William Ramsay's Desk and Bookcase


This desk, known as a “secretary”, has an attached two-shelf bookcase. Made entirely out of dark wood this piece boasts myriad compartments and drawers to house the many financial records and books of its owner, William Ramsay, a merchant and shopkeeper. The desk is embellished with intricate carvings and is ornamented at its topmost point with a finial.

Date Made: 1770s or earlier

Location: Currently not on view (hardware)Currently not on view (furniture ornament)

Place Made: United Kingdom: Scotland, EdinburghPlace Used: United States: Virginia, Alexandria

Subject: Furniture


See more items in: Home and Community Life: Domestic Life, Cultures & Communities, Work, American Enterprise, Domestic Furnishings

Exhibition: American Enterprise

Exhibition Location: National Museum of American History

Related Publication: Sewer, Andy; Allison, David; Liebhold, Peter; Davis, Nancy; Franz, Kathleen G.. American Enterprise: A History of Business in America

Credit Line: The Heirs of William and Dennis Ramsay

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: DL.62.0549Catalog Number: 62.0549Accession Number: 220760

Object Name: Slant-Front Desk and Bookcasedesk

Measurements: overall, lock: 5/8 in x 2 5/8 in x 2 in; 1.5875 cm x 6.6675 cm x 5.08 cmoverall, hinges, each: 1/4 in x 1 3/4 in x 1 3/8 in; .635 cm x 4.445 cm x 3.4925 cm

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-0967-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_308117

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.