Wooden child's chair and a play cradle for a doll made by an enslaved woodworker named Ben
Original Author: Ben [no last name listed]; photographed by Alan Thompson
Created: 1843
Medium: Wooden doll cradle and child's chair

Furniture for a White Child Made by Ben, an Enslaved Woodworker

This child-sized wooden chair and a play cradle designed to hold a doll were made in 1843 by an enslaved woodworker named Ben. The cradle measured seven-inches wide by fifteen-and-a-half inches long. These pieces were created for a young child named Virginia, the granddaughter of Ben's enslaver, Jordan Edwards of Sussex County. The solidly constructed furniture was made from yellow pine and painted black. It is unknown if the handwrought pieces of furniture were made by Ben as extra work to earn cash from his enslaver.