Globe Wernicke Barrister Bookcase

The Timeless Elegance of Globe Wernicke Barrister Bookcases: A Blend of History and Style

The Globe Wernicke Furniture Company is synonymous with quality, innovation, and timeless design, particularly known for its creation of the barrister bookcase. These unique pieces of furniture have not only served the practical needs of legal professionals but have also found a place in the hearts of design enthusiasts around the world. In this blog post, we delve into the rich history of Globe Wernicke and the barrister bookcase, exploring its origins, evolution, and tips on how to style these versatile pieces in your space today.

The Globe Wernicke Furniture Company: A Legacy of Innovation

Founded in the late 19th century, the Globe Wernicke Furniture Company quickly established itself as a leader in office furniture design and manufacturing. The company's name became a hallmark for quality and innovation, thanks to its unique approach to modular design and its commitment to craftsmanship.

The Birth of the Barrister Bookcase

The barrister bookcase, also known as a lawyer's bookcase, was designed to meet the specific needs of legal professionals. Its distinctive feature is the glass-fronted sections that protect books from dust and damage while allowing titles to be displayed. The modular design, allowing for sections to be stacked upon one another, catered to the growing libraries of legal practitioners and book lovers alike.

Lawyer's Library with Globe Wernicke Bookcases

Modular Design

The most distinctive feature of the barrister bookcase is its modular design, consisting of separate shelf units that can be stacked on top of one another. This design allows legal professionals to customize the size of their bookcase based on their current collection of law books and documents, with the flexibility to add more sections as their library grows. The modular aspect is particularly beneficial in the legal field, where the number of reference materials can increase significantly over time.

Globe Wernicke Barrister Stackable Bookcase

Glass-fronted Sections

Each section of a barrister bookcase has a glass front that can be lifted and slid back to access the contents. This design serves multiple purposes for legal professionals:

  • Protection: The glass doors protect valuable and often delicate legal books and documents from dust, light, and environmental damage, which is crucial for preserving these materials over long periods.
  • Confidentiality: The glass allows for the contents to be seen at a glance, making it easier to locate specific items without the need to open each section, thereby maintaining a level of confidentiality in a busy office environment.
  • Accessibility: Unlike traditional bookcases with solid doors or open shelves, the glass doors of a barrister bookcase can be opened without disturbing the arrangement of the books or documents, ensuring that frequently used materials are easily accessible.

Globe Wernicke Glass Front Bookcase

Space Efficiency

The stackable nature of the barrister bookcase makes it highly space-efficient, an important consideration in legal offices where space can be at a premium. The ability to vertically expand the bookcase means that legal professionals can maximize their storage capacity without sacrificing valuable floor space.

Durability and Style

Originally crafted from high-quality woods and designed to withstand the test of time, barrister bookcases are not only functional but also add a touch of elegance and professionalism to legal offices. The classic design of these bookcases lends an air of tradition and gravitas, which is often desired in legal settings.


Though designed with legal professionals in mind, the barrister bookcase's versatility allows it to be used for a variety of purposes beyond just storing books. Its sections can be utilized to display awards, certificates, or even to store and showcase legal artifacts and memorabilia, making it a multifunctional piece of furniture that supports the professional image of a lawyer or law firm.

 Evolution of Design and Functionality

Over the years, the design of the barrister bookcase has evolved, incorporating different materials, finishes, and sizes. However, its core functionality and appeal have remained unchanged. Globe Wernicke bookcases are highly sought after by antique collectors and modern interior designers for their quality and versatility.

The functionality of the barrister bookcase is perfectly aligned with the needs of those in the legal profession. Its design facilitates the organization, protection, and easy access of legal materials, while also offering the flexibility to adapt to a growing collection. The combination of practicality, durability, and timeless style makes the barrister bookcase an enduring favorite among legal professionals

Styling Your Barrister Bookcase: Tips and Ideas

Barrister bookcases are not only functional but also highly decorative. Here are some styling tips to integrate these timeless pieces into your home or office:

  1. Mix and Match: Combine books with decorative items like vases, picture frames, and collectibles to create a personalized display.

  2. Theme Your Shelves: Organize your books and decor by color, theme, or genre to make a visually appealing statement.

  3. Light It Up: Place small lamps or LED strip lights on top of your bookcase to highlight your display and add warmth to the room.

  4. Go Vertical: Use the vertical space by stacking sections to draw the eye upward, making your room appear larger.


The Globe Wernicke Furniture Company has left an indelible mark on the world of furniture design with its innovative barrister bookcase. Whether you are a collector, a legal professional, or someone who appreciates the beauty and functionality of well-designed furniture, a Globe Wernicke barrister bookcase can add a touch of history and elegance to your space.

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