In today’s day and age, writing notes by hand has become a style statement. And someone with a real taste in fine furniture has taken home a beautifully carved out 1765-Catherine Goddard Chippendale Block-and-Shell Carved and Figured Mahogany Bureau Table, which was estimated by Christie’s to fetch between $700,000 and $900,000. But cabinetmaker John Goddard’s masterpiece was sold at a staggering $5,682,500, making it the most expensive American furniture sold in an auction.
The table features a handwritten label on the table’s top drawer, which shows that Goddard crafted this knee-hole bureau, especially for his daughter, Catherine Goddard, as a wedding gift. The table was a family treasure until John’s great-great-granddaughter Mary Briggs (Weaver) Case sold the table off in the 1900s. When the table was the last put under the hammer in January 2005, it earned $940,000.