Tuesday, July 20, 2010

100 year old Kees family table

The story of the table....

I call it a library table.  It was made over one hundred years ago by my husband's fraternal Grand-father.
Built by Lemmie Hamilton Kees early 1900's
Lemmie was married to Ida Alice Burke

Ray A. Kees remembers using the table to do his homework at age 5 in 1920.
Mrs. Ida was known to always keep a vase of fresh flowers on the table.
The table was passed to Leonard Nichols (Lynn's Uncle) in 1968,
He used the table as an end table in his living room beside his couch and recliner.
The table was passed to Lori (Diefenderfer) and Lynn Kees in 1986.
Used as a computer table and decorative table over the years.

The table had become too warn to show off the beauty of the table.
I have kept it covered with linens for the last eight years.

Time for some tender lovin' care.  I sanded lightly,

It now has some of my DNA in it.  It was over 100 degrees in the garage this day.  Sweat droplets kept dripping on the table.

and restained with provencial colored stain to match the original, light wax finish and Voila!!

I can't  believe how well I matched the stain.  I did not refinish the original knob. And even though I have fun funky knobs, I am sticking with the original for it's beautiful simplicity.

Now I can display it in all its glory, thanks Lemmie for such a wonderful gift of your handiwork and love, I'm sure many more generations will use and love this table.  I never knew you but you are still a part of our home.

I keep an index card with the history of the table in the drawer.

The first thing I put on it were fresh flowers in honor of Mrs. Ida.  Some southern crepe myrtles in a silver mint julep vase.

Lynn had these in a box and said they were Ida's glasses.

You can tell we don't have any little ones at the house anymore, wine glasses and tray on the bottom shelf.  Oops I forgot to close the drawer too.  I always notice things once I post the picture.

No more linens covering this pretty little lady.

Sharing with
Marty at Tabletop Tuesday
Between Naps on the Porch
Toot your horn Tuesday
Heart and Home - Gratitude Wednesday
My Backyard Eden
My Romantic Home


  1. Lori, you did a fantabulous job on that table. It doesn't look refinished, it looks like it was always that way. I love how you have it displayed. I have a chest to refinish and it is very hot in our garage, too. Oh well, maybe I will sweat off some weight at the same time.

  2. Glad you didn't change the knob. This is a family historical piece for sure so the original knob fits. You did an amazing job bringing it back to it's former glory. I love the history behind old pieces. Thanks for sharing. (you're a brave soul for braving the heat index we've had here lately)

  3. What a great job you did restoring this family heirloom to it's original beauty. I love the fact that you left the old knob and took such care with with honoring it's past, and the flowers are such a nice tribute.

  4. Oh, Lori, I LOVED this post. I am a huge history buff and absolutely enjoy dreaming about people who lived in times past.... I have some antiques passed down in my family and I treasure them. Thanks for sharing.

  5. The table came out just gorgeous! I like how you have decorated it, too!

    Lori, I gave you a Sunshine Award on my blog today because I have been enjoying your new blog!

  6. Oh I love the table and the story of it. How wonderful to have it restored and then to create a vignette in such loving memory of it's previous owners. So perfect. I love beautiful old pieces and the stories behind them. Gorgeous. Thanks so much for joining TTT. Hugs, Marty

  7. What a fantastic table, it's beautiful-enjoy!

  8. Lori, that is just beautiful and even more special that it has such a rich history with it. I love pieces like that! You have it displayed beautifully!

  9. Hi Lori,
    That is so special, and you did a wonderful job refinishing it.I love that you put the card with the history of the piece inside the drawer. And the fact that it was made by a relative. How wonderful to have that in your home!
    I always (and I means since I was a little girl) wanted our home to have inherited pieces, but sadly war and borders made that impossible for us. Now as an adult we have my husband's great grandparents' grand piano and it thrills me each time I walk by it!!
    Thanks for linking to Wednesday Gratitude, have a great week!
    Heidi - Heart and Home

  10. Your work paid off and this table looks beautiful, Lori. Keeping the knob in the original finish was a smart choice, and sentimental, too. I like how you are documenting its history for future generations to come.
    :-) Sue

  11. The restoration project you did is super!!!

    For your convenience: My Show n Tell Bargain Link. Hope you can visit.

  12. Oh Lori, be still my heart. If you've read my blog you know I too love, love old wood and the history behind it. Family connection makes it even more special. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Beautiful table and having the family history is worth it's weight in gold. Thanks for sharing!!!


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