Museum and Library Closures

The New-York Historical Society will be closed on September 23, and select spaces will be closed September 24. For details, please visit our calendar.

Tammany Bank

Is owned by NYHS: 
Yes
Tammany Bank
Title
Tammany Bank
Date 
ca. 1875
Medium 
Iron, paint
Dimensions 
Overall: 5 3/4 x 4 3/8 x 3 in. ( 14.6 x 11.1 x 7.6 cm )
Description 
Cast iron mechanical bank in the form of man seated in chair with low arms and high bank; chair painted green with brown trim, with pierced decoration; man dressed in brown suit with yellow waistcoat, posed with one hand raised (with separate notch of metal to hold coin); cast inscription with fan motif on each side of chair; when coin is placed in figure's hand, the weight of the coin causes the hand to lower and deposit the coin into the pocket of the figure.
Credit Line 
Purchased from Elie Nadelman
Object Number 
1937.1237
Marks 
Inscription: cast on each side of chair: "TAMMANY BANK [with fan motif at center]"Mark: cast on back of chair, top: "PATD DEC 23 1873"Nadelman collection sticker: "450/Am"
Gallery Label 
This mechanical bank is said to represent Boss Tweed, the notorious Tammany Hall leader, pocketing illicit money. The Tammany Bank is based on Patent No. 145,734, issued to John Hall on Dec. 23, 1873.
Provenance 
The Folk Art Collection of Elie Nadelman
Bibliography 
Denker, Ellen Paul. "Collector' legacies." The Magazine Antiques 167 (2005): 176-180.
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group