THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION IS THE LARGEST PRIVATE COLLECTION OF WHITE HOUSE CHINA IN THE WORLD
When you collect something as extraordinary as Official White House China, you can’t help but love every single item in your collection. Each piece of porcelain is lovely – in some cases even the word “stunning” seems an inadequate description. In older Presidential china, each piece is truly unique. It may look like the other plates or bowls or serving pieces in the service, but its decoration was individually painted by hand. Each piece a work of art in its own right.
Nonetheless, Raleigh DeGeer Amyx admits to having a few favorites in his collection of Official White House China. Let’s have a look.
“TOP OF THE HEAP”
Surely no one except Mr. Amyx himself would dare use a term such as “heap” to describe his exceptional collection, even in jest! Since it’s impossible for him to pick just one favorite, here are My Amyx’s “top of the heap” picks:
ABRAHAM LINCOLN'S 1861 SMALL OVAL SERVING PLATTER
Serving pieces are far more rare because they are fewer produced than plates and other dining pieces. This double-handled serving piece is unusually rare because of its petite size, just 8.5” x 12” – there couldn’t have been more than three or four originally produced, perhaps fewer. This platter is a favorite for its rarity but also for its originality, because it features an unusual color selected by First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln, called Solferino purple.
EXTRAORDINARILY RARE 1786 GEORGE WASHINGTON OVAL SERVING PLATE IN NEAR PRISTINE CONDITION - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
GEORGE WASHINGTON'S 1786 SMALL OVAL SERVING PLATTER
This porcelain is not only rare but unusual in that it qualifies as Official White House China even though it predates the White House. The platter belonged to George and Martha Washington, who had to provide their own porcelain for use at state dinners and other occasions.
EXTRAORDINARILY RARE 1861 ABRAHAM LINCOLN OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA EGG CUP. THE LINCOLN'S ONLY ORDERED 24 EGG CUPS OF WHICH ONLY A FEW ARE KNOWN TO STILL EXIST - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
ABRAHAM LINCOLN 1861 EGG CUP
One of only 24 ever produced, this tiny specimen was discovered after lying hidden in the bottom of an antique porcelain vase, wrapped in newspapers, for 100 years. How could a piece with a story like that not be a favorite?!
EXTRAORDINARILY RARE 1806 JAMES MADISON LOZENGE SERVING DISH - ONLY 30 ORIGINAL PIECES OF MADISON WHITE HOUSE CHINA REMAIN, OF WHICH 5 PIECES ARE PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
JAMES MADISON'S 1806 LOZENGE SERVING DISHES
These gilt-trimmed serving dishes easily stand out among other examples of Official White House China because of their almost X-shaped design. It is this tremendous originality that makes them especially appealing to Mr. Amyx.
EXTRAORDINARILY RARE 1879 RUTHERFORD B. HAYES OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA DINNER PLATE FEATURING A LOVELY HAND-PAINTED COLORADO ROCKY MOUNTAIN MULE DEER, DESSERT PLATE FEATURING A BALTIMORE ORIOLE, AND A SOUP BOWL FEATURING A BEACHSIDE CAMPING SCENE - ALL PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
RUTHERFORD B. HAYES 1879 TRIO
Unlike other Presidential china, the Hayes collection features unusually-shaped pieces and incredibly detailed, colorful renditions of American wildlife, all painted entirely by hand. The trio of examples in The Amyx Collection include:
- An elegant, comma-shaped dessert plate featuring a Baltimore oriole
- A 10” round dinner plate featuring a Colorado Rocky Mountain mule deer
- A 9” decagon (10-sided) soup bowl featuring a beachside camping scene
Beautiful as they are, these pieces rank as favorites for Mr. Amyx primarily for their rarity and originality.
GENERAL DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER’S WWII LEATHER JACKET - PART OF THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
MORE THAN CHINA
Anyone who knows anything about Raleigh DeGeer Amyx knows he became renowned for his collection of Presidential memorabilia well before he began to specialize in Official White House China. Not surprisingly, then, he has a couple of personal favorites that are not porcelain but Presidential personal artifacts. His top three?
“There are other top elite relics,” he says, but the list of “favorites” has to stop somewhere. At least for now.
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.