in period Tennessee furniture, and a significant number of his pieces are faithful reproductions of historic antiques from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, utilizing the same wide boards as those the old masters used.

Ronnie Young is a master period furniture maker in his own right,  yet it is his sincere love for his craft and desire to pass on the legacy that set him apart. Ronnie is passionate concerning period furniture and highly skilled at passing on his knowledge to others. 

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery

Cartouche Presentation

In Episode 23's 'Moment With a Master', Ronnie Young tells his story and demonstrates his method for creating beautiful paterae inlay.  (27:08 into the video.)


2015: Dr. E. Jeff Justis

2015CartoucheJeffJustisJeff Justis has been a SAPFM member since its inception.  An orthopedic surgeon for forty years at the reknowned Campbell's Clinic in Memphis Tennessee, he was able to retire in 2001 to pursue his interest in woodworking full time.  His home near Oxford, Mississippi is filled with museum-quality reproductions he has created.

Jeff has built fine furniture all his life. Starting off as a small boy, he acquired tools, helped his father build a small shop, built furniture during grade and high school, college, medical school, surgical practice at an orthopedic clinic, and retirement. Since 1952 he has built many period pieces including Queen Ann chairs, tall case clocks, a pie crust table, a secretary, a Duncan Phyfe dining table, a John Marshall desk, and a Stradivarius-style violin that his daughter played in a concert.

Jeff has written articles on furniture making including excellent ones in Period Furniture on the details and construction of an original designed breakfront and on perspective in building small-scale furniture. As a skilled carver, he has carved hands displayed in his home, in a San Francisco museum, and at a hand society meeting in Japan. At medical school and at the orthopedic clinic, Jeff taught students and associates woodworking skills as well as shop safety. As a specialist in hand surgery, he has written articles on shop safety for woodworkers and the medical profession . As a pilot at the clinic, he participated in Lifeline pilots, flying cancer and other patients to hospitals for treatment.

Highland Woodworker "Moment with A Master", Episode 29

2014: W. Patrick Edwards


In the late 1960's, Patrick started a business restoring antiques as a way of augmenting his income while attending college and working part time in the Physics Department at the University of California, San Diego. After receiving a degree in Applied Physics and Information Science, Patrick started his career. After a year of full-time employment at Maxwell Labs—not an easy job to get—he decided to “retire” from physics and devote all his energies to the field of Decorative Arts.

Continuing to study his new found love, he began to teach, research, lecture, and write—positioning himself as one of the leading authorities on furniture conservation. Today he is widely recognized as a leader in the field of French Marquetry.

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery

The Story behind the Jewel Cabinet


2013: Will Neptune


Will Neptune is a furniture maker and carver working in the Boston area. He credits two summer courses at Boston University's Program in Artisanry (now offered by UMass) with inspiring him to pursue woodworking as a profession. He continued his training by attending the two year furniture making course at the North Bennet Street School in Boston, where he became a full time instructor and taught for 15 years in the Furnituremaking Program. 

He left his teaching position at NBSS in order to devote more time to commissioned work for furniture and architectural elements. He continues to teach at workshops across the country and also writes for Fine Woodworking magazine, which has published a series of his articles explaining construction techniques used for typical furniture forms. 

It’s the problem-solving that keeps custom work interesting, he says. “You never know what the next job will bring.”

Ball & Claw Footstool with Will Neptune


2012: Alan Breed


Al has spent his life around antiques and has repaired and reproduced some of the finest originals. He has written numerous articles on cabinetmaking and has lectured at museums across the country. Perhaps best-known for his reproduction of the Nicholas Brown desk and bookcase, Al’s work has been exhibited in several large museums and can be found in the permanent collections of many others.

The Ultimate Carving Class

The Modern Master: Al Breed






2011: Benjamin C. Hobbs


Ben Hobbs has been building period reproduction furniture for nearly 30 years. After teaching high school math for 10 years, Ben's passion for early American furniture and architecture drew him into the shop in 1982. Since then, Ben has operated as a bespoke custom furniture maker reproducing fine early American pieces, focusing on Southern and local NC examples. After training all three of his sons to be accomplished furniture makers, Ben opened his shop doors in 1996 to train students in his woodworking school. 

Ben's work and/or school has been featured in Fine Woodworking, Southern Living, Woodshop News, Woodworkers' Journal, The Virginian Pilot, Coast Watch Magazine, Kansas City Woodworkers' Guild, and OurState Magazine.

Carving Out History (UNC | Carolina Photojournalism)


2010: Steven Lash


Steven Lash is the co-founder and past President of the Society of American Period Furniture Makers. He has been reproducing eighteenth and early nineteenth century period furniture as an avocation for over forty-five years. He lectures frequently on the design and construction of his period pieces, and his work has been featured in numerous journals including Fine Woodworking Magazine, Fine Woodworking’s Design Book Three and Four, Woodwork Magazine, Home Furniture, The Bulletin of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, and American Period Furniture.

In 2006, three of Steve’s pieces were selected for exhibition in Contemporary Classics, Selections from the Society of American Period Furniture Makers at the Telfair Museum of Art, Savannah, Georgia. His reproduction of Benjamin Franklin’s glass armonica was played at the 2011 Glass Music Festival that was held at Williamsburg, and at the March, 2012 opening of the SAPFM's Traditions of Craft exhibition at the Connecticut Historical Society. In 2000, Steve won the National Watch and Clock Collector's Craftsmanship Award, and in 2010 he was awarded the SAPFM's Cartouche Award for lifetime achievement. 

When Steve is not building period furniture, he practices orthodontics full time at West Bloomfield, Michigan. He is an Adjunct Clinical Professor of Orthodontics at the University of Michigan, where he teaches Craniofacial Orthodontics.  He is a past President of the Associates of the American Wing at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery


2009: Dennis Bork


Dennis Bork's father was a journeyman wood patternmaker, so Dennis grew up around woodworking, making things in his father's workshop. He got a degree in physics and worked in that field for three years. He loved physics, but decided to change fields and took an apprenticeship as a wood patternmaker, like his father had done. Bork took his early training and work and combined it with frequent trips to museums to study period pieces. He has amassed an extensive library and says he believes in attending seminars and classes to continue his education.

Dennis has been chosen for the "Early American Life" magazine Directory of Traditional Crafts for over 19 consecutive years, (1994-2012).

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery






2008: Alfred Sharp


Alf Sharp enrolled as student at Vanderbilt's School of Law, but quickly realized this was not what he wanted to do. Casting around for a while, he lit on woodworking and found his life's passion. Now, as a custom furniture maker, he creates one or two museum quality pieces of furniture at a time in a small shop in Woodbury, TN. His work appears in museums and historic homes throughout the South, and has been featured in numerous major periodicals and books. Sharp is the past president of The Furniture Society and vice president of the Tennessee Association of Craft Artists. He teaches history of furniture at O'More College of Design in Franklin, TN.
  • "Best of Tennessee, 2002" : Tenn Artist Craftsman Assoc., Chattanooga Tn
  • WilsonArt Exhibition 2003 : Philadelphia ,Pa
  • "Art of Tennessee" 2003 : Tenn. State Museum
  • Oaklands Mansion, Carnton House, and other fine public and private homes and offices from New York to California.
  • Fellow – 2004 FAIC/WAG study trip to France
  • Exhibiter – "Curvitures" sponsored by the Furniture Society, 2004 – 2005
  • The Parthenon, Nashville, 2004• Master Woodworkers Show, Knoxville, Tn., 1998 – 2011
  • President – Cumberland Furniture Guild, 2002 –• Board of directors – Cannon County Art Center
  • Exhibiter – Contemporary Classics – Selections from the Society for American Period Furniture, Savannah, Ga. – 2006
  • Board of Trust – The Furniture Society , 2006 –• Instructor – O'more College of Art and Design
  • Board of Directors – Tennessee Association of Craft Artists
  • Studio Furniture – Today ' Leading Woodworkers• Cover article, Woodshop News, Nov. 2006
  • Cover article, American Period Furniture, 2008
  • Board of Trust, Furniture Society, 2006 – President, 2011-2012• Presenter – Winterthur Antiques Forum 2012
  • Presenter – SAPFM summer '12 conference Museum of Southern Decorative Arts
  • Exhibitor – A Tradition of Craft, Connecticut Historical Society 2012


2007: North Bennet Street School


Founded in 1885,  the North Bennet Street School was one of the first institutions for industrial arts in the US.  Since its founding in 1885, NBSS  has adhered to its mission of teaching individuals to master a useful trade, earn a living in their field, and maintain a high level of craftsmanship by combining traditional hand tool skills with the latest technologies.  In addition to furniture making and cabinet making, NBSS offers programs in carpentry and  preservation carpentry, violin making and repair, piano technology, jewelry making and repair, locksmithing, and bookbinding.

Notable NBSS graduates include Cartouche Recipients Will Neptune and Phil Lowe, as well as Lance Patterson and Steve Brown. 

NBSS is accredited by the Accrediting  Commision of Career Schools  and College Technologies (ACCSCT).  ACCSCT is an institution devoted to maintaining educational excellance and integrity in post-secondary career schools and colleges in the United States and Puerto Rico.


2006: Fred Stanley

Fred Stanley 2006 Cartouche Recipient

Fred Stanley has a background in mechanical engineering and works as a preparation manager for Alpha Natural Resources in Abington, VA. He originally began building furniture to furnish his home, and still makes period pieces for his wife and family in the workshop in his garage. Using a combination of some power equipment and mostly hand tools, Stanley’s work exemplifies the heights that can be reached with talent, tools and a little bit of space to work.










2005: Phil Lowe


As a young man, Phil Lowe took a shine to woodworking, and through the years his interest evolved into a passion. In 1972 he entered the furniture making program at North Bennett Street School in Boston, subsequently becoming an instructor from 1975 to 1980, and department head from 1980 to 1985.  In 1986, he left NBSS to devote his energies to the full-time operation of his furniture making business. The business is still in operation today, serving primarily as an educational tool for his furniture-making school, the Furniture Institute of Massachusetts.

Phil also appears as a visiting instructor, seminar speaker and demonstrator at various schools throughout the United States and Canada.  He is the author of many Fine Woodworking articles and a long-time contributing editor. Phil is featured in the Time-Life series on woodworking and in several Taunton Press videos, including Measuring Furniture for Reproduction. He is the recipient of the 2010 Artisanship Award by the Institute of Classical Architecture & Classical America.

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery




2004: Mack S. Headley, Jr.


A fourth-generation woodworker, Mack Headley studied the tools and techniques of 18th century furniture making by repairing and reproducing period furniture in the classic traditions. He began woodworking as a teenager during the late 1960s in his father's Clarke County, Virginia, shop. In the late 1970s, Mack began working in the historic Hay's Cabinetmaking Shop at Colonial Williamsburg. He retired from that position in 2013.

Mack S. Headley & Sons

Carving Techniques and Projects (DVD)



2003: Gene Landon (1934 - 2011)


Gene owned and operated Landon Chemical Inc. He also repaired, restored and reproduced 18th-century furniture. During his career he taught 18th-century furniture making at Olde Mill Cabinet Shoppe in York, Pa.  Gene was a founding member of the Society of American Period Furniture Makers. The Cartouche Award is based on the cartouche which crowns a Philadelphia tall case clock he built.

Pieces of furniture Gene made or restored are displayed in many museums across the United States, as well as in the White House. A life size eagle he carved out of the last living Liberty Tree located at St. John's College, Annapolis Md., is displayed at the Constitution Center, along with a copy of the Rising Sun Chair that he made.

As many period furniture makers did, Gene gained a lot of his knowledge from restoring antiques. By taking apart original pieces he could see how they were made, and examine the tool marks left on the piece. His goal was to try and replicate an original as closely as possible.

 Inspiration: Gene Landon and Seven Hearths

E.E.L.: The Tool Collection of Gene Landon


2002: Robert Whitley


Robert's father was an artist and an antique collector. From 1948 to 2011, Robert restored antique furniture for major antique dealers, private collectors, museums, state and government institutions.

His works are exhibited in the permanent collections of the National Museum of Fine Arts, the Smithonian, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Independence Hall, and many other museums and private collections.

 Major Awards:

  • National Merit Award, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, 1966
  • Craft Multiples Award, Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, 1975
  • Handmade Furniture Exhibit Award, American Craft Museum, 1979-80
  • Individual Grant, National Endowment of the Arts, Washington D.C., 1980
  • First Place Award of Excellence, The American Woodworker Magazine, 1996
  • Bucks County Arts Lifetime Achievement Award, Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce, 2002

Major Commissions:

  • John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library, Boston, Massachusetts
  • Independence Hall, Philadelphia, PA
  • Dolly Madison House
  • Second National Bank of the United States
  • Graff House
  • Franklin Court
  • City Tavern
  • Carpenters' Hall
  • George Washington's Headquarters, Morristown, New Jersey. 
  • Bent's Old Fort, La Junta, Colorado
  • Valley Forge Historical Park
  • Derby House, Salem, Massachusetts
  • Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion Philadelphia, PA
  • The Athenaeum, Philadelphia, PA
  • St. Peter's Episcopal Church

Private Commisions:

  • Philladelphia Queen Anne Arm Chair, circa 1745
  • Chippendale Scro11-Top Highboy, Philadelphia, circa 1745


2001: John McAlister 

JMcAlister award


John worked wood as an amateur for over 35 years, most of it satisfying his passion for building 18th century American period furniture. He was a self-taught, consummate craftsperson whose introduction to furniture making was Marlow's Fine Furniture for the Amateur Cabinetmaker. John made all the pieces in the book.

In fact, no period piece had ever intimidated John, but that is to be expected from this former fighter pilot who flew P-51's during WW II. His home was filled with his work, including his masterpiece Goddard-Townsend secretary. This piece was featured on the back cover of the April 1998 Fine Woodworking.

Like many period furniture makers who started before woodworking magazines appeared, John visited countless museums inspecting and measuring pieces of furniture that he later recreated in his basement workshop.

Furniture in the SAPFM Gallery


2000: Harold Ionson (1920 - 2001)


Harold Ionson was the first recipient of the Cartouche Award for lifetime achievement in period furniture from the Society of American Period Furniture Makers. He apprenticed as a cabinetmaker in the Boston shops in the 1930's, was a union carpenter, served in World War II, and then became a patternmaker until his retirement.

After retiring, he became the consumate recreator of John and Thomas Seymour pieces. Harold decided to build the 'Derby' commode, probably the most lavish piece ever built by them.

The original commode was purchased by Elizabeth Derby West  in 1809.  Although credited to Thomas Seymour, the talents of James Cogswell, Thomas Wightman, and John Penniman were instrumental in its construction.

Because of the time spent on all of the jigs and fixtures needed for construction, Harold built nine Derby commodes over a period of twelve years. (He called them 'recreations' because they were not intended to be exact copies.) 

His wife Martha used to make bandings with him in the shop.

One of the recreations, completed around 2001,  went on auction August 10, 2014. It sold for $20,910.

Harold Ionson: The Master Cabinetmaker's 'Derby' Demi-Lune Commodes. American Period Furniture January 2001, Volume 1Federal Masterpiece Re-Creation .  Antiques & Fine Arts.


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