In our recent column (and in at least two earlier columns), we mentioned our Cincinnati windsor chairs. We purchased four of these ages ago at the Cowan's sale of the collection of John Auraden and have happily used them around our dining room ever since.
This pair retains its original finish. The other "pair" has one with original finish and the other has been refinished (this is the one that Nora sits in). I say "finish," because it's so grunged up, I'm not even sure what color they were, but I think dark red.
The firm of Jabez Waters and Silas Barret began manufacturing goods in 1859 using steam to bend wood, and producing all manner of goods. They received a patent on this type of windsor chair, which they call The Oriental, in 1873. Their partnership ended in 1880. This is their mark on the underside of one of the chairs.
They are fairly distinctive chairs--heavy, stout turnings, backward leaning--exactly the type of chair that would be perfectly suited to riverboats. And active toddlers.