Wellington Chest

A Wellington Chest is a piece of travel furniture designed for military officers going on campaigns and so had to be compact, practical and easy to dismantle and fold.

Named after the 1st Duke of Wellington, the first chest of this type appears in the 1820s and is characterised by a tall narrow shape usually with a flap that locks on one side. Usually made from mahogany, walnut and rosewood they continued to be manufactured throughout the Victorian period.

Some designs featured a fitted secretaire taking up two drawer heights, but the all drawer models are considered the more desirable from a collector’s point of view. Some secretaire versions have been converted to all drawer models because of this, and can be distinguished by having newer drawer linings in two of the drawers.

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