This is the first time I have seen this line from designer Merton Gershun for American of Martinsville in person. And it has, as they say, blown me away! Not much is known about Merton Gershun but the glory of his many marvelous designs for American of Martinsville. This line is called Urban Suburban and was produced in the 1960s, but you would never know its age by its timeless design. It is the epitome of a perfect piece of furniture to me. I adore its clean straight lines and symmetry and the combination of light maple and dark walnut woods. The dark walnut and aluminum tailored handles are truly pieces of jewelry for the nine drawers which are recessed inside the cabinet top and sides. This sleek light maple chest sets on gorgeous sinuous legs and stretchers of dark walnut. Simply spectacular! Plus, it has storage galore!!
Not much was available online about Merton Gershun but his designs for American of Martinsville are incredible and speak to his talent as a furniture designer. He was born August 7, 1909 and passed on January 3, 1989. It seems he spent the entirety of his career designing for American of Martinsville. Although not as currently well-known as other mid-century modern designers, I feel his time is coming.
American of Martinsville was established in 1906 in Martinsville, Virginia by tobacco manufacturers, Ancil Witten and Charles Keesee. Early on they produced only bedroom furniture. In the 1920s they expanded their production to include dining room furniture and by the end of the 1950s was vast in their offerings in purpose and style. With the expansion of travel and roadside motels, they began offering a mass-produced line for the many motels popping up across the country and continued this through the end of the 20th century. In 2000 they were acquired by La-Z-Boy Incorporated and today specialize in furniture for the hotel and healthcare industries.
This could easily be used as a credenza in an entry, a dresser in a bedroom, a console in a living room, or a buffet in a dining room. Just choose where you need it and make it yours!