Shaker chair design and manufacture
Account books and daily records provide evidence that many [Shaker] communities made chairs in the first quarter of the 19th century. *
There was no one "Shaker chair" design as each community of Shakers and even each chair maker brought their personal style to the manufacture of the chairs. Often the most distinguishing characteristic to a Shaker chair is its finial; a particular finial design became associated with a particular Shaker community.
What unified them all was "an outward expression of internal concepts: simplicity, separation from the world, utilitarianism, community and dedication to fine craftsmanship."*
*The Shaker Chair, Charles R. Muller & Timothy D. Rieman
Much has been written about the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearance also known as Shakers for the way their bodies shook and moved during worship. Learn more about this fascinating religious movement that contributed so much to furniture design. http://www.cr.nps.gov/nr/travel/shaker/../index.htm