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Sunday, January 1, 2012

H. Holtzman and Sons Oak Piano Stool (Ca. 1900)

Another piece that I restored for Christmas was an Oak piano stool made by H.Holtzman and Sons in Columbus, Ohio. Judging by the history of the company and also by the overall condition and style of the stool, I judged it's age to be right around 1900, give or take 10 years.

The H. Holtzman and Sons company was founded sometime in the 1860's by Henry Holtzman in
either Pittsburgh, PA or New York City,NY. (Sources Differ on this point.) In 1893 the business was moved to Colombus, Ohio and was run by the sons Frank (and possibly Charles). Henry Holtzman Passed away in December of 1904. I n Ohio, the business grew to be one of the largest piano stool and piano cover manufacturers in the country. An early advertisement for the stools reads as follows:

Henry Holtzman and Sons
Manufacturers and importers of
Piano Scarfs
Grand Covers, Square Covers,
Rubber, and Gossamer Covers
a large variety of
Piano Stools
2121 t0 2122 E. Main St.
Columbus, Ohio

To view the advertisement, follow this link:

http://mis.mclemore.com/mtr/MTR-1895-21-2/MTR-1895-21-2-10.pdf


They certainly did produce a large variety of piano stools, a quick Google search will show images of many different styles of stools made from many different types of wood. As for the piano covers, it is hard to know much more about that side of the business.

The factory mentioned in the advertisement has been demolished now, but I was able to find an image of it which I have provided below.

The business seems to have had it's heyday in the early part of the 2oth century. I found many references to it and one included mention of a Chicago branch of the company. The business was run by various members of the Holtzman Family until it closed in 1959.

I was able to find out the manufacturer of this stool because the mounting plate for the screw mechanism on the underside of the seat had the words "H.Holtzman and Sons Colum, Ohio" Cast in it. I neglected to get a photo of this, but was able to find a photo of a similar (and later) mounting plate on the internet.
Here is a photo of the stool when it arrived in my shop. The finish was in bad shape and the joinery on the stool needed some repair work.There was also a crack in the seat that needed to be filled.
One of the legs had been replaced during the lifetime of the stool, and it had later been repaired at the top joint with a large bolt going through the main post. This had great visual appeal, and the customer and I decided it was part of the history of the stool and should be left in place. This was until I discovered that the bolt was preventing the stool from raising and lowering fully. With this in mind, the bolt was removed and the joinery fixed on the leg. All off the other repairs were made and a new finish put on the stool. Here are two photos of the stool after it was completed.

10 comments:

  1. Mr. Power restored the stool for me which I gave to my son as a Christmas present. It belonged to my grand parents who were born in the 1890's. I believe it is a possibility that it might have belonged to one of their parents. The stool was in really bad shape. It was in pieces among trash to be thrown out. I rescued it and stored it for 25 years. Mr. Power did an absolutely superb restoration. I doubt that it looked any better when it was brand new. If anyone needs a piece of furniture restored, they definitely would not go wrong by having him do it.

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  2. I have this very same stooll! Well, the before picture..... Found it in my grandmothers house some years back, you have restored it beautifully.

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  3. very much like this blog, hope to be able to enjoy it this new year as well as we all could last year, all the best for 2012,

    kind regards

    http://www.ruedigerbenediktshopping.com/english/

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  4. Whats the value of one of these stools? My grandmother gave one to me (and the piano)trying to figure it out to add it to my homeowners insurance if it is worth much

    Thanks

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  5. I just bought the piano stool in Goliad, Texas, but need the female part of the swivel hardware. The hardware attached to the seat is stamped Holtzman 1908. Any chance of finding that?

    It is a beautiful stool!

    -Carol D.
    dituri4@verizon.net

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  6. Hi John Greg here, so your stool has wooden legs, the stool i have has brass stockings with glass marbles in the claw feet, any ideas thanks ggroat11@yahoo.com

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  7. just picked one up in a charity shop in norwich norfolk england for £15,with glass feet in very good condition structially,but the varnish needs stripping down to bear wood ,so ive got a winter project

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  8. We have an old piano stool and yesterday one leg busted off where it joins the base. I was going to pitch it, but maybe it can be repaired! Two leg 'braces' are also broken off; I have one of them. Any suggestions for how to find someone who can repair broken off legs?? PA/NY area.

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  9. I am restoring an old drafting table stool much like this one. No markings or mfg. indication. Like you, I always like to include as much as the history as possible Havea to replace the seat support which is destroyed. Will have to rob a piano stool like the one you restored.

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  10. I have one with the claw feet holding a clear ball. Stool is intact and in amazing shape. What is the value of it?

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