Know Your Furniture: Hutch
A hutch is an American English word usually used to describe a set of shelves or cabinets placed on top of a lower unit with a counter and either drawers or cabinets. Hutches are often seen in the form of desks, dining room or kitchen furniture. Frequently referred to by furniture aficionados as a hutch dresser.
In the 18th and early 19th century, however, the term hutch or hutch table referred to a tabletop set onto a base in such a way that when the table was not in use, the top pivoted to a vertical position and became the back of a chair or wider settee. This was a very useful form at a time when many homes had a large room used for multiple functions, because it allowed a large dining table to swing up and out of the way.