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» Choose Outdoor Furniture: Adirondack Chairs

How Did I Do It? > Home & Garden > Choose Outdoor Furniture: Adirondack Chairs
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On the shores of Lake Champlain near the Adirondack Mountains of New York is a small town named Westport.
The very first Adirondack chair, appropriately named at that time, the Westport chair was invented.

Blue Mountain Lake New York hosts the Adirondack Museum where the history of the interesting and comfortable furniture is displayed for those who are interested.

Thomas Lee a Westport resident loved the outdoors and spending time there with a large family. The home they lived in , called SToney Sides had a vast shortage of lawn furniture and so, on the lawn in front of his home in 1903, Mr Lee created a new contraption of nailed together boards to try out new chairs for the 22 members of his family to sit in and comment on.
With all of the family participating, Lee purportedly created the innovative chair we see today complete with slanted back and arms and wider rests for the forearm.

Mr Lee was acquainted with a carpenter named Harry, so the story goes, who owned a small shop in Westport. He wanted several of the chairs made so that he had enough for the entire family to use while outside talking together. The result was a bit more than he might have asked for and certainly more than he bargained for.

Harry Bunnell concluded that the visitors and full time residents to the town would appreciate the chair that Lee had made and he should make a few more.

He saw the potential for a fairly nice profit from the sales of the chair and without Mr Lee’s knowledge he took a patent on the chair which was in the process of becoming one of the best known furniture pieces in history, surpassing even such goods as famous antique names.

Mr Bunnells chair became more than wildly popular and he experimented on some new versions and variations.
Over time the chair became known for the region of its invention rather than the towns and the name evolved into the Adirondack chair.

They sold well and did make a very nice profit for Mr Bunnell during his lifetime. They sold at the time, for about four dollars a chair. Today those first chairs built fetch a fairly tidy sum of about 1200 to 1500 dollars each for the original builds.

The Adirondack chair will remain well known and well used due to a simple fact of life. If it sits you comfortably and your legs rest better for the slanted seat, and your arms have more room to balance. If the overall comfort of a chair is such that it makes you feel at ease when you sit there, well it might not be Biedermeier or Louis the Fourteenth, but it is going to go down in history, and more, its going to be well used .

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