We were thrilled and honored when the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home Museum bought an antique table from us. The new Johnny Cash Boyhood Home opens in Dyess, Arkansas, this year, and this beautifully carved table will be in the Cash family dining room!
The Mechelen oak table is in the Flemish Renaissance style, dating to 1890. It was hand-crafted in Belgium with heavily-carved details typical of antique Mechelen furniture. Carved lion heads peer out from the four corners of the carved apron, and the table stands on five massive carved legs. We found the table at an antiques market in Belgium and brought it back to the U.S. We’re very glad we did because the table is just like one that the Cash family owned.
Joanne Cash Yates and Tommy Cash, the younger siblings of Johnny Cash, are consultants for the new Johnny Cash Boyhood Home Museum. Both were born and raised in Dyess and they have good memories of the furnishings in their childhood home. They have described the rooms to the Arkansas Heritage Sites Office at Arkansas State University so that all the right furniture can be found.
That’s how Dr. Ruth Hawkins of Arkansas State University came to contact us. She saw that we had an antique table fitting the description of the Cash family dining table, and we shipped it to her in November.
Here it is in the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home dining room in Dyess – Dr. Hawkins said it is perfect in the house! The Cash family moved here in 1935 when President Roosevelt’s administration created the Dyess Colony in a New Deal experiment. The government built 500 colony houses for out-of-work farmers to move in, clear the land, and convert it to agriculture with the aim of eventually paying the government back. The Cash family was given a five-room house and 20 acres of land… and they did indeed pay off their debt!
Young Johnny Cash lived there from age 3 until he went into the Air Force in 1950. If you saw the motion picture “Walk the Line” you’ll have spotted the house in the movie. Arkansas State University now owns the house and they are busy restoring it. The last we heard, it is due to open in April 2014.
I will tell you more background on the Cash family table and the museum itself when the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home opens. Meanwhile, you can track the progress of the house at the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home Facebook page.
A fascinating list of household items already gathered and others still needed is on the Johnny Cash Household Registry site. They are looking for items ranging from 1930’s mops and brooms to a flour barrel with a wooden cover. Who knows? Maybe you’ll have one of those pieces to help the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home out. Then your name will be on a donors’ plaque at the historic house!
You can also see more about the distinctive Mechelen style antique furniture in my earlier blog post.
Aimee owns EuroLuxAntiques.com with her best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Connect with Aimee on Google+ or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.