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Widdicomb Furniture Co.

American

Admirers of vintage mid-century modern furnishings likely recognize the Widdicomb Furniture Company name for the fruitful partnerships it forged with iconic designers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings and Mario Buatta. But there is more to the Widdicomb story than the albeit quite covetable sofas and bedroom furniture it produced during the middle of the 20th century.

A wealth of pine and oak forests rendered Grand Rapids, Michigan, a logging center during the 1800s, and it eventually gained recognition for its furniture industry. The American city became a destination for furniture makers who hailed from across the United States and beyond. Furniture maker George Widdicomb emigrated from England to the United States in 1845, eventually setting up a cabinet shop in Syracuse, New York, before moving west to Grand Rapids. There, he opened a shop with his four sons, including John Widdicomb, whose name would help carry the family legacy into the 20th century.

The Widdicomb shop in Grand Rapids prospered, as the patriarch’s formal English training allowed him to produce pieces with superior craftsmanship compared to those of his competitors. Although the Civil War halted business and took the life of one of the Widdicomb brothers, the family’s survivors would start anew as Widdicomb Brothers and Richards, soon renamed the Widdicomb Furniture Company.

John Widdicomb, however, split from the family business in 1897 to create the John Widdicomb Company, where he would go on to focus on Louis XV- and French Provincial-style furnishings. Chairs made in these styles have distinct characteristics, such as floral motifs carved in the frames and gently angled backrests. John's company also remained a family affair: The founder’s son, Harry, assumed control of the company when his father died in 1910, while John's nephew Ralph Widdicombe — who retained the English spelling of his last name and joined the John Widdicomb Company at its start — designed every single piece of the offerings at his uncle's manufacturing outfit until he retired in 1951. Ralph was an internationally distinguished furniture designer whose modern mahogany bedroom suite won first prize at the Paris Exposition in 1900.

The original iteration of Widdicomb, which was helmed by John's older brother William while John ran his own brand, had shifted from making period revival styles of furniture, such as Georgian and Chippendale, to manufacturing modern pieces in the late 1920s. Today vintage Widdicomb seating, tables and other pieces produced during the postwar years are particularly sought after by collectors of mid-20th-century furniture.

In 1959, master woodworker George Nakashima created his Origins collection for Widdicomb when the firm merged with Mueller Furniture Corporation and was known, for around 10 years, as Widdicomb-Mueller. Origins, a revered Shaker-influenced group of nightstands, upholstered lounge chairs, dining-room tables and more, saw Nakashima working with woods like Carpathian elm and laurel in his Pennsylvania studio.

Eventually, the two Widdicomb companies would combine in 1970, operating under the name John Widdicomb Co.

In 2002, the business closed after more than a century of operations, and its assets were acquired by Stickley Furniture. Interestingly, it was not the first time Widdicomb and Stickley overlapped: In the final years of the 19th century, the companies opened a shared storehouse in London, while John Widdicomb and Albert Stickley would travel Europe together for the purposes of research.

Find vintage Widdicomb coffee tables, case pieces, dining chairs and more on 1stDibs.

Average Sold Price
$5,726
Styles
Materials
'Ming' Sideboard / Credenza by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb, 1950s
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This elegant fully restored 'Ming' sideboard by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb (USA) features gorgeous walnut grain with large brass handles. The center cabinet has four intern...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Brass

T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb Flip Top Server Bar Cart, Newly Restored
By T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings, Widdicomb Furniture Co.
Located in South Bend, IN
An exceptional Mid-Century Modern extendable bar cart server Designed by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb USA, 1950s Bleached walnut and brass and casters Measures: 3...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Brass

T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb Upholstered Slipper Chair
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Garnerville, NY
T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb slipper chair. The slipper chair traditionally is an armless chair that sits closer to the floor than other chairs. Featuring that elegantly tape...
Category

1940s American Hollywood Regency Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Fabric, Foam, Wood

Pair of T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb Open Armchairs
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Chicago, IL
Restored T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings maple framed open armchairs with new dark chocolate wool upholstery.
Category

1950s American Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Velvet, Maple

Mid-Century Modern Slipper Chairs by T.H. Robsjohn Gibbings for Widdicomb
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Poughkeepsie, NY
A fabulous and timeless pair of slipper chairs by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb. The graceful curvy lines complement these scaled up accent chairs. Tastefully reupholstered in...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Fabric, Walnut

Robsjohn Gibbings Widdicomb MCM Walnut Cane and Brass Glovebox Nightstands Pair
By T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings, Widdicomb Furniture Co.
Located in Countryside, IL
Robsjohn gibbings for widdicomb mid century walnut, cane and brass glovebox nightstands - pair. Each nightstand measures: 20 wide x 21.25 deep x 23.25 inches high. All pieces o...
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Brass

Gibbings for Widdicomb Mid-Century Modern Round Walnut Coffee Table Tapered Legs
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Rockaway, NJ
Gibbings for Widdicomb Mid-Century Modern round walnut coffee table tapered legs.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Walnut

Ebonized Coffee Table Bench by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb
By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Ebonized coffee table or bench by T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings for Widdicomb.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Widdicomb Furniture Co.

Materials

Mahogany

Browse all Furniture from Widdicomb Furniture Co.
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Widdicomb Furniture Co. furniture for sale on 1stDibs

Furniture from Widdicomb Furniture Co. are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. There are many options in our collection of furniture from Widdicomb Furniture Co., although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. There are 299 vintage versions of these items in stock, while there is 0 modern edition to choose from as well. Many original furniture by Widdicomb Furniture Co. were created in North America during the 20th century in the Mid-Century Modern style. Many customers also consider furniture by Paul Frankl, Lane Furniture and Mastercraft if you are looking for additional options. Prices for Widdicomb Furniture Co. furniture may vary depending upon size, time period and other attributes. The price for these items starts at US$250 and tops out at US$110,000, while pieces like these can sell for US$4,900 on average.

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