Walnut Campaign Chest by Hill & Millard

Walnut Campaign Chest by Hill & Millard
Click on an image to enlarge

Walnut Campaign Chest by Hill & Millard

C. 1880 England
Signed/InscribedHill & Millard, 7 Duncannon Street, London, W. Height42.75 inch
108.58 cm
Width39.00 inch
99.06 cm
Depth17.50 inch
44.45 cm
A figured walnut Campaign Chest with straight grain walnut to the top and sides.

It was common with walnut military chests to use solid, straight grain to the carcass, which would take much more wear as it was slid in and out of its packing cases. The better, figured walnut was applied in book matched veneers to the drawer fronts as the show timber. What is unusual about this walnut chest is that the maker, Hill & Millard, painted figuring onto the solid walnut edges of the drawer dividers. When first done it would have hardly been noticeable. It is more so now due to the aging of the wood. We have seen this method of painting the timber on a secretaire walnut campaign chest by the same maker.

Although there is no maker’s label or mark to this chest, Hill & Millard were known to stamp their locks with their name and this chest is no exception. The stronger, top right-hand drawer lock bears their name and address of 7 Duncannon Street, London, W. They were very good makers who went the extra step to ensure the quality of their work. This can be seen with the gilt lacquered, brass strapwork which is oversized to the drawer dividers but cut to their width. Most makers would simply use smaller straps. A single tramline mould has also been cut into the drawer edges. The drawer liners are made of ash and the turned feet are original to the chest.

Walnut campaign chests were the best you could buy when first made and this has held true today. Add to this one of the best Victorian makers of campaign furniture and you have a very good piece of furniture. Circa 1880.


Select a Location

Select a Specialism