Attributed to Saint-Pierre, Martinique; 1770–90
Courbaril, goncalo alves, mountain laurel, cedrela, white pine, yellow pine, cypress (microanalysis)
Museum purchase with funds provided by the Special Fund for Collection Objects 1988.0125
The scrolled feet, curved frame members, and deep cornice on this armoire reflect the provincial French style adapted by cabinetmakers in areas of the Caribbean under French colonial control. The design, as well as the use of the tropical hardwood courbaril, indicates its origin in the city of St. Pierre, Martinique. The incorporation of white pine attests to an active lumber trade with ports in mainland North America, the source for this wood. Around 1850, the German immigrant Frederick Sheele and his family purchased this armoire to furnish a boarding house in Faubourg Marigny, New Orleans.