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Is this a Brunswick Wellington Pool Table?


Is this a Brunswick Wellington Pool Table?

This antique pool table has been in my family for at least 60 years and has finally gotten into my hands.

The story goes that it was originally in the possession of Jack "Legs" Diamond back in the bootlegging days but who really knows about that.

I’m just trying to get an idea of how old it is and the model of the pool table to see if it’s worth getting refurbished. I have been scouring the internet for a while and the closest thing I can find is "The Wellington" but I haven’t seen any Wellington pool tables with the ball return like mine.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advanced.

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Here’s some more pictures of the sides:

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C9020C7F-A020-42B3-8B83-B6914A4D61E8.jpeg

D0BAA631-C23F-4BC7-B6BC-450E21AF2D78.jpeg

And lastly some pictures of the underside of the pool table:

00F1BB8E-F60B-45CB-82C4-B69BE7D55CA8.jpeg

BC1D0FCF-D679-49C3-BDE4-F971E76AA76F.jpeg

A4205B1D-00E0-4974-BEDB-BB9E0378C01A.jpeg

0AB9E7C5-3190-4080-B404-2EBD5C252937.jpeg

259C6B93-2EBE-4E48-9987-B062C10DB0FC.jpeg

Is this a Brunswick Wellington Pool Table?

Replies & Comments

  1. user1580749717billiardsforum on 2/7/2020 4:45:55 AM

    My first thought was that it is an antique Brunswick-Balke-Collender Wellington pool table as well. I have no doubt that at least the main body, frame, rails, and aprons are those of a Brunswick Wellington table.

    Yes, there are subtle differences between your pool table and those you see in the old Brunswick catalogs, but remember - the photographs are typically of the 1st generation of a pool table model (and in some cases, a prototype). They iterated and improved upon models over time and some of those improvements never get photographed for the next catalogs, etc.

    As you probably know, the Brunswick "Wellington" was manufactured from 1906 to 1911. The first iterations (1906) were built under 18 different construction patents awarded from 1892 to 1905. Those made in subsequent years would likely have incorporated various advancements in construction and design that weren't available in the initial release.

    The ball return mechanism and it's ball tray could be an "extra" available on later models. There is also a chance it was purchased after-market and installed/retrofitted. Here's an ad from a 1910 Brunswick-Balke-Collender mail-order catalog showing what they call the "Patent Pool Trough Attachment". The fact they named it "attachment" tells me it was an "extra" available for purchase. It also lists the price, including installation, at $50 (That's about $1280 in today's dollars).

    1910-brunswick-ball-return-attachment.jpg

    The part I'm having trouble with is the leg style. Your pool table has straight legs with no ornamental trim like most of the Brunswick Wellington pool tables seem to have. But, legs were commonly damaged in the pool rooms, etc. and were very often refurbished, rebuilt, or replaced with any other legs available. Here's a Brunswick Wellington billiard table with home-made replacement legs (and some additional artwork):

    wellington-brunswick-homemade-legs.jpg

    The problem is that you can't be sure what, if any, work was done to the pool table before your family came to own it.

    Back in those days folks did all kinds of home-grown repairs to pool tables, like making one table out of several busted pool tables. We call them "Frankenstein Pool Tables". This could be the case with the ball return system as well.

    Here's a "Frankenstein" Brunswick Wellington pool table with the legs and base of a 1890's Brunswick Monarch.

    frankenstein-brunswick-wellington-pool-table.jpg

    Another thing that stands out in the photos of your pool table is a section that looks to have been repaired near the leg. The wood grain is different near the corner. If the ball return system was indeed added after-market, perhaps some damage was done to that area when connecting it to the pocket, or perhaps a section had to be cut out to accommodate the ball return corridor from that particular pocket.

    wood-types-and-stain.jpg

    Also in this photo, we can see how the wood and the stain on the leg doesn't exactly match the rest of the pool table. This further supports the idea that some amount of work was done on this pool table at one time or another.

    It sounds like you've done your research on the pool table so you likely already know most of what I've posted above, but hopefully some or all of it will be helpful to you in some way.

    As to the question of whether or not to refurbish the pool table; it all depends on what your end goal is.

    The Brunswick Wellington was a "simpler" model. Less detail than some others, so even in fully restored condition, they don't command as much as the slightly older and more intricate marquetry-laden pool tables.

    If it were my pool table, and my intention was to keep it, use it, and pass it down further in the years to come, I would most certainly undertake a restoration to bring it back to as close to it's original state as possible.

    Either way, it's a great looking pool table and a great piece of history to have had in your family for all those years!

  2. user1580749717user1580749717 on 2/7/2020 10:19:18 AM

    Wow!

    I seriously couldn’t have asked for a more well thought-out and informative response.

    Thank you so much for your time and effort I really appreciate it.

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Is this a Brunswick Wellington Pool Table?

  • Title: Is this a Brunswick Wellington Pool Table?
  • Author:
  • Published: 2/3/2020 9:08:39 AM
  • Last Updated: 2/7/2020 3:04:53 AM
  • Last Updated By: billiardsforum (Billiards Forum)