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That's where all the broken cast iron hinges come from! Stand on the side of the door where you can see the barrel of the hinges.
If the hinges are on the left you have a right hand door (you would pull it open with your right hand), if the hinges are on the right you have a left hand door (you would pull it open with your left hand).
Lastly, compare the design of the furniture to other pieces from the same period.
Glaring differences are suspect, and a signal that this particular piece might not be what it seems.
For the purposes of dating antique hardware we typically rely on the date of an antique hardware catalogue which shows the item or, in some instances, the age of the building it was removed from. It's usually very hard to tell the difference but, in general, brass will have a yellow color and bronze will have a more rose color.
The year it was made can also give a good indication of which is which. From 1870 to 1900 bronze was the metal of choice for the manufacture of artistic hardware. Antique hardware catalogs always reflect what kind of metal was used for a specific piece.
Their reproduction hardware is offered in antique or polished brass.The video above provides a great introduction to dating antique furniture and what areas should be examined.Take note of the shape of the screws used to hold the furniture together.Hunting for antique American furniture is a popular pastime, but how do you really know what you're buying is a true classic, such as a Shaker or Chippendale piece?By examining the shape and condition of the furniture nails and screws as well as the wood and finish, you can get a fairly good idea of when the furniture was built, and possibly by whom.