Halsey Munson Americana
2707 Twin Oaks Court
Decatur, Illinois  62526
Phone:  217-972-4645

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Rare American Courting Mirror

An extremely rare paint-decorated 1790-1810 American courting mirror in a federal form that started about 1785—two panels with the upper reverse painted and the lower a sheet of thin mirror plate. Instead of the reverse painted glass panels on typical European courting glasses, the frame members on this mirror are in the original salmon paint and decorated with flower heads and sprays at all four corners. Reverse on glass upper panel is engagingly simple and all-original. Unlike most courting mirrors, this one retains its original dovetailed box, into which it’s been wood pinned from both sides. A note of interest: The size of courting mirrors imported from northern Europe and China averaged 16½” x 11”. When American cabinetmakers began to produce their own courting mirrors toward the end of the 18th C., they were significantly smaller. This looking glass is 7⅞” X 12½”. An all but unique painted courting mirror, probably made in New York State.