Ask the Expert
DEAR MIKE, My wife and I picked up this little gem a few months ago on one of our treasure-hunting expeditions (garage sales) in rural Manitoba. We love the look of the desk, and when we got home we noticed a little plaque on it, reading “T. Eaton & Co. contract department.” The construction of the desk is excellent and it’s in very good shape. We tried doing a little Internet research on it and found nothing. Do you know anything abut this desk? We’re looking for age, where it would have been used and maybe its value.
Thank you, Derek C.
You have a school desk common to every school. There were many different designs to these desks, depending on the manufacturer. Eaton’s was one of many different companies producing commercial furniture. Earlier desks had a hole to fit a bottle of ink for use with fountain pens. By the the late 1950s, this hole was phased out as ballpoint pens were introduced. Your desk appears to be made of maple. I would date your desk in the 1950s. These desks sell for $40 to $60. Mike Huen is an antique dealer and owner of Mike’s General Store in Winnipeg. If you would like to have an item appraised, please include a photo with your question. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, and put “Free Press” in subject line, or write to Mike’s Appraisals, 52 St. Anne’s Rd., Winnipeg, MB, R2M 2Y3.