From watching the twins on Antiques Roadshow and Roy Underhill, they often say that early American furniture was made with whatever wood was available. Frequently there was no consideration given to what was used where as they took a practical approach. They are the experts and get the big bucks. But, I don't know that I have ever seen a piece of furniture where the better woods were hidden and the less attractive, or less durable, were in front or on top. I think y'all have summed it up quite well.
"Folks is funny critters."
Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire