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RESEARCHING JAMESTOWN LOUNGE


Posted By Anne Cr0nin & Friend, 8/10/1998

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I have been researching the Jamestown Lounge Company and have uncovered a lot of interesting information. In their day, they were "the Cadillac" of the industry, but gradually faded out. They were known for a line of British Oak and later Feudal Oak.

Mr. Arthur H.. Greenlund, one of the founders of the company was active in the Jamestown Furniture Market Association, and I am sure was one of forces that brought the market to Jamestown, NY. Mr. Greenlund was also well known in Grand Rapids. I have been researching this company and have uncovered a lot of interesting information. In their day, they were "the Cadillac" of the industry, but gradually faded out. This company that once employed 400 people and shipped furniture around the world has really become an enigma.

In 1912 there was a household show in Chicago that got a very bad review because the circus had been in there the week before. According to The Grand Rapids Furniture Record June 1912 p. 179 "You can't rush out a lot of elephants one week and rush in a household show the next week." According to a 1928-29 Furniture Reference book,

The Jamestown Furniture Market Association was organized in 1914 and the Exposition building opened in 1929. Jamestown pioneered the early market dates, May and November.

I have done some research the Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington, Delaware and well as the Winterthur Museum library. I will go to the Library when I visit my daughter in North Carolina.

In one of your letters you offered to put someone in touch with some of the more senior members of the Greater NY home furnishings association. I would like to contact them to get more information about the Jamestown Lounge Company.

Anne Cronin from Bremerton, WA and I have been collaborating on researching our JL furniture. Anne has set up a Web page and I have become the historian of our venture.

Thank you for your help. Click on the above to see our page. I have a lot of other information that I would be happy to share.


Replies

From mlc62472, 12/15/2013  8:56 PM

I would be interested in finding out more about the Americana Casual line. I have 4 accent/coffee tables that I'd like to find out more about.

From forbecks, 10/17/2013  11:50 AM

I have a bedroom set by JL in the Colonnade Collection.  It was originally purchased from a designer in Sacramento, California and shipped from the JL factory.  It is a simple design of solid oak. It was purchased in the early 70's.  We have a 9 drawer dresser, king size head board, side mirror, and slide top desk.  

I have moved a few times with corporate transfers and the furniture has been all over the country. Currently it is in NC.  We would like to know if this small collection has any value.  I am retiring soon and plan on down sizing so I want to sell what I have. 

From galleryg, 10/14/2013  7:14 PM

Hello,
I'm new and pardon my ignorance but I know nothing of furniture. I ran across this site while researching the JL Line. For those of you interested I have a piece of JL (I believe it is a Regency style Chair) that has been identified as a piece of the collection from the Iolani Royal Palace in Hawaii. Provenance indicates it was purchased at auction in 1902 in Hawaii and was brought back to a Womens High Fashion store in Aberdeen WA (Last own by my parents). It is a beautiful and very stout yet tastefully ornate chair that I believed was to be manufactured in the 1890's. It has an elegant oval bronze manufacturing tag that is still in tact. Story is that a Visiting U.S. Dignitary gifted this item to the Royal Family. I am trying to find out more information as to who that might have been and more specifically what the date and purpose of the visit was.

Unfortunately, not knowing what it was originally I did not make any photos of it before it was recovered.
In it's original condition it was very elaborately upholstered. The fabric was lush red velvet backed with some sort of heavy broadcloth. The Piping for the cushions was gold silk with REAL spun gold thread. It was attached to the frame with hammered bronze tacks and at its point of attachment it had a silk gold brocade border trim to which long looping gold silk tassels with interwoven spun gold thread dangled. The cushions themselves were filled with straw which was wrapped and layered with horse hair.

I am only certain that the Chair was purchased at an auction of furnishings from the Iolani Royal Palace in 1902 and that it has been in the possession of the owners of Brower's Clothing store since that point, and that it has the original manufacturing tag. If anyone here has any other information as to who might have originally purchased the chair or has information as to what kind of chair it is, I would be eternally grateful. I have images of it but I do not know how or where to post in relation to this message, so guidance would be appreciated. I had the chair recovered in 1991 but did so in Royal Blue velvet sans tassels and piping. All else is original and untouched. At that time the person doing the work offered me $12,000 for the piece before it was even touched. 

I am trying to get as much info as possible about this as it has come time that I must let go of the item due to medical bill related to recent diagnosis of Leukemia. I am hoping to either have a benefactor from the friends of the Iolani Palace or one of the Major Auction houses (Sotheby's/Christie's) purchase it. 

Once again Thanks in advance to any of you that might offer your insight. Also hopefully I can post pictures so that collectors out there may use this as a reference example of the exquisite early work of this company.

From Rickl, 9/21/2013  1:40 PM

I would also be interested in a catalog covering Jamestown Lounge American Casual line-I have a few pictures, but does anyone have access to more?
Thanks!

From Rickl, 9/21/2013  1:38 PM

I would also be interested in a catalog covering Jamestown Lounge American Casual line-I have a few pictures, but does anyone have access to more?
Thanks!

From Rickl, 9/16/2013  9:27 PM

I would love to see a British Oak catalog if anyone has one they would share. My email is Rlundqui@yahoo.com.
I live in Jamestown, NY and have many pieces from all 4 of their lines, and am still collecting!

From bnewmark, 9/28/2012  8:32 PM

My mother has a beautiful Solid Dark Oak Dining Room Set
By Jamestown Lounge from their Colonnade Collection.  It was manufactured 11/2/1971.  

The table is 90" closed and opens to 126".  It is truly magnificent.  There 6 chairs, as well as the coordinating buffet and server.  

The whole set is in very good condition.  We are near Philadelphia. Please let me know if anyone is interested in purchasing the set.  We would love to see it go to someone who will love it for another 40 years. Reasonable offers will be considered. Please email jarednewmark [at] gmail.com  Pictures available to those who are interested.

From Annette VandenHeuvel , 9/16/2012  1:07 PM

Sarah - I would be interested in a catalogue that shows the British Oak line.  My email is annettevandenh@gmail.com.   Thank you!

From Annette VandenHeuvel , 9/16/2012  1:03 PM

My husband and I are the grateful recipients of his grandparent's British Lounge living room set (couch, 2 chairs, coffee table, and 2 end tables) that they used at their Lake Michigan cottage.  Family lore has it that the set was purchased at Grand Rapids' Klingman's Furniture store in 1946. I would be interested in purchasing any accompanying pieces...living room or dining. Thank you to everyone for sharing your knowledge of the funiture's history...much appreciated!

From Annette VandenHeuvel , 9/16/2012  1:02 PM

My husband and I are the grateful recipients of his grandparent's British Lounge living room set (couch, 2 chairs, coffee table, and 2 end tables) that they used at their Lake Michigan cottage.  Family lore has it that the set was purchased at Grand Rapids' Klingman's Furniture store in 1946. I would be interested in purchasing any accompanying pieces...living room or dining. Thank you to everyone for sharing your knowledge of the funiture's history...much appreciated!

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