The Octagon Washington DC Treaty Room Table and Seating | Architects Foundation


The Octagon

Treaty Room -- Aside from its historical significance, the table that sits in the center of the Treaty Room is a neat piece of furniture. It is called a drum or rent table. Its drawers are labeled with ‘receipts’, ‘bills due’, and letters of the alphabet – it was an early filing cabinet with wedge-shaped drawers for landowners to keep track of their tenants. The top of the table originally revolved on its base so its user did not have to get up and walk around the table to file a paper in the appropriate drawer! This table was kept in the Tayloe family and eventually made its way out to San Francisco. In 1906, it was saved from the widespread fires that followed the earthquake thereby being encased in bedding and rolled to safety. The table later came up for auction and the San Francisco chapter of the American Institute of Architects purchased it and brought it back to the Octagon.
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