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President Hayes Begins the Tradition of the White House Easter Egg Roll

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Mon, Apr 15, 2019 @ 10:15 AM

Easter egg roll White House

THE ANNUAL WHITE HOUSE EASTER EGG ROLL

To anyone alive today, the annual White House Easter egg roll has been happening “forever.” That’s because none of us can remember back as far as 1878, when the White House South Lawn first hosted the event, at the invitation of then-President Rutherford B. Hayes. After all, that was 141 years ago.

The Easter egg roll itself is even older, having gotten its start at the Capitol. The Monday after Easter, kids and their families from around Washington, DC would gather and the children would roll decorated hard-boiled eggs down the grassy hill using spoons to guide their eggs in the race. The event was hard on the grass, however, so some evidently fun-averse legislators pushed through the Turf Protection Act in 1876. It was signed into law by President Ulysses Grant.

grant official white house china fish plate

Hayes elk plate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RARE ULYSSESS S. GRANT OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA FISH PLATE. ALSO, AN EXTRAORDINARILY RARE 1879 RUTHERFORD B. HAYES OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA DINNER PLATE - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION.

SEE MORE WHITE HOUSE CHINA HERE

And that was the end of the official Washington, DC Easter egg roll. Temporarily. Accounts vary about exactly what transpired next, but two years later, either a group of children descended on the White House asking to hold the egg roll there, or President Hayes invited the event to the White House. Regardless, the President was all in, as they say, the gates were opened, and the Easter egg roll became an official White House event.

Today, it is the largest annual public event held at the White House, with some 37,000 people attending last year. Because of its popularity, attendance is now limited -- determined by an online lottery -- but tickets remain free for participants and families.

Over the years, various Presidents and First Ladies have added their own touches to the Easter egg roll. Grover Cleveland started a tradition of inviting some young egg rollers into the East Room for a personal meeting. Benjamin Harrison added the United States Marine Band, and in more recent years numerous well-known artists have been invited to perform. First Lady Pat Nixon introduced the Easter Bunny himself, when one of her staffers donned a bunny suit to shake hands with those entering the gates.

The event has gone dark on some occasions over the years, notably during World Wars I and II. In 1918, the event was cancelled because the District of Columbia food administrator determined it was an unacceptable waste of valuable eggs during a time of food rationing. And the event was off the schedule from 1943 through 1952, due to war itself, post-war conservation efforts, and then construction on the Executive Mansion itself. Accordingly, this two-year White House construction put the South Lawn off limits.

easter egg roll

WHITE HOUSE EASTER EGG ROLL IN 1898 SHOWS BLACK AND WHITE CHILDREN ENJOYING THE EVENT TOGETHER - IT IS LIKELY THAT THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN LAD COULD BE A SON OF ONE OF THE WHITE HOUSE PERMANENT STAFFERS

According to Smithsonian Magazine, White House archives include an 1898 photo showing black and white children participating together in the event. The article quotes Clarence Lusane, author of The Black History of the White House: “Permitting black children to integrate with white children on the White House premises one day a year was acceptable, even though such mingling was illegal in many places throughout the South at the time, including libraries and schools.” Also, it is likely that the African-American lad could be a son of one of the White House permanent staffers.

At some point, though, integrated White House egg rolls went by the wayside -- until 1953, when Mamie Eisenhower noticed black children watching the event from outside the fence. The next year, she made sure black children were welcomed to participate again.

Reagan signed white house easter egg roll

RONALD & NANCY REAGAN HAD THEIR FAMOUS FRIENDS SIGN WOODEN EASTER EGGS DURING THEIR TIME IN THE WHITE HOUSE, AND WOODEN EGGS HAVE BEEN THE NORM EVER SINCE

First Ladies Betty Ford and Roslyn Carter changed things up as well, handing out plastic eggs that contained personal notes from each of them. Continuing that theme, President and Nancy Reagan handed out wooden eggs instead, each inscribed as a memento of the event and signed by a famous person. Similar wooden eggs are still given to all children 12 and younger as they leave the event. Who knows? Receiving that keepsake wooden egg may inspire some of those youngsters to become collectors of presidential memorabilia, perhaps even Official White House China.

RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX|JEFFERSON CHINA|PRESIDENTIAL CHINA|WHITE HOUSE CHINA|

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - HISTORIAN & COLLECTOR

Distinguished historian and collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has acquired a remarkable number of scarce and rare pieces of Official White House China. Mr. Amyx’s passion for American historical artifacts has been his sole focus for nearly 40 years. Mr. Amyx's collection is the largest privately-owned collection of extremely high-quality, as well as the rarest, Official White House China and Presidential China in the world. If you would like to engage in a discussion with Mr. Amyx about White House China, please contact him through the button below.

BUY, SHARE, OR TRADE WHITE HOUSE CHINA AND PRESIDENTIAL CHINA

 

Tags: White House China, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes

Two Stunning Presidential Pieces Could Be Yours

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Tue, Mar 05, 2019 @ 10:47 AM

President Grant & President Clinton official white house china for sale

STUNNING OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA PLATES FOR SALE FROM THE ULYSSES S. GRANT AND BILL CLINTON COLLECTIONS - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

Sometimes Raleigh DeGeer Amyx winds up with duplicate pieces in his Official White House China collection. And, when that happens, sometimes he is willing to part with one of those pieces. That is now the case with two elegant plates, which Mr. Amyx is offering for sale.

Both plates are historic, of course, because they were owned and used by American Presidents. Beyond that fact, they couldn’t be more different. Each plate is uniquely beautiful, with its own story to tell. One is very old, the other much more recent. Let’s learn more about them.

grant official white house china plate

TRULY UNIQUE 1879 ULYSSES S. GRANT OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA FISH PLATE FOR SALE

GRANT FISH PLATE
There is no question that the colorful plates Ulysses and Julia Grant purchased on a European trip are intended for fish. The set included just 24 plates measuring 8 ½” in diameter, plus two serving plates. They are Chinese porcelain, which was immensely popular at the time – 1879 – still considered to be the world’s finest porcelain. Each piece is exquisitely hand painted, with a band of flowers and butterflies framed with thin gold bands and, in the center with a stunning large fish.

The Grant Fish Plate is available for $5,000.

PG. 109 CLINTON 10.5 IN. PLATE 22073

ELEGANT BILL CLINTON OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA DINNER PLATE FOR SALE

CLINTON DINNER PLATE
The porcelain commissioned by Bill and Hillary Clinton has extra presidential cachet because this china commemorates the 200th anniversary of the White House. The Clintons barely got to use the service, since it did not arrive until late in 2000, at the very end of Bill Clinton’s second term. Nonetheless, Hillary Clinton played a key role in designing this unusual collection. Because the china honors the White House itself, it seemed only fitting to her that the pieces among the collection depict the Executive Mansion.

All the pieces have the same general look – white background with a wide yellow band outlined on the inside and around the rim with narrower, patterned gold bands. However, each type of plate has a different pattern in white on the yellow band – each pattern reflecting an architectural element within one of the mansion’s formal rooms.

The Clinton dinner plate, which is for sale, has a unique ornate design. The dinner, dessert, and service plates in this collection are further distinguished in that they bear a portrait of the north front of the White House at 12 o’clock on the yellow band. White House China typically carries a version of the Presidential Seal in this position. The dinner plate also has added value compared to other Clinton White House China, because of its unique decoration and historic significance, and because the plate is larger in diameter (10.5 inches) than dinner plates in most other Presidential china collections.

The Clinton Dinner Plate is available for $5,000.

Note: All Clinton pieces that bear the 12 o'clock White House symbol are always priced more expensively than the remaining Clinton pieces that do not have such a symbol at the 12 o'clock position. Thus, the three highest priced Clinton pieces are the Service Plate, Dinner Plate, and Dessert Plate.

SEE MORE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA HERE

RDA blog image

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - IMPOSING HISTORIAN & COLLECTOR

Distinguished historian and collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has acquired a remarkable number of scarce or rare pieces of Official White House China. Mr. Amyx’s passion for American historical artifacts has been his sole focus for nearly 40 years. Mr. Amyx's collection is the largest privately-owned collection of extremely high-quality, as well as the rarest, Official White House China and Presidential China in the world. If you would like to engage in a discussion with Mr. Amyx about White House China, please contact him through the button below.

BUY, SHARE, OR TRADE WHITE HOUSE CHINA AND PRESIDENTIAL CHINA

 

Tags: White House China, Ulysses S. Grant, Bill Clinton

Top 9 Rarest White House China Pieces

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Thu, May 25, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

Presidential dinnerware since the time of George Washington reflects the taste and culture of its day. Shapes, sizes, and decoration of the pieces vary considerably – dramatically in some cases – and every casual viewer and collector has their aesthetic favorites. But when it comes to identifying the rarest White House China, beauty has no bearing. Rarity is strictly a matter of numbers. The fewer pieces still in existence, the rarer they are.

Several Official White House China patterns were so popular with later Presidents, they were reordered instead of being replaced with a new design. The Abraham Lincoln Official White House China is a prominent example. Because so many pieces with this pattern were produced, there are more available to be collected, even today. Comparatively speaking, they are not rare, but Lincoln is Lincoln, thus in high demand.

We asked world renowned White House China collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx which Presidential China collections are most rare. Here's how he ranked them:

ulysses s grant white house china service dinner plate

LOVELY 1870 STATE DINNER PLATE FROM THE ULYSSES S. GRANT OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - HAVILAND AND COMPANY - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
SEE MORE WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTIONS HERE

#9. Ulysses Grant

This 1879 Official White House China order consisted of more pieces – 587 – but no 1879 pieces were ever re-ordered, that bear a distinctive verso marking. There is a special marking on the 1879 order that does not appear on any of the following china order pieces, by any other subsequent Presidents.

rutherford hayes white house chine service dinner plate

UNIQUE HAND-PAINTED DESSERT PLATE FROM THE 1879 RUTHERFORD B. HAYES OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - DESIGNED BY THEODORE RUSSELL DAVIS - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#8. Rutherford Hayes

President Hayes’ original 562-piece White House China service is marked “1879” on the back. However, Haviland & Co. lost so much money producing this stunning china that they reissued it repeatedly for public sale, minus the 1879 date. Even a subsequent Presidential order to replenish White House supplies arrived without the 1879 mark. For this reason, pieces remaining from the original, dated order are deemed to be about five times as valuable as matching, undated 1879 pieces.

james k polk official white house china service dinner plate

PRISTINE EXAMPLE OF A DESSERT PLATE FROM THE 1846 JAMES K. POLK OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY EDOUARD D. HONORE - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#7. James K. Polk

The 1846 James K. Polk White House China was never re-ordered and bears no specfic markings that help identify it as Official White House China.

theodore teddy roosevelt white house china service dinner plate

TIMELESS STATE FISH PLATE FROM THE 1903 THEODORE ROOSEVELT OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY WEDGWOOD - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#6. Theodore Roosevelt

There were just 120 pieces in Theodore Roosevelt’s original White House China order, and this pattern was never re-ordered. Not only are there no verso markings to indicate the pieces were Official White House China, the seal on the front rim is the seal of the United States, not the Presidential seal. This makes it even more likely subsequent owners would not have realized what they had. Mr. Amyx says, “pieces rarely appear on the market, perhaps every 5 or 10 years.” One 9” fish plate from the Theodore Roosevelt Official White House China collection is part of the Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection.

john quincy adams white house china service dinner plate

EXTRAORDINALRILY RARE SERVING PIECE FROM THE JOHN QUINCY ADAMS OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#5. John Quincy Adams

None of the John Quincy Adams White House China was ever re-ordered. Most of the original order was lost or broken. During the 1800s, most Presidential china orders were not marked as such, so they were often inherited by individuals who had no idea of their true provenance or value.

franklin pierce white house china service dinner plate

ELEGANT PLATE FROM THE 1853 FRANKLIN PIERCE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#4. Franklin Pierce

There were only 287 pieces in Franklin Pierce’s 1853 White House China order, and they had no helpful verso markings. The pattern was never re-ordered. Mr. Amyx owns one pristine piece from of Pierce White House China, and says “he has seen only one other piece offered for sale in the last 30 years.”

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EXTREMELY RARE LOZENGES SERVICE DISHES FROM THE 1806 JAMES MADISON OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY NAST'S FACTORY PARIS - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#3. James Madison

Prior to becoming President, James and Dolley Madison ordered a set of china that consisted of about 300 pieces. Following the War of 1812, the Madisons brought to The White House the china that they had used as Secretary of State. They used this service for dinners with foreign dignitaries, so it became Official White House China. Today, only 30 pieces remain, thanks to the fact that the British burned down the executive mansion and much of its contents during the Madison administration. Thirty pieces are accounted for – among them, 8 are in the White House collection, 4 are housed at the historic Madison home in Montpelier, and 5 Madison pieces are in the Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection.

MONROE-DESSERT-PLATE-POST-RESTORATION-2014.jpg

PRISTINE DESSERT PLATE FROM THE 1820 JAMES MONROE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY DAGOYT AND HONORE - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#2. James Monroe

Similar to the John Quincy Adams White House China, no President after James Monroe ordered this same pattern, so only the pieces in Monroe’s original order ever existed. James Monroe White House China is sought after in a major way.

WASHINGTON-CHINA-PHOTO-1-POST-RESTORATION-4-27-14.jpg

BEAUTIFUL CHINESE EXPORT PORCELAIN PLATE FROM THE 1786 GEORGE WASHINGTON PRESIDENTIAL CHINA - CONSIDERED THE "HOLY GRAIL" OF WHITE HOUSE CHINA - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#1. George Washington

Very few pieces of our first President’s china still exist today. The dinnerware Washington used for official state occasions while President was his own personal china, used by him both before and after his Presidential service. Although there was no White House during the Washington Administration, this extraordinarily rare  porcelain is still considered to be Official White House China. After the passing of both George and Martha Washington, the remaining china was moved several times – and not always gently. Not much survived. Specifically, a pristine George Washington White House China dinner plate has a value exceeding $80,000.

RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX|JEFFERSON CHINA|PRESIDENTIAL CHINA|WHITE HOUSE CHINA|

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX HISTORIAN AND COLLECTOR

World renowned collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has acquired a remarkable number of scarce or rare pieces of official White House China. Mr. Amyx’s passion for American historical artifacts has been his sole focus for more than 35 years. Mr. Amyx's collection is the largest privately-owned collection of extremely high-quality, as well as the rarest, Official White House China and Presidential China in the world. If you would like to engage in a discussion with Mr. Amyx about White House China, please contact him through the button below.

BUY, SHARE, OR TRADE WHITE HOUSE CHINA AND PRESIDENTIAL CHINA

 

Tags: White House China, Theodore Roosevelt, Ulysses S. Grant, James K. Polk, Marilyn Monroe, George Washington, James Monroe, James Madison, John Quincy Adams, Rutherford B. Hayes, Franklin Pierce

The 9 Most Beautiful Examples of White House China

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Thu, Apr 06, 2017 @ 10:30 AM

Everyone knows that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But picking favorites among the many collections of stunning Official White House China is no mere beauty contest. For renowned collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx, it’s about the art – and the fact that the magnificence of each service also reflects the context of its time.

“In a portrait gallery,” he explains, “you walk into a room filled with masterpieces yet you’re drawn to certain one(s) that move you, like a song that makes you feel something.” Asked to name his White House china favorites, he chose nine, noting it was “easy” to identify the first four, but hard to decide beyond that because each collection is outstanding in its own way. This is the countdown of his nine favorite White House China examples.

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STUNNING 1951 SERVICE PLATE FROM THE HARRY S. TRUMAN OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY LENOX - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
SEE MORE WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTIONS HERE

#9. Harry S. Truman

Similar in many ways to Woodrow Wilson’s White House China, the Truman collection exudes overall elegance. The richly-patterned green, gold, deep ivory and white provide an aesthetically appropriate harmony for official state dinners. This service is historically important because it depicts the federal eagle as “reversed” by Truman’s Executive Order in 1945, showing the eagle facing the olive branch of peace rather than the arrows of war.

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PRISTINE EXAMPLE OF A DESSERT PLATE FROM THE 1846 JAMES K. POLK OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY EDOUARD D. HONORE - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#8. James Polk

Though more subtle than the surprising shapes of the Hayes china, the ornately scalloped plates are themselves works of art, reflecting a different artist’s imagination. They create a visual frame for the extensive gilded designs as well as beautifully hand-painted flowers on the dessert plates – 36 flowers to denote the 36 states in the Union. With this china, a new presidential shield is depicted for the first time in red, white and blue.

hayes_w.h_china_full_oriole_shot_rutherford-hayes-dessert-plate-1.jpg

ELEGANT HAND-PAINTED DESSERT PLATE FROM 1879 RUTHEFORD B. HAYES OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY HAVILAND & CO - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#7. Rutherford B. Hayes

There is nothing subtle about the unusual plate shapes in this White House China collection. “You either like it, or you don’t,” says Mr. Amyx. Each plate seems to have been designed to frame its colorfully detailed, hand-painted wildlife. The non-traditional aspects of this china extend to the always-present presidential emblem – it is equally colorful, but appears only on the verso. Pieces from the original 1879 order are most collectible. Although the “cypher” on the verso was supposedly rendered in red, white and blue, it appears to be gold, turquoise and orange. ”

benjamin-harrison-china-breakfast-plate-1.jpg

GORGEOUS BREAKFAST PLATE FROM THE 1891 BENJAMIN HARRISON OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY TRESSEMANES AND VOGT - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#6. Benjamin Harrison

First Lady Caroline Scott Harrison was a very talented artist, and it is her, in part, own artwork that adorns the border of this striking White House China. In fact, it is so pretty, subsequent presidents chose to reorder the same pattern rather than make any changes. That makes some Harrison china easier for collectors to locate. However, the pièce de résistance among this collection is the rarer and more valuable morning breakfast plate that features a double border.

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LOVELY STATE DINNER PLATE FROM THE 1869 ULYSSES S. GRANT OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY HAVILAND & COMPANY - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#5. Ulysses S. Grant

With this extraordinary china, the subtly scalloped edges of the plates offer a distinctive design element. But the large, beautifully detailed flowers are the main presence – 24 in all, allowing each place setting at smaller dinner gatherings to be different. This dinnerware also introduces a new presidential emblem, again chosen by the artist and approved by President and/or Mrs. Grant.

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BEAUTIFUL SERVICE PLATE FROM THE 1968 LYNDON B. JOHNSON OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY CASTLETON CHINA - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#4. Lyndon Baines Johnson

Lady Bird Johnson used her influence as First Lady to promote beautification of America’s roadsides through planting wildflowers. The state china she helped design reflects that same theme – not only pretty but perhaps a floral political statement as well. "Photos simply do not do this china justice," notes Mr. Amyx. He admits he especially loves the eagle, which borrows from Monroe and Lincoln depictions.

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IMPECCABLE STATE DINNER SERVICE PLATE FROM THE 1981 RONALD REAGAN OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY LENOX - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#3. Ronald Reagan

This china’s extraordinary creativity and beauty show in the bold scarlet border (Nancy Reagan’s favorite color), bounded by gold cross-hatching on the service and dessert plates. "The color and design are both striking, like a lady in a perfect red dress," yet they take their inspiration from artistic elements in early White House China patterns.

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CLASSIC STATE DINNER PLATE FROM THE 1861 ABRAHAM LINCOLN OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION - MANUFACTURED BY HAVILAND & COMPANY - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#2. Abraham Lincoln

Presidents are America’s version of royalty, so this china also features a variation of Royal Purple – in this case a rich, warm tone called Solferino, chosen personally by Mary Todd Lincoln. This stunning china carries forward the Monroe eagle to represent the president, but now the eagle holds arrows of war and an olive branch of peace and is accompanied by a banner that reads “E Pluribus Unum.”

MONROE-DESSERT-PLATE-POST-RESTORATION-2014.jpg

PRISTINE DESSERT PLATE FROM THE JAMES MONROE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION CIRCA 1820 - MANUFACTURED BY DAGOYT AND HONORE - BOTH PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

#1. James Monroe

This was the first time an American president had a Congressionally-approved budget to buy china for formal White House occasions. Previous presidents had brought their personal dinnerware with them, so there was no precedent regarding what constituted “officially appropriate” china. "What should the presidential emblem look like? The Monroe service, like several other early designs, is presidential china as seen through the eyes of the artist." Every detail imagined and hand-painted, from the unusual marbled purplish-blue border to the bald eagle with widespread wings.

RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX|JEFFERSON CHINA|PRESIDENTIAL CHINA|WHITE HOUSE CHINA|

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX HISTORIAN AND COLLECTOR

World renowned collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has acquired a remarkable number of scarce or rare pieces of official White House China. Mr. Amyx’s passion for American historical artifacts has been his sole focus for more than 35 years. Mr. Amyx's collection is the largest privately-owned collection of extremely high-quality, as well as the rarest, Official White House China and Presidential China in the world. If you would like to engage in a discussion with Mr. Amyx about White House China, please contact him through the button below.

BUY, SHARE, OR TRADE WHITE HOUSE CHINA AND PRESIDENTIAL CHINA

 

Tags: Lyndon B. Johnson, White House China, Ulysses S. Grant, James K. Polk, Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln, Harry S. Truman, James Monroe, Rutherford B. Hayes, Benjamin Harrison

Ulysses S Grant: Cigars, Cocaine and Cancer

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Tue, Jan 12, 2016 @ 10:00 AM

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ULYSSES S. GRANT (1822-1885)
OUR 18TH PRESIDENT (1869-1877)

With former President Jimmy Carter’s dramatic victory over cancer in the news, it makes one wonder how many other presidents have had a brush with cancer. As it turns out, several of them have experienced this disease first-hand, either while in office or afterward. But only Ulysses S. Grant actually perished from the disease.

President Grant died on July 23, 1885, from throat cancer. Grant was a notorious, lifelong cigar-lover. He not only smoked them but chewed them – as many as a dozen a day by his own admission. Historians report that once the public discovered his love of cigars, he received more than 20,000 as gifts. Grant was also a heavy drinker at times during his life.

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GENERAL GRANT'S HANDSOME MAHOGANY CIGAR CASE WITH A BRASS SHIELD MONOGRAMMED "USG-1862". THIS PROFOUND RELIC WAS PRESENTED TO RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX ABOUT A QUARTER-CENTURY AGO.

Grant’s wife Julia remembers her husband was eating peaches – a favorite of his – when he first noticed a problem with his throat. “He proceeded to eat the dainty morsel; then he started up as if in great pain and exclaimed, ‘Oh my. I think something has stung me from that peach.’” Unfortunately, he ignored that warning.

GRANT-W.H._CHINA_FULL_FRT._whc_grant_dessert.jpg

THE GRANT WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION FEATURES 24 DIFFERENT FLOWERS REPRESENTING 24 DIFFERENT STATES. THIS ELEGANT 9.25" STATE DINNER PLATE FROM THE COLLECTION OF ULYSSES AND JULIA GRANT IS STILL IN PRISTINE CONDITION AND PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION.

The victim of a shady investment scheme, Grant found himself broke later in life. Knowing he was dying of throat cancer, he accepted a lucrative offer from his longtime admirer Mark Twain to write and publish his memoirs. Despite Grant’s terrible pain and failing health, they worked together for five weeks in a cottage on the grounds of the Mount McGregor Correctional Facility in upstate New York. The house is now the Grant Cottage Historic Site, where several of his personal effects are on display.

Grant_Historical_Cottage.jpg

GRANT COTTAGE STATE HISTORICAL SITE ON THE SLOPE OF MOUNT McGREGOR IN WILTON, NEW YORK. THIS COZY COTTAGE IS WHERE GRANT COMPLETED HIS MEMOIRS BEFORE PASSING AWAY IN HIS BED ON JUNE 16, 1885. ORIGINAL FURNISHINGS, DECOR AND PERSONAL ITEMS ARE ON DISPLAY IN THE COTTAGE.

Perhaps the most interesting item is the glass of cocaine hydro chlorate solution, which Grant called his “cocaine water.” Swallowing small amounts of the liquid was the only treatment available to him. By the time Grant sought medical help for the pain and swelling in his mouth, the cancer was untreatable. But the cocaine solution helped alleviate the pain in his throat. Over time, the cocaine in the solution has settled to the bottom of the glass. Tim Welch, director of the Grant Historic Site, says, “Every year the New York State Department of Parks and Recreation measures this and makes sure that none of it is gone.”

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THIS CHINESE PORCELAIN FISH PLATE IS ONE OF ONLY 24 ORDERED FOR THE GRANT SERVICE, WHICH THEY SELECTED WHILE TOURING EUROPE. THIS UNIQUE PATTERNED PLATE IS IN REMARKABLE CONDITION AND PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION.

Ulysses Grant passed away just a few days after his memoirs were completed. His family reportedly received more than $450,000 from the sale of 300,000-plus copies of his memoirs, an inordinately huge sum of money for this period of history.

RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX|JEFFERSON CHINA|PRESIDENTIAL CHINA|WHITE HOUSE CHINA|

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - HISTORIAN AND COLLECTOR 

World renowned collector Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has acquired a remarkable number of scarce or rare pieces of official White House China. Mr. Amyx’s passion for American historical artifacts has been his sole focus for more than 35 years. Mr. Amyx's collection is the largest privately-owned collection of extremely high-quality, as well as the rarest, Official White House China and Presidential China in the world. If you would like to engage in a discussion with Mr. Amyx about White House China, please contact him through the button below.

SELECT PRESIDENTIAL ITEMS TO BE OFFERED

 

Tags: Ulysses S. Grant

Scandals of Ulysses S. Grant - GENERAL & PRESIDENT

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Thu, Apr 10, 2014 @ 08:45 AM

U.S. GRANT

18TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES - ULYSSES S. GRANT - LACKED THE SKILL NECESSARY TO OPERATE AT AN ELITE LEVEL IN THE LANDSCAPE OF POLITICS

Ulysses S. Grant had a very successful military career before he was elected as the 18th President of the United States. Unfortunately, his military leadership experience did not prepare him for the challenges he would face in politics. Although Grant’s honesty and integrity was never doubted, several of the people he chose proved to be dishonest and corrupt.

Black Friday

September 24, 1869 – which became known as Black Friday – was the first devastating scandal that tarnished the name of President Grant. The foiled plot was intended to manipulate the price of gold for profit. Conspirators, Fisk and Gould, enlisted the help of Grant’s brother-in-law Abel Corbin to gain access to the President and convince him to halt the sale of Treasury gold.

U.S. GRANT WHITE HOUSE CHINA|GRANT PRESIDENTIAL CHINA|
U.S. GRANT's OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA - OWNED & USED BY HIM - THIS PRESIDENTIAL CHINA IS A PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

After consulting a trusted businessman, President Grant realized that restricting the sale of Treasury gold was harming public confidence. Without realizing the domino effect it would have, he ordered the immediate sale of government gold valued at $4 million, causing the U.S. gold market to crash. Conspirators Fisk and Gould were never held accountable for the resulting financial ruin of many and the long-lasting effect on the United States economy.

New York Custom House Ring

Another unfortunate development that happened during Grant’s presidency involved the port at New York harbor. The U.S. Treasury Secretary was informed that the New York Custom House was bringing more revenue than any other U.S. port.

A congressional investigation of the situation revealed that two corrupt collectors, both appointed by President Grant, had been storing unclaimed goods in private warehouses for exorbitant fees. It was discovered that three additional associates of Grant’s were profiting from this scheme.

GENERAL GRANT

ACCOMPLISHED WAR HERO - GENERAL ULYSSES S. GRANT

Although reforms were implemented to correct the import abuses, many in government were still skeptical. In 1872, one U.S. senator alleged in a speech that the corruption in the customs house continued. A second congressional investigation was unable to confirm this allegation.

Whiskey Ring

Perhaps the most shocking scandal involved President Grant’s private secretary. The allegations claimed that Midwestern distilleries had been cheating the federal government out of millions in liquor tax with the assistance of federal agents.

The distillers bribed federal agents to deter them from collecting the $.70/gallon of tax which equaled approximately $2 million per year. This scheme had been going on since the Lincoln administration and was therefore widespread. Of the 350 federal indictments issued, 110 resulted in conviction and $3 million of tax revenue was recovered.

GRANT

PRESIDENT GRANT FINISHED HIS BEST SELLING MEMOIRS SHORTLY BEFORE HIS DEATH FROM THROAT CANCER

During the investigation, it was alleged that President Grant’s personal secretary was directly involved in the whiskey ring. Grant took the unusual action of providing a deposition in his defense, which secured his acquittal but further damaged Grant’s reputation.

Historical Perspective 

After the astounding accomplishment of President Grant’s military career it was tragic to see multiple scandals tarnish his image. Few men have held such a significant role in the evolution of our young nation. His experiences were recorded and published by Mark Twain during the final months of his life. U.S. Grant's well written Memoirs became a major best seller and even today are considered to be an excellent read.

Raleigh DeGeer Amyx

RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - NATIONALLY KNOWN  COLLECTOR OF AMERICAN HISTORICAL MEMORABILIA

Artifacts

Raleigh DeGeer Amyx has been an avid collector of American artifacts for more than 30 years. He is proud to include personal items owned by President Ulysses S. Grant in his collection of museum-quality items.

Among these historically significant items are a handsome mahogany pocket cigar case with a brass shield monogrammed "USG 1862," a lock of President Grant’s hair encased in a brass oval frame, one of his straight razors, and an epaulet from Grant’s major general uniform. These items are to be sold by RRAUCTION.COM on September 17th & 18th, 2014, live in Boston, Mass.

And other select pieces in this collection may soon be available for sale. If you have a serious interest, please fill out the contact form below. Mr. Amyx would appreciate the opportunity to engage in a confidential discussion with you about a topic or item of interest.

SELECT MILITARY HISTORICAL RELICS MAY BE AVAILABLE

Tags: Presidential Memorabilia, Ulysses S. Grant

GENERAL U.S. GRANT - GRANT'S CIGAR CASE - FROM THE WHITE HOUSE

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Fri, Nov 25, 2011 @ 07:09 AM

GENERAL ULYSSES S. GRANT'S HANDSOME MAHOGANY CIGAR HOLDER POCKET CASE

U.S. GRANT CIGAR|GRANT CIGAR|GRANT CIGAR CASE|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLLECTION|THE AMERICAN HERITAGE COLLECTION|

GRANT CIGAR|GRANT CIGAR CASE|U.S. GRANT CIGAR|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|THE AMERICAN HERITAGE COLLECTION|

 Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) – The above Cigar Pocketholder Case is of handsome mahogany structure. It was owned and often used by U.S. Grant. Over 100 Years Ago, the official method of inventory in The White House was unstructured to say the least. This Cigar Case was one of those improperly inventoried items; and was located in The White House Attic, about 25 years after U.S. Grant Passed Away in 1885, from throat Cancer.  About 100 years ago, General Grant’s Cigar Case, with a Brass Shield Monogrammed "USG-1862" insert above, made its way into the hands of a family that had served, on the permanent staff, in the upstairs White House living quarters for a Half-Century or more.

GRANT|U.S. GRANT|GENERAL GRANT|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|THE AMERICAN HERITAGE COLLECTION|GENERAL & PRESIDENT U.S. GRANT CIRCA 1865

This important piece of history was presented to Raleigh DeGeer Amyx over a Quarter-Century ago by a servant that served in The White House for over 25 years. Since then it has been displayed and shared with many oithers during scheduled tours. In the near future this important piece will be shared with an Institution or another collector of note. In the meantime it will remain in The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection (a.k.a.) The American Heritage Collection.

the raleigh degeer amyx collection|thew american heritage collection|white house china|presidential china|HISTORIAN & COLLECTOR - RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX - THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS 2010

 

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Tags: Ulysses S. Grant

WHITE HOUSE CHINA - AMERICA'S 2ND LARGEST COLLECTION FINALLY LOCATED

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Tue, Mar 15, 2011 @ 02:10 PM

America's Second largest Collection of Official White House China has been, at last, located.  It consists of well over 100 Official White House State Dinner China pieces.  At this moment, we will cover one of the most desired, as well as Rare pieces.  Specifically, let us take a close look at the Magnificent State Dinner Dessert Plate, as chosen for The White House, by U.S. Grant and First Lady Julia Dent Grant.

u.s. grant white house china STUNNING GLIMPSE OF THE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA 9.25" DESSERT PLATE OF PRESIDENT U.S. GRANT 

Featured above and below is a 9 1/4 inch Official State Dinner, Dessert Plate – by a French manufacturer; but made by Haviland and Company. This Limoges hand-painted rendering, by a Gifted Artist, features a beautiful blooming Hosta. There were a total of 24 different American flowers authorized for use on the elegant service of U.S. Grant.

u.s. grant white house chinaA VIVID LOOK AT THE "COAT OF ARMS" AS SELECTED FOR USE BY THE PRESIDENT AND FIRST LADY - JULIA DENT GRANT 

When President and Mrs. Grant moved into the Executive Mansion in March 1869, Mrs. Grant began, at once, to renovate to her own taste.  The First Lady's very first purchases, for The White House, commenced almost immediately and she continued to buy numerous historical items over the next six months.

u.s. grant white house chinaA BREATH-TAKING CLOSE-UP OF THE BLOOMING HOSTA ON THIS U.S. GRANT DESSERT PLATE

In June 1869, Julia Dent Grant was on full steam ahead to order Official White House China – her very own State Dinner service.  She does so through a Washington DC dealer, J.W. Butler and Brothers, located just 12 blocks down the same street - right on Pennsylvania Avenue.  They had been supplying miscellaneous China to The Executive Mansion for several years and they ordered the Grant China from Haviland and Company. Perhaps they did so because Haviland had been winning prizes in World Exhibitions; especially the Great Exhibition, held in London, England in 1851.

u.s. grant and julia dent grantPRESIDENT U.S. GRANT & JULIA DENT GRANT RELAXING TOGETHER

When the State Dinner China finally arrived, it consisted of only 587 total pieces - with Flowers and a top center Logo – known then as the Official "Coat of Arms".  According to The White House Curator, William Allman, the above piece, now in the Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection (also known as The American Heritage Collection), is as fine as any example of Ulysses S. Grant's Official White House China that he had ever seen.  This procurement, according to Mr. Amyx, involved major assistance on the part of Historian and Author, Bob Doares. Dr. Doares played a significant role in the acquisition of this Rare Example, which he shared with Raleigh DeGeer Amyx. Although over 100 other Official White House China pieces encompass The Collection of Mr. Amyx, the Grant selection is one of his very favorites.

raleigh degeer amyxHISTORIAN & COLLECTOR - RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX - 2010

Shown below is the Elegant Silverware/Flatware of President U.S. Grant and First Lady Julia Dent Grant.  Note the Eagle Seal to the left embossed "U.S. Grant: President of the United States", as well as an exquisite handle which graced The Formal Table of The Grants.

the raleigh degeer amyx collectionELEGANT MONOGRAMMED SILVERWARE OF PRESIDENT GRANT

the raleigh degeer amyx collection

 

 

 


 


Tags: White House China, The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection, The American Heritage Collection, Ulysses S. Grant

WHITE HOUSE CHINA--HUGE & ELEGANT COLLECTION FINALLY LOCATED IN USA

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Fri, Mar 04, 2011 @ 08:09 AM

One of the world's finest collections of Official White House China, that graces the Formal State Dinners of our American First Families has finally been located.  The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection, also known as The American Heritage Collection, has one of the Top-Two quality collections of Official White House State Dinner China outside the White House. Included in the collection are well over 100 Official pieces from the Administration's of many of our American Presidents, although the majority did not order any in the first place.

white house china collectionA SELECTION OF OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA AS DISPLAYED IN THE COLLECTION OF RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX

These Presidents include, James Madison, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt, Benjamin Harrison, Harry S Truman, Ronald Reagan, Dwight D Eisenhower, Ulysses S Grant, James K Polk, Andrew Jackson, Rutherford B Hayes, Woodrow Wilson, James Buchanan, Franklin Pierce, Lyndon B.  Johnson, Jimmy Carter, James Monroe, U.S.S. Williamsburg Service Plates and Air Force One Official Presidential (forward-cabin) China.

raleigh degeer amyx white house china collection ADDITIONAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA SELECTIONS FROM THE COLLECTION OF RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX 

Official White House State Dinner China is considered to be a Rare collectible, as it is nearly impossible to obtain in authentic format.  However, in earlier White House days, Presidents such as Chester Arthur, would hold an auction on the White House lawn (hard for us to comprehend such an over the top act today) for items that were no longer in use, or met with President Chester Arthur's standards. Today, public auctions for White House furnishings? No way!  In the early 1890's, First Lady Caroline Scott Harrison, an accomplished painter of China herself, started preserving and inventorying the present Collection of White House China, which is now in use or on display at The White House.

white house china ANOTHER CASE OF OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA FOR YOU TO PERUSE - FROM THE COLLECTION OF RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX

Occasionally, Raleigh DeGeer Amyx sells a select few pieces of extra Official White House China -- Or perhaps a trade might ensue.  However, he is always in a serious mind frame, as he searches intensely for new historic additions to add to his prominent collection.

raleigh degeer amyxRALEIGH DEGEER AMYX - HISTORIAN & COLLECTOR - TO INCLUDE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA THAT CAN BE VIEWED ABOVE AS WELL BELOW THIS IMAGE

abraham lincoln white house chinaTHE ELEGANT WHITE HOUSE CHINA OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN - THIS DINNER PLATE IS IN THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION.

 

james monroe white house chinaTHE MAJESTY OF THE WHITE HOUSE CHINA OF JAMES MONROE - HIS DESSERT PLATE - FROM THE PRESIDENTIAL CHINA COLLECTION OF RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX

ronald reagan white house chinaTHE SUPREME ELEGANCE OF THE RONALD REAGAN SERVICE PLATE - AN EXAMPLE FROM THE OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA COLLECTION OF RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX

raleigh degeer amyx collectionFOR FURTHER EXAMPLES SEE THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION AND ALSO BE CERTAIN TO PERUSE THIS MARVELOUS BOOK OF THE COLLECTION OF A GENTLEMAN, BUT RECENTLY DECEASED, ROBERT L. McNEIL

 


 


 


Tags: Presidential Memorabilia, White House China, The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection, The American Heritage Collection, Ulysses S. Grant, James K. Polk, Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln, James Monroe

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