These tables are the ones I mean:
The persistent story–I’ve heard it for many years–is that they are by the Finnish designer and architect Alvar Aalto. They’re all over the library. They come in several sizes and you don’t have to look hard to find them:
But . . . could they be knock-offs? I found this 1946 letter in the library papers and to my ear it has the ring of something we would do to save some money:
On the other hand it sounds like the table that they describe as “the table that we inspected in your office” really was an Aalto. I had seen some others over in the School of Architecture a while back and they look quite different from the ones in the library:
So are these real Aaltos and the ones in Fondren sturdier imitations? That was my first theory . . .
Stay tuned for Part 2 tomorrow.
Bonus: There are some tiny ones too.