Centripetal Spring Armchair

Thomas Warren

Design: 1849
Production: unknown
Manufacturer: American Chair Company,
Troy, New York
Size: 107 x 61 x 71; seat height 48 cms
Material: varnished cast iron, varnished steel,
wood, velvet upholstery

In its day, this armchair offered a unique degree of luxury due to the eight steel strips bent elliptically and connected under the seat by a funnel-shaped centerpiece. This central section supports a vertical bolt around which the seat can rotate, and at the same time is springy in all directions. Warren planned to use springy steel strips in a similar way for seating for railway cars. Only later did he apply his patented idea to chairs for residential use. The “Centripetal Spring Armchair,” several variations of which were presented at the 1851 World’s fair in London, is also one of the first U.S. chairs to feature a cast-iron frame. Designed during a period full of inventive energy and a still unlimited faith in technical feasibility, this armchair is one of the first in a line of versatile pieces of furniture intended to satisfy the needs of its users like a machine. MSC

Thomas Warren

Thomas Warren Centripetal Spring Armchair