Skip to main content
  • Want more images or videos?
    Request additional images or videos from the seller
1 of 9

Exceptional Pair of Modern Commodes by American of Martinsville, circa 1950

$36,000per set

About

This magnificent pair of commodes is shipped as professionally photographed and described in the listing narrative: Meticulously professionally restored and completely installation ready. A fabulous meticulously restored pair of cream lacquer chests from a rare series by American of Martinsville, circa 1950. Stout, expertly crafted mahogany case construction with stunning form. Lovely wormhole detail on the drawer fronts add the element of texture. The A of M designers were always great interpreters of furniture produced by competing manufacturers. Here, the influence of both Paul Laszlo and George Nakashima are evident. While the chests will integrate seamlessly into a modern setting, they are particularly interesting when juxtaposed against a traditional backdrop. Excellent Restored Condition. Professionally cleaned and re-lacquered. Retains the Maker mark. The price noted is for the pair.

Details

  • Creator
  • Dimensions
    Height: 31 in. (78.74 cm)Width: 38 in. (96.52 cm)Depth: 22 in. (55.88 cm)
  • Sold As
    Set of 2
  • Style
    Mid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    circa 1950
  • Condition
    Refinished. Wear consistent with age and use. Excellent Restored Condition. Meticulous professional restoration in the Tom Robinson Modern facility. Completely Installation Ready.
  • Seller Location
    Atlanta, GA
  • Reference Number
    Seller: Tom Robinson Modern - WH91stDibs: LU8581929702

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    Ships From: Atlanta, GA
  • Return Policy

    This item cannot be returned.

1stDibs Buyer Protection Guaranteed
If your item arrives not as described, we’ll work with you and the seller to make it right. Learn More

About the Manufacturer

American of Martinsville

American of Martinsville is today revered as one of the finest manufacturers of mid-century modern furniture in the United States, but its beginnings were unexpectedly humble.

Well ahead of the Civil War, tobacco was a cash crop in places such as Virginia, and the plant was grown with frequency on farms in Martinsville and elsewhere. In the early 1900s, the business around tobacco was changing and the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company was expanding nationally, buying any Virginia factories in reach. Former tobacco producers Ancil Witten and Charles Keesee turned away from the business in 1906 and, with merely $30,000 in capital (and the support of local business leaders), began to manufacture bedroom furniture under the name American Furniture Company.

In the 1920s, American Furniture Company expanded its offerings from bedroom furnishings. Alongside tallboy dressers and nightstands, Witten and Keesee’s outfit began to offer a range of dining-room sets to the discerning customer. By the 1950s, the name had been changed to American of Martinsville and the brand had gained a reputation for exquisite craftsmanship as well as its variety of furniture styles (Hollywood Regency, chinoiserie). Mass-marketed furniture meant big business in the postwar years and throughout the 20th century in Virginia, and factories owned by companies like Bassett Furniture and American of Martinsville remained busy as suburbanites bought furniture to fill the homes they were moving into.

It isn’t difficult to spot American of Martinsville’s sturdy, solid designs — the lacquered walnut nightstands, mahogany coffee tables and more have long earned the admiration of mid-century modernism enthusiasts. The company’s high profile also owes to prominent attributes that distinguish its well-made vintage furniture, such as the use of wooden slats — inspired by Scandinavian modernism — on hutches and cabinet doors, the famous brass x’s inlaid on the tops of tables and dressers and the stately stacked type of the American of Martinsville logo, which usually appears in drawer interiors. The stamp prominently features an eagle perched atop the lettering, its broad wings spread across the “American” portion.

Besides quality manufacturing, American of Martinsville is additionally recognized for having incorporated the trends of the day. Inspired by designers like George Nakashima and Paul Laszlo, the brand was also known for innovations with wood. Merton Gershun was one of the company’s most prolific designers, and he was responsible for some of its most successful modern furniture lines using the richer, darker woods that would become emblematic of mid-century furniture. Gershun’s most popular line was reportedly Dania, with its sleek walnut credenzas fitted with stylish brass accents and large drawers. Today, American of Martinsville specializes in furniture for the healthcare and hospitality industries.

Shop a wide selection of vintage American of Martinsville mid-century modern sideboards, side tables and more on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
5.0
Located in Atlanta, GA
Vetted Seller
These experienced sellers undergo a comprehensive evaluation by our team of in-house experts.
Established in 1998
1stDibs seller since 2014
330 sales on 1stDibs
Typical response time: 4 hours
More From This Seller
  • Dramatic Restored Nine-Drawer Chest by American of Martinsville, circa 1950
    By American of Martinsville
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    A beautiful example from a rare series by American of Martinsville, circa 1950. Stout, expertly made mahogany case construction finished in cream lacquer. Fabulous wormhole detail on...
    Category

    Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Mahogany

  • Rare Restored Modern Chest by American of Martinsville
    By American of Martinsville
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    An absolutely jaw-dropping chest from a rare series by American of Martinsville, circa 1960. Stout hardwood case construction with brass and leather accents. Fabulous detail and craf...
    Category

    Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Hardwood

  • Elegant Restored Pair of Modern Maple Chests by John Stuart, circa 1950
    By John Stuart
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    A stunning restored pair of modern chests by John Stuart, circa 1950. The sleek clean design is clearly influenced by the Florence Knoll case production of the same period. Expertly ...
    Category

    Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Maple

  • Coveted Pair of Saffron Walnut Commodes by T H Robsjohn-Gibbings, dated 1950
    By Widdicomb Furniture Co., T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    This magnificent pair of commodes is shipped as professionally photographed and described in the listing narrative: Meticulously professionally restored and completely installation r...
    Category

    Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Walnut

  • Glamorous Restored Pair of Grosfeld House Style Commodes, circa 1940
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    A glamorous pair of three drawer commodes, circa 1940. Stout expertly crafted mahogany construction. Clean elegant case design accented with a single large solid brass pull. While th...
    Category

    Vintage 1940s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Brass

  • Restored American of Martinsville 6 Drawer Chest- Pair Available
    By American of Martinsville
    Located in Atlanta, GA
    An exquisite example from a rare series by American of Martinsville, circa 1960. Stout, expertly made mahogany case construction restored in cream lacquer. Fabulous, chunky solid bra...
    Category

    Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

    Materials

    Brass

You May Also Like

Rosewood Ebony Small Chest / Nightstand by American of Martinsville
By American of Martinsville
Located in Cincinnati, OH
A four drawer rosewood and ebony toned small chest or nightstand having rich graining with chrome pulls . A great chest for a tight space or use as a nightstand because of it's talle...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Night Stands

Materials

Wood

American of Martinsville French Regency Black Lacquered Nightstands, Refinished
By American of Martinsville
Located in South Bend, IN
A gorgeous pair of mid-century French Regency style three-drawer bedside chests By American of Martinsville USA, 1960s Black lacquered walnut, with original brass hardware. Measu...
Category

Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Night Stands

Materials

Brass

Mid-Century Modern Matching Pair of Chests, Commodes or Large Night Stands
By American of Martinsville
Located in Philadelphia, PA
A handsome clean line pair of chests by American of Martinsville from the 1960's. They feature beautifully grained walnut with aluminum hardware. Price includes the pair.
Category

Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

Materials

Aluminum

Mid-Century Modern Walnut Dresser by American of Martinsville
By American of Martinsville
Located in Brooklyn, NY
This unique two-piece vintage dresser features a rich walnut finish, louvered front cabinet and unique brass trim. This well made Mid-Century American of Martinsville storage piece f...
Category

Vintage 1970s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

Materials

Walnut

Mid-Century Modern Louvered Front Dresser by American of Martinsville
By American of Martinsville
Located in Brooklyn, NY
This vintage walnut dresser features two stacking cabinets with a mix of shelf and drawer storage. Mid-Century manufacturer American of Martinsville crafted this stylish highboy dres...
Category

Vintage 1970s American Mid-Century Modern Dressers

Materials

Walnut

Merton Gershun Bali Hi Dresser by American of Martinsville, ca. 1950’s
By American of Martinsville, Merton Gershun
Located in New York, NY
Chic and stylish 5 drawer dresser in bleached mahogany with decorative faux bamboo front. The chest features an architecturally inspired case, which surrounds the drawer fronts, crea...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

Materials

Mahogany

Vintage Lacquered Dresser by American of Martinsville
By American of Martinsville
Located in Burbank, CA
A stunning vintage lacquered dresser designed and manufactured by American of Martinsville in the United States, circa 1950s. This elegant dresser has been professionally restored in...
Category

Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Dressers

Materials

Brass

Pair of Mid-Century Modern Commodes, Chests by Renzo Rutili for John Stuart
By Renzo Rutili
Located in Stamford, CT
Pair of Mid-Century Modern commodes, Chests by Renzo Rutili for John Stuart, Fully Refinished. An absolutely stunning pair of bedside cabinets or chests having Birdseye Maple drawer ...
Category

Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

Materials

Wood

American of Martinsville Mid-Century Modern Dresser or Bureau
By American of Martinsville
Located in Studio City, CA
A clean, beautifully designed Mid-Century Modern dresser with five pull-out drawers. In very nice, original vintage condition. Quite unique and rare. Would stand out in any room. ...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dressers

Materials

Walnut

Pair of Mid-Century Modern Style Chests of Drawers / Commodes / Night Stands
Located in Stamford, CT
Pair of Mid-Century Modern style chests of drawers, each having the white painted enclosing case fitted with three drawers of red, green and blue color, raised on a plinth.
Category

Vintage 1970s American Mid-Century Modern Commodes and Chests of Drawers

Materials

Wood

Recently Viewed

View More

The 1stDibs Promise

Learn More

Expertly Vetted Sellers

Confidence at Checkout

Price-Match Guarantee

Exceptional Support

Buyer Protection

Trusted Global Delivery