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#916774 - 01/27/07 02:33 PM Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,133
Piano World Offline
Piano World  Offline



Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,133
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
I received an email from Deborah Wythe of the Brooklyn Museum (NY) Digital Collections & Services.

She had seen the section on Piano World where we have some Odd Pianos listed and thought we might like to add this one (thanks Deborah).

Take a nap, play the piano, take a nap, play the piano?


[Linked Image]


Artist: Smith & Co.
Title: Convertible Bed in Form of Upright Piano
Date: ca. 1865
Medium Ebonized wood
Dimensions 55 1/2 x 54 3/4 x 27 in. (141 x 139.1 x 68.6 cm)

Marks On back, stamped: "5734A"; stenciled: "SMITH & c." Two fragmentary paper labels [give directions on how to open and use bed; see files for full text]

Credit Line: Gift of Elinor Merrell

Location: Visible Storage: Case 3, Shelf D (Special Exhibition)

Description: Convertible bed in form of upright piano. Ebonized wood. When closed: Rectangular case with paneled sides; front has paneled lower section with 2 pedals and on each side of case, s-scrolled brackets support sham keyboard. Above keyboard is central music rest of framed, fan-shaped fretwork, flanked by two panels of fretwork of palmettes and scrollwork.

Lid hinges open and front of "piano" hinges at base to open to bed with mesh and wire support for mattress. CONDITION: Finish discolored and "whitish" throughout. Proper right lower support for scroll bracket is loose. Minor cracks and separation in flanking fretwork panels on front.

Curatorial Remarks:
The piano was an important element of the parlor in the United States in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It was a focus of family life and attested to the social aspirations of the owner. The consumer of this convertible piano-bed could, in a way, have his cake and eat it too--enjoying the propriety that a piano conferred on his parlor while gaining a reasonably comfortable sleeping unit for a large family living in limited space. The amusing idea of sleeping in a piano (or a fancy parlor cabinet, in the case of the parlor bedstead) must have been part of the furniture's appeal.


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#916775 - 01/27/07 02:59 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 790
CozyWriter Offline
500 Post Club Member
CozyWriter  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 790
Chapel Hill, NC
All you need now is the Harmonium/toilet and the Pump Organ/cookstove and you'd never have to leave the music room at all!!


Inspiration is the act of pulling a chair up to the writing desk.
Pramberger JP-185 (a 6'1" mahogany-red Grand)+ Glenn Gould-ish piano chair (no cushion)
#916776 - 01/27/07 09:53 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,491
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Bob  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,491
Florida
Now I know what to do when someone offers me a free old upright. A bed for little people!! smile

#916777 - 01/28/07 03:04 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
Cy Shuster, RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Cy Shuster, RPT  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
Albuquerque, NM
It's not a piano/bed: it's a home gym!

Imagine lifting that sucker every morning!

--Cy--


Cy Shuster, RPT
www.shusterpiano.com
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Director, PTG Norfolk 2016 Technical Institute
http://convention.ptg.org
#916778 - 01/28/07 08:04 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,645
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member
U S A P T  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,645
An Indiana University
See next post


Full-Time Music/Entrepreneurship Major: (Why not compose music AND businesses?)
Former Piano Industry Professional
************
Steinway M
Roland Atelier AT90R
************
All Posts are Snarky Unless Otherwise Noted
************
#916779 - 01/28/07 08:08 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,645
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member
U S A P T  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,645
An Indiana University
[Linked Image]

You'd be amazed what some people do for some comfort around a piano warehouse.

See Cy? Lyres aren't just strong, they're versatile too! smile


Full-Time Music/Entrepreneurship Major: (Why not compose music AND businesses?)
Former Piano Industry Professional
************
Steinway M
Roland Atelier AT90R
************
All Posts are Snarky Unless Otherwise Noted
************
#916780 - 01/28/07 10:08 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 10,794
Piano*Dad Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Piano*Dad  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 10,794
Williamsburg, VA
Yes, and if that seat started to burn you might say ....

"lyre, lyre, pants on fire."


PS I just noticed the pun in your sig line ....very good!


PPS. Frank, do you put a mattress in that thing?? Hmmm, maybe you use the strings as .....springs!

#916781 - 01/28/07 11:04 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,133
Piano World Offline
Piano World  Offline



Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,133
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
The museum has a video of the piano bed in action (no pun intended).
I've asked them to see if they could create an mpeg version for us.


- Frank B.
Founder / Owner / Host
www.PianoWorld.com
www.PianoSupplies.com
Find Us On:
Facebook.com/PianoWorldDotCom
ProRecord.info
Twitter.com/PianoWorld
www.youtube.com/PianoWorldDotCom
www.linkedin.com/in/pianoworld
Skype: PianoWorldDotCom
My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190 w/ ProRecord, Yamaha P-80, Estey 1895 Pump Organ, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit), Bilhorn Telescope Organ c 1880
-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!


#916782 - 01/28/07 11:08 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
apple* Offline
apple*  Offline


Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
Kansas
that would be perfect for me.


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, ├Ľun (apple in Estonian)
#916783 - 01/28/07 11:17 PM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 989
Kawaigirl1 Offline
500 Post Club Member
Kawaigirl1  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 989
Toronto
Whoever invented that is a sheer genius laugh

#916784 - 01/29/07 12:31 AM Re: Is It a Piano, or a Bed?  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,580
ChatNoir Offline
1000 Post Club Member
ChatNoir  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,580
Encino, California
Is this an old fashioned alarm clock? Wake up to music while in bed with the piano?
What will they think of next....


Some men are music lovers. Others make love without it.

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