Pair of Plail Brothers Barrel Back Chairs


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Plail Brothers Chair Company

Plail Brothers made a 3-piece parlor set that included these two chairs and a two-seater settle. We do not have the settle. The spindles go to the floor and both chairs have drop-in leather covered seats. Each chair originally had a paper label. Only a partial paper label remains on this chair and it reads “PLAIL Wayland.” The remainder of the label is missing. The label on the rocking chair is missing although it is obvious where it was once located. These are most unusual and very rare.


John Plail worked for the Binghamton Chair Co. in Binghamton, N.Y., before he and some other Binghamton Chair employees left and founded the W.H. Gunlocke Chair Co. in 1902. Within a few years, John and his brother Joseph left Gunlocke to start their own company, Plail Bros. Chair Co., in Wayland. The company is best known today for its chairs and settees, many with slatted barrel backs (straight slats inserted in a back slightly rounded at the corners). The Plail Bros. factory burned down in 1914, but it was rebuilt and remained in business until 1933. Collectors look for Plail’s early Arts and Crafts barrel-back furniture.


Condition: Both chairs appear to have the original finish but both seats have been re-upholstered.

Plail Brothers Chair Company
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