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John Cross
Ralph, Cuthbert and Thomas Turnbull: a 19th-century Jamaican cabinet-making family

Journal article

Furniture History
Vol. 39
January 2003
ISSN: 0016 3058

pp. 109-120

Ralph Turnbull, cabinet-maker, was Jamaica's 19th century answer to Thomas Chippendale. Notwithstanding he was one of only two Jamaican cabinet-makers to have advertised by labeling his work, pieces of his have frequently been attributed to other craftsmen.

This article is the first analysis of the work of a Jamaican cabinet-maker and indeed of any aspect of colonial Jamaican furniture, and demonstrate that several members of Turnbull's direct and extended family were also cabinet-makers.

Subsequent scholarly comment to this effect led to the choice of subject of the Furniture History Society Annual Symposium Colonial Comfort - Trading in Furniture with the West Indies (Victoria & Albert Museum, February 2005).

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Ralph, Cuthbert and Thomas Turnbull; a 19th-century Jamaican cabinet-making family

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London Metropolitan University