The Tale of Gibbard

Did you know Bobby Orr is in bed with Gibbard? Well, he sleeps in a Gibbard bed.

The Gibbard Furniture Shops Limited in Napanee, Ontario was Canada’s oldest furniture factory of 173 years until they closed their doors in 2009. Founded by cabinet maker John Gibbard who moved to “The Napanee” in 1835. He leased a mill on the same canal that runs through the Gibbard plant and began manufacturing furniture, coffins and various other items for the local farming community. The Gibbard family kept control of the Gibbard company for four generations. It was purchased by Jack McPherson in 1940, who had worked as a Sales Manager with Gibbard in the 20s.

The company launched its flagship brand of cherry and mahogany furniture in 1964, the Canadian Legacy collection. This brand was sold by retailers from Kingston, Ontario to Madrid, Spain. Gibbard furniture is in use in seventy different Canadian embassies and high commissions worldwide.

Gibbard furniture has become highly collectible since the Napanee factory closed, and with the furniture market taking a nosedive over the past decade its the perfect time to buy. Some Gibbard pieces such as the anniversary tea wagon have dropped in value from $1500 to $450, dressers can be found for $200 or less and night stands for only $100 each. We’ve sold dozens of Gibbard pieces over the years, and there’s currently not much room for its value to go anywhere but up. As these pieces become harder and harder to find in good condition, the value will rise even more.

The Gibbard property has recently been purchased, renovated and renamed to the Gibbard District “honouring Napanee’s historic landmark by transforming it into a waterfront residential space with retail opportunities”.

Rumour has it even Sir John A. MacDonald wrote on a Gibbard desk, so if you come across one you may want to research its provenance.

44 thoughts on “The Tale of Gibbard”

  1. Hi. Do you know where I can find information on Gibbard. I have some chairs that I would like to know how old they are.

  2. I have a tea wagon which I inherited but not sure of the manufacturer. Can you please tell me where on the piece Gibbard would be identified?

  3. Hi I am looking to buy a gibbard Canadian legacy mahogany sofa table or sideboard that is at maximum 60″ wide. Do you know of anyone or where I can find one.

    1. Hi Dawne,

      We’ve had them before but none at the moment. We only have a Gibbard buffet hutch and corner cabinet right now. There are lots of Gibbard pieces on Kijiji but many of them are located in the GTA and priced much higher than we would price them at our store – but maybe a deal will pop up on exactly what you’re looking for!

  4. Hello! I purchased a desk in so so condition in Kingston at a ReStore for $20 with plans to restore. Did they use oak for their desks? This one is a mid-century modern style one with one small drawer in the centre and three largr drawers on the right. The left has straight round thin spindles instead of just two legs or feet. It’s blonde in colour. Any information you can dig up would be appreciated. How bedt to restore it so I do ‘devalue’ it accidentally?

    1. We haven’t sold any Gibbard furniture in oak but I can’t say it was never made! With the current market for furniture how it is, I wouldn’t be worried about lowering its value by restoring a damaged piece. A professionally restored piece would sell in our store for a similar price to high quality originals

      1. The early Gibbard furniture was made of Oak. They are stamped as J Gibbard or J. Gibbard & Son.
        When the McPherson family took over in the 40’s they started in exotic woods.

  5. Just wanted to say that the Gibbard tea wagon my parents received from my grandparents for a wedding gift in 1957, has been in my possession for 29 years and still beautiful. I would never sell it as I treasure it.

  6. Good evening!

    We have many pieces of furniture in mahogany from Gibbard. The hardware(door handle) is broken on one of the bookcases.

    Can you tell me who was the supplier for Gibbard Furniture and/or where can I buy a replacement part?


    1. Good evening Yvon! The handle will largely depend on the age of your bookcase. Some handles were made specifically for Gibbard and others were also used by other manufacturers but I couldn’t tell you which are which. You may be able to find a replacement on eBay, or you could post a picture of the handle you need as a Kijiji wanted ad. Or on Facebook MarketPlace. Another option would be contacting a local metal worker to custom make a new one, or fix the old one if it’s a clean break!

  7. Hi Adam,
    I sent an email a couple of weeks ago (with pictures) asking for advice on pricing a Gibbard bedroom suite for a private sale. I’m not always at the location of the phone number I included so may not have been available if you called. I would be pleased to hear from you by return email at your earliest convenience.

    Regards, Glenn Allen

  8. I have a china cabinet. In the drawer was a piece of paper, with a number and Geo Ass on it. It is a gibbards china cabinet. On the paper it read 1835. I have called gibbards in the past over the china cabinet. The number was the number of it, the name was most likely who made it. I still have the piece. Original wheels on it.

  9. Hello – sounds like you know your Gibbard! I am interested in a table and chairs through a private sale. The chairs look very similar to a gibbard chair I bought 25 years ago but cannot find that Gibbard stamp on the table. The owner tells me it is Gibbard. Ideas on authentication? Thank you!

    1. Hi Kathy,

      Lots of Gibbard sets were only marked on either the chairs or the table. The three common types of markings they used are wood burned stamps, metal plates or paper tags (or a combination). If the table had been marked with a paper or metal label they could have been removed. You may be able to see staple holes from a paper label, or rectangular discoloration if a metal label was removed after many years. We’ve bought and sold some Gibbard pieces that were missing their identification marks, but I’ve yet to see a ‘fake’ Gibbard piece that mimics the quality. In my opinion, it’s pretty safe to say that if it looks like Gibbard it probably is Gibbard.

  10. Do you know if the old Gibbard website is still around or what it was called so I can look it up on the web archive.
    It was kept active for years but I can’t find it now.

      1. I have a blond Gibbard buffet& sideboard plus table and six chairs, buffet& sideboard are stamped in the drawer cannot find marking on table and chairs not sure if they are Gibbard

  11. Hi
    I bought a Gibbard “tea table” (that’s what she called it) on a buy/sell site. It’s a small table that has fold down sides and a small drawer also. It has the Gibbsrd stamp burnt into the drawer. I knew right away when I saw it that it was antique and quality made. I intended to use it as my first project with chalk paint but am now thinking I must leave this as original! What would be the value of this table?

  12. Hi, just purchased a great Gibbard buffet and hutch with table and 6 chairs… would like to know more about it… where can I send you pictures?

  13. Hi there. I just purchased a dining room table at my local thrift store. It turns out its a Gibbard. Im very excited about this amazing find ( i got the table plus 3 leaves and 4 chairs for $100.00). Im wondering where i can get more info about my table. Specifically the age and worth (although i will not be selling it ever)
    Thanks very much 😊

  14. I have a Gibbard dining room suite comprised of a dining room table, a hutch and 6 dining room chairs. The number 138 is stamped on the back of the hutch and underside of the table. I am looking to sell the suite and would like to know the value.

    Thanks and have a great day

  15. Hello. I just purchased a square 2 tiered coffee table that has Gibbard Since 1935 stamped/burned underneath. Unfortunately someone decided to mortar in pennies, covering the whole top. My goal is restore this table back to what it should look like. Wish me luck 🙂

  16. Would it be possible to obtain the finishing technique for mahogany. I remember years ago in Eaton’s seeing a black bedroom set, but when you got close to it you could see the red mahogany quite clearly. We have a Gibbard walnut bedroom set, but I would like to build a set and finish it hopefully the way I remember the mahogany.

  17. Was there ever a time in the early years of Gibbard (approx 1920) that the Gibbard trade mark would not be located on the pieces? Or possibly located in an obscure area? I have a dining suite from 1920 and the lady I bought it from thought it may be a Gibbard. There is a very old paper under the table top however all that is visible is the year it was made 1920.

    Thanks, Susan

    1. I haven’t seen any unmarked Gibbard sets, they’ve always been marked on either the table or chairs – sometimes both but not always. Though many sets are marked with plaques rather than the logo burned into the wood, and those plaques could have been removed. If it’s in the style of Gibbard and period 1920, it’s likely Gibbard.

  18. hi there look under the chair, mine have the gibbard logo ect. burnt into the wood with a made in canada date 1837… Good luck Shar

  19. Hi there, we are in the process of downsizing and have 2 Gibbard Curio Cabinets, an adjustable dining table with 8 dining chairs, and a buffet/sideboard. All are made out of Mahogany from Honduras and all have the official Gibbard stamp. I keep reading that the furniture is highly valued but would you have any suggestions as to where we should be trying to sell them at. As I’ve had zero luck so far.

    1. We sell ours both at our store and on Facebook MarketPlace, though lately Gibbard has been quite difficult to get high values for. For example, we’ve sold a few small Gibbard tables over the past year for less than $50 a piece – and they still took a while to sell at that price. Maybe contacting one of your local antique stores would be a good option as well.

  20. hi can you find out about The SALERNO year made 1960 i need to know the value of this table 4 chairs buffet and hutch and the2 drawer server . fredlenten.this is the best style they ever made it does not date .

  21. I have a coffee table with a matching end tables that I would like to sell! Anyway I could get a reasonable quote?

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