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The Bonhams Skinner auction where this chair sold listed it as a Harvard University Windsor chair, bringing together two icons of colonial America. Harvard University, originally called the New College, was founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1636, making it the oldest college in the United States. This means that Harvard predates the Windsor chair in America.

The first Windsor chairs were made in England in the seventeenth century, and they were being made in Philadelphia by the 1730s. There were many variations on the Windsor chair, especially in America.
American designers were the first to add rockers and writing arms to Windsor chairs. The chair can be made in many shapes, and they can be easily distinguished by the shape of the chair’s back.
No matter the style, a Windsor chair can be recognized by its spindle back, turned legs, and stretcher base. They are made with stick-and-socket construction, meaning the chairs are built by inserting the legs and the back spindles into holes in the seat. Windsor chairs and similar styles are also called stick furniture.

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Q: I have a fairly rare, autographed baseball from the 1940s, signed by one of the most famous baseball players of all time. The authenticity of the item, signature, etc. is all documented.
Do you have a good source where I can get a fair estimate of value?

A: Value depends on the fame of the player, significance of the event, rarity, and condition. The highest price paid for an autographed ball was $3 million for Mark McGuire’s 70th home run ball, the record for home runs in a single season, in 1998. You didn’t say who autographed your ball. Babe Ruth is often considered the greatest baseball player of all time. His autographed ball, the first home run hit in an All Star game (1933), sold for $805,000 in 2006. Babe Ruth autographed balls often come up for auction and prices vary. A ball in near mint to mint condition sold last year for $7,620. Contact an auction house that specializes in sports memorabilia. You can find some listed in’s Business Directory.

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