Chair Lineage

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A few years ago, I bought these chairs for a $1.50 each at a thrift store. They were in perfect condition, look ultra cool and perfectly serve their function in my sunroom. Well, almost perfect. I’m a Libra (sign of the balancing scales) so I’ve never had any problems sitting in these 3-legged chairs. But I’ve had a few guests who’ve had issues with remaining upright, and simply sit in the 4-legged chair options around the same table.

One of those 4-Legs-Preferred friends sent me this:

Several months ago, they found this clip from a 1960s-era Sears catalog on some long-forgotten website. $100 for the entire dining set! And isn’t it lovely in its Danish Modernism? Hard to verify from this tiny photo, but my chairs may even have the original black vinyl seat upholstery.

The chairs still have the original tag on the underside:
Made By The Holabird Company, Bryan, Ohio
I learned that Holabird was founded in Chicago in 1899 and moved to Ohio during WW1. They manufactured “wood novelties and advertising specialties,” and Sears was obviously a major client. I just got such a kick out of learning the provenance of ultra-cheap, ultra-cool chairs after all this time, that I just had to share.

5 thoughts on “Chair Lineage

  1. Working on my family genealogy and one of my relatives listed Holabird (in Bryan, Ohio) as his employer on his WWII draft card. Got curious and googled and it led me here. Neat! 🙂

  2. “Chair Lineage – B.E.L.T. – St. Louis” ended up
    being a remarkable post, cannot wait to go through alot more
    of your articles. Time to waste a bit of time on
    the net lol. Thanks -Maricruz

  3. Wow”
    Thank you very much for doing your research. My wife, Son and I were at a flea market ytesterday and saw the table with four chairs. We actually saw this table and chair set over a year ago. The asking price was $200. Yesterday we saw the same set, still there and marked down to $40. I’m a furniture maker and my wife a jeweler. We have a 1960’s houise and love things all modern. We were atracted to the set a year ago but just couldn’r afford it, now we don’t have the room. Anyways- we couldn’t let it go. We went back the next day and bought it. There are some wear marks but the set is in perfect condition, with the table leaf and has the original black vinyl upholstery. I am going to bring the table and chairs back to life with a little TLC and maybe re-upholster the chairs ina teal. I will post images of the set on my blog.
    I really appreciate you sharing the sears image and your story.
    Thank you
    Steve ( Massachusetts)

  4. I met my husband (now deceased) in 1986. He invited me over to dinner and we had it this unique table (at first I thought had no chairs). To my surprise, there were 4 and with 3 legs only. We later married and moved accross country. He was going to leave the table behind or discard it. Oh no way, I thought, we have to keep this among us. He passed 2007, I am left with the table and 4 chairs with 3 legs on each chair. When I look at the table, I see him and the first time we dined together with my son and his. I am employed by Sears, and my question is “What is the set worth in its original state with vinyl seat covers…………?

  5. I got one of these tables from my great grandmother, and I only have three chairs I need one more. I just love this table because of how unique it is.

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