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Object Record

Image of 01.C.57, Chess: Chess Set
Chess Set

Image of 01.C.57, Chess: Chess Set, with box
Chess Set, with box

Catalog Number01.C.57
Object NameChess
TitleChess Set
ArtistUnknown
Date18th c.
DescriptionBoard with 32 wooden pieces, 16 unfinished and 16 painted black, housed in original wooden box. Two pawns are later replacements. Pasted on inside of box lid is John Bartram’s name. The board, while contemporary, is not original to the pieces.
LabelJohn Bartram was America’s best-known naturalist of the late 18th century and its first native-born botanist. Along with his friend Benjamin Franklin, Bartram worked to establish and grow the APS. Like Franklin, Bartram was an avid chess player, and this chess set reportedly belonged to him. However, apart from his name on the inside of the lid, there is no clear provenance for the set.
MaterialBoard: wood (inlaid); Pieces: wood (natural and black-painted); Box: wood
Dimension DetailsBoard: 18.625 x 15
Pieces: 3.5 (tallest)
Box: 4.25 x 11 x 6
Credit lineAmerican Philosophical Society. Gift of John Harbeson, 17 January 1968.
Search Terms18th century
 eighteenth century
 game
ImageChess Set
 Chess Set, with box
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