American; Hancock, Massachusetts
26 1/2 x 94 x 12 in. (67.3 x 238.8 x 30.5 cm)
Friends of the American Wing Fund, 1966 (66.10.2)
A Shaker pine bench was used with the community dining table, 66.10.1. The butterfly-wing or double-ogee supports, two pair on each of the three legs, were typical of the Watervliet, New York, community, but were also used in other settlements. This bench is said to have come from Hancock, Massachusetts, the third Shaker community, founded in 1790, which was in close physical proximity to Watervliet and New Lebanon, New York, both founded in 1787. The bench was a favorite Shaker seating form: it was versatile, easy to move around, simple to construct, and capable of seating a large number of people with economy of space.