My client found this piece up in Maine, bought it and brought it to me to refinish. Even rough and in that old black paint it was already insanely charming. We decided to honor the history of the piece and keep it black, as it originally was, but with a new fresh distressed and waxed coat. I sanded, stained, and sealed the top, which is a single pine board, and we added pretty support brackets to the original backsplash. That backsplash is especially enchanting, beautifully constructed with molded edges and the inset panel chamfered on the reverse. Someone took great care in making this piece, for it is indeed handmade, a testament to a craftsman's skill. A workbench need never have been this handsome, but clearly this gentleman took pride in his work, and I enjoyed updating it for a new generation to love.
And then today, just as I was finished and re-applying the original cup brass pulls I realized that one of the drawers has a nice pencil inscription on the underside. It reads-
"J. A. Phelps31 Ledgelawn Ave Bar Harbor Maine.
I haven't been able to find any record of Mr. Phelps yet, but I intend to continue looking. I have included a picture below of 31 Ledgelawn Ave, where this superb workbench was built. I think it would look absolutely splendid in a farmhouse kitchen.