Painted Food Safe (Pie Safe)
Poplar, A Soft Conifer (likely white pine), & Indented Sheet Metal
Unknown American Origin
66 3/4” H. x 51” x 25 1/4”
Ref. No kit47
Patriotically inspired food safe in old green with twelve yellow painted sheet metal panels likely dating to the mid 19th century. Both doors and either side frame containing three punched metal panels, all with a unique composition independently presented on each stack. The result are four individual designs. This format unknown within my experience. The inside edge of the door frames share the original carefully applied yellow of the punched panels. The case’s present dark green paint is likely a later 19th century overcoat to a lighter green which covered the original red. That middle turquoise coat would conflict with the yellow paneling resulting in the safe’s awkward years. The present coat displays harmoniously with the panels as surely did the red. Among the better conceived food safes surviving with choice coloring and unusual paneling.
Images should cover condition issues which include metal loss at bottom corner on one side panel; shelf missing from the interior; the lower portion of one drawer facing split East to West early in the safe’s existence and subsequently misaligned, glued, and square nailed prior to the present green coat; a later slight wood loss at that split; drawer knobs are period brass early Federal conversions in the original pull sites; the cast escutcheon on door appears to possibly be original with a knob later inserted through the aperture matching the drawer pulls; locks on the door and the once locking drawer are now missing; a portion of one backboard is lost; one back foot is about a half inch low requiring a shim to level though thankfully the bottom of the legs are free of decay; an original drawer runner detached though complete; and the eagle over flag panels on the safe’s proper right door have a clouding substance over the surface. This unknown shadowing will possibly disappear with the correct cleaning agent as evidenced by a drip streak on the top panel. That unidentified solvent spill accidentally performed the task by removing the toning agent without disturbing the original color therefore leaving a trail which matches the tint of the opposing door panels. One can observe the thin vertical steak in an attached image. The interior of safe with a diluted light yellow wash which is old possibly original though now lost on the remaining shelf and bottom board.