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05-28-2014 05:29 AM
You needed a low stool or chair to milk the cow in the morning , back when my mom was growing up during the Depression.......is the chair that low or higher???
Milkingstools at most only have 3 legs. uneven ground and need to quickly stand and get out of way of a cow's natural functions precludes sitting so low and stationary. Some milking stools only have one leg and even can have a belt strap thta keeps stool attached to farmer's behind as he moves from cow to cow. Really.
05-22-2014 01:55 PM
Hey, here's a possibility I ran across while researching....maybe at one time these short-legged chairs were rocking chairs....the rockers and some of the lower legs rotted or broke, so they cut them off? You know how they never used to throw stuff away!
You beat me to it. Besides broken rockers, regular chair legs sometimes had wear and tear, splitting, water rotting if left in the barn over winter, so legs were cut short to make the chair sit flat again.
A childs chair has a smaller seat and smaller back, not an adult seat and back.
Dealers will call these a 'birthing chair' to sell them, because that sounds more romantic than 'sawed off chair', but search > antique birthing chair < and you see they have a shallow seat, only deep enough for your cheeks and typically had hand grips.
05-21-2014 08:47 PM
I just bought a short legged herringbone weaved caned ladderback chair from a thrift store. This chair was definitly NOT cut down in the legs. When you sit in it your knees are slightly higher than your hips and it is VERY comfortable. I tend to agree with a previous poster here that it was perhaps for sitting at a spinning wheel instead of on a short backless stool, or I like the other poster who said that they may have been used for sitting in front of the fire. I will post a pick as soon as I take one but it looks similar to the original posters chair unpainted, and the caned seat is intact. The original poster's chair seat is definitly a replacement.
05-05-2014 10:35 PM
This is an old post, but if someone runs across it for information, I have worked in museums for a long time, and many times these short legged chairs are used in spinning, the smaller spinning wheels, as a small flax wheel, were small, a low chair would be used, easier on your back, that's for sure.
04-26-2014 05:41 AM
Antique slipper chairs were made from about 1940 – 1900 in a few different styles including Rococo, Renaissance Revival, Queen Anne and Victorian. Normally they were made of various woods including mahogany and cherry and had upholstered seats and backs. However come imported chairs from Europe were made of other materials including black lacquer. Slipper chairs were about 15 inches from the floor and thus had short legs and were mainly used in a ladies bedroom.
Ladies of the Victorian era wore many clothes and in most cases needed a lot of help getting dressed. Remember that this was the era of laced corsets as well as camisoles and petticoats. So after putting on all that clothing, they needed even more help donning their long stockings and shoes. Thus, the slipper chair was born; a comfortable chair with short legs that a woman could use to sit and put on her stockings and slippers.
05-03-2012 03:43 PM
Short-legged chairs were sometimes called drinking chairs. They were made that way. The purpose was to allow sitting near the fire, enjoying the full heat and view while you and your buddy/spouse had a nightcap. Traditional chairs were too high up and heavy to move around. In old pictures or museums, you may notice short-legged, relatively light weight chairs on either side of the hearth. They could be easily moved in front of the fire and then replaced to get out of the way. With the ebb and flow of the heat of the fire, the chairs could be easily moved forward or backwards. Cheers, to such an evening!
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