Neat Pieces
The Plain-Style Furniture of Nineteenth-Century Georgia

Atlanta History Center
With a new foreword by Deanne D. Levison

The return of a classic sourcebook on indigenous southern furniture—now featuring full-color photos


"This edition of Neat Pieces makes the seminal research it presents available to a new generation of scholars and collectors. The new foreword by Deanne Levison provides an informative summary of the research leading up to the original publication and the influence it had on subsequent projects. Most importantly, color photographs are included, better documenting the remarkable surfaces and decorations present on the furniture carefully selected for inclusion in this publication. Just as the original Neat Pieces stimulated interest in and awareness of Georgia’s plain-style furniture, this new volume should provide renewed energy to this important area of study."
—Ashley Callahan, Curator, Henry D. Green Center for the Study of the Decorative Arts, Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia

Neat Pieces is a detailed, extensively illustrated survey of the major forms and makers of the "plain style" of furniture made and used by Georgians in the 1800s. Simply designed, solidly constructed of local woods, and usually unadorned, such pieces were used daily by their owners for storage, sleeping, eating, and more. Today, this furniture is read by historians, folklorists, and other experts for clues into a past way of life. It is also prized by museums, antiques dealers and auction houses, and furniture appraisers, collectors, and makers.

Neat Pieces first appeared as the companion volume to the Atlanta History Center's seminal 1983 exhibit of the same name. The exhibit featured 126 exemplary pieces of furniture, including chairs, tables, huntboards, washstands, and candlestands. Each of them is described and illustrated in this book. Photographs in the original edition of Neat Pieces were black-and-white; here they are color. A new foreword by Deanne Levison looks at related publications and exhibits of the subsequent two decades. The introduction, by William W. Griffin, provides information on furniture forms, nomenclature, and finishes. Also included in the book is a list of more than twelve hundred nineteenth-century Georgia furniture craftsmen, with key details of their lives and work.


  • 126 exemplary pieces of furniture (including chairs, tables, huntboards, washstands, and candlestands)
  • 172 color photographs, 17 black-and-white photographs
  • Information on furniture forms, nomenclature, and finishes
  • Details about more than twelve hundred nineteenth-century Georgia furniture craftsmen
Published in conjunction with the Atlanta History Center and the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center

Page count: 256 pp.
Trim size: 8.5 x 11


List price: $40.95

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Deanne Levison is an appraiser and dealer specializing in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century American antiques and co-owner of the Levison & Cullen Gallery in Atlanta. Ms. Levison helped organize the Atlanta History Center's "Neat Pieces" exhibit in 1983, and worked with Israel Sack beginning in the 1990s.