The distinctive feature of the fan-back side chair is the turned stiles that initiate each side of the back structure of the chair. The only bent piece in the chair is its crest rail. Side chair crest rails contained volutes as well as plain upturned ears. Fan-back side chairs were more popular than comb-back sides because they were less provincial and thus appealed to a more affluent population.
The side chair shown here has a Rhode Island influence. The spindles have pipe stem turnings which make them most distinctive and are well spaced with the turned stiles that frame the chair’s back. The crest rail has upward turned ears. The leg turnings have a more blunt top to the lower bulb that is indicative of the Rhode Island style.