The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection
 
OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE CHINA

THE IMPRESSIVE CHINESE EXPORT PORCELAIN
OF THOMAS JEFFERSON - CIRCA 1790's


Official White House China Abraham Lincoln

(Thomas Jefferson - 1743-1826) - This Chinese Export "J." Dinner Service has long been linked to Thomas Jefferson, including being published in Official White House China (both editions, in brief, mentioning early chinese export) by M.B. Klapthor, once on display at Monticello, the U.S. State Department Diplomatic Reception Rooms and the White House (before at least 1908, when it was first published in Century magazine). Modern scholarship has been unable to find explicit records of the service in Jefferson's papers, and archaeological work at the slave quarters has not turned up a shard displaying the initital "J." - not at all unusual as shards go. And on that same track, it should be noted that at Mount Vernon they also have yet to turn up shards of any of the coveted Society of Cincinnatti porcelain of George Washington. However, Thomas Jefferson's 19th century direct lineal descendants strongly believed in Jefferson's ownership of the 1790's "J." service, seeking to re-acquire it, and then gifting four "J." pieces to The White House in the early 1900's - where each "J.", 1790's chinese porcelain piece has remained for over 100 years.

 

THOMAS JEFFERSON'S "J." IMPRESSIVE SEAL - ON JEFFERSON'S CIRCA 1790s CHINESE EXPORT PRESIDENTIAL CHINA - MOST ALL EXAMPLES SHARED HERE ARE FROM THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

Thomas Jefferson's seal on his presidential China

 

At his death in 1807, Jefferson was more than $107,000 in debt; Thomas Jefferson's Granddaughter, Ellen Wayles Randolph, organized an auction of massive amounts of his personal effects, including slaves, to raise funds. Ellen's grandson is the family member who re-acquired the service. Ellen was alive during much of this grandson's youth; when this direct Jefferson family descendant lent the service to public collections, at the turn of the century. At that time there was a sharing of the family's history with and knowledge of "J." chinese 1790's export service. It was also during this same time period (1909) when The White House was gifted four pieces of the "J." 1790's chinese export service.

President Abraham Lincoln
CHINESE EXPORT CIRCA 1790'S
THOMAS JEFFERSON "J." CIDER JUG - SPECIAL NOTE: THE MOTTO OF THOMAS JEFFERSON'S OFFICIAL SEAL CURVES UNDER THE "J." SEAL - "REBELLION TO TYRANTS IS OBEDIENCE TO GOD"

First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln
A FOUNDING AMERICAN FATHER - OF IMMENSE SIGNIFICANCE TO US ALL THOMAS JEFFERSON
OF MONTICELLO - VIRGINIA

 


Abraham Lincoln's Buff China Service
THOMAS JEFFERSON'S NEOCLASSICAL SHIELD STUDDED WITH THIRTEEN GILT STARS WHICH ENCLOSES THE SCRIPT INITIAL "J." SURMOUNTED BY A KNIGHT'S HELM - LIKE THE THOMAS JEFFERSON DINNER PLATE THIS MORE ATTRACTIVE SHALLOW SOUP/DESSERT BOWL IS AN IDENTICAL 9 1'2" IN DIAMETER - FROM THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION
Another very intriguing aspect of the 'Jefferson' service is its close relationship to a service known to have been made for Christopher Gore (1758-1827), an early Governor of Massachusetts and U.S. Senator. In 1796, during Jefferson's Vice-Presidency, Gore was appointed by Washington to the Jay Commission, spending 8 years in London, where he moved in exalted social circles. Gore had married Rebecca Amory Payne in 1785, the daughter of a wealthy merchant and maritime insurer. Unlike so many of their peers, the Gores remained wealthy, building the neoclassical Gore Place in 1804-5 for about $24,000. It is certainly plausible that Senator Christopher Gore, or his wealthy and ambitious wife, ordered the two services (which primarily differ only in their initials - "G." in lieu of "J."), one to be presented to Thomas Jefferson, perhaps to celebrate his 1800 election to the Presidency.

Thomas Jefferson Presidential China
A VERY UNCOMMON 10" THOMAS JEFFERSON DOUBLE MONOGRAMMED "J." SQUARE SERVING BOWL WITH DOUBLE NEOCLASSICAL SHIELDS OF IMPRESSIVE DESIGN ON EXTERIOR THOMAS JEFFERSON'S SHIELD STUDDED WITH THIRTEEN GILT STARS WHICH ENCLOSES THE SCRIPT INITIAL "J." - THIS EXAMPLE IS FROM THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION


Of compelling note of Jefferson ownership, of the "J." chinese export, is an impressive cider jug from the same service, with the dramatic addition of Jefferson's adopted motto "REBELLION TO TYRANTS IS OBEDIENCE TO GOD". That impressive cider jug, ( illustrated above left) is now in the collection of the Cincinnati Art Museum. This impressive 1790's cider jug descended directly through the family of President John Adams - until it was sold at Parke-Bernet Galleries, 12 January 1946, Adams-Quincy Heirlooms from the Heritage of Mary Adams Quincy (1846-1929). This is of compelling historical interest and aids dramatically in defining the "J." monogrammed service as being that of Founding Father, Thomas Jefferson. A significant portion of the above research was accomplished by Ms. Becky MacGuire - a highly respected international authority on early Chinese Export Porcelain.

Thomas Jefferson Presidential Seal

TO THE LEFT IS THE OFFICIAL SEAL - SINCE 1776, OF THOMAS JEFFERSON. THIS FOUNDING FATHER USED THIS "T.J." SEAL, WITH THE SURROUNDING JEFFERSON MOTTO OF "REBELLION TO TYRANTS IS OBEDIENCE TO GOD". THIS SAME THOMAS JEFFERSON PERSONAL MOTTO WAS ALSO USED ON JEFFERSON'S CIDER JUG, VIVIDLY ILLUSTRATED ABOVE ON LEFT SIDE. IN ADDITION, THE THOMAS JEFFERSON MOTTO IS ALSO A PART OF THE GATEWAY POST TO THE PRESIDENT'S OWN BURIAL SITE, AT JEFFERSON'S BEAUTIFUL MONTICELLO HOME IN VIRGINIA.


Keep in mind that in 1776 three Founding Fathers - Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, were assigned to an important committee, by the 1776 Continental Congress, for the purpose of coming up with an Official Seal and Motto as well as a a design for the United States of America. "E Pluribus Unum" was ultimately chosen America's Motto. But Jefferson still thought highly of another back-up Motto selection by the 1776 committee in - "Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God". Thus, Thomas Jefferson chose exactly this Motto, which was authored during the time of the original 1776 committee of Jefferson, Adams and Franklin. Thomas Jefferson, as did other prominent officials of that era, felt the personal and professional need for his own personal motto, to be used as his Official Seal for the remainder of his life - also illustrated on this page. Indeed this same Seal, as well as this Motto are on the gate posts at the entrance to Thomas Jeffferson's very own burial site, on Virginia's beautiful Monticello grounds.

Lincoln Buff China Serviing Piece
A NEOCLASSICAL SHIELD DESIGN AND EXTRAORDINARY THOMAS JEFFERSON SERVING TUREEN AND COVER WITH KNOP- AND WITH AN IMPOSING 4 DIFFERENT NEOCLASSICAL "J." MONOGRAMS - OVERALL AN IMPRESSIVE 12 1/2" - WITH CURVACEOUS DOUBLE HANDLES - THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

Thomas Jefferson also is also belived to have had manufactured chinese export cider jugs. They would have freely made cider in the apple growing country of Virginia. And Jefferson probably gifted one of his cider jugs to his old friend, John Adams. Thus the "J." cider jug that descended through the Adams family, until it was to ultimately reside in 1956, in The Cincinnatti Museum of Art. This same cider jug resides in same Museum as of 2013. And four different "J." monogrammed chinese export pieces were gifted to The White House over a century ago, in 1909, directly from a descendant of Thomas Jefferson, his Great-Grandson, Thomas Jefferson Coolidge. These same Jefferson "J." four pieces reside to this same date, 2014, as part of The White House China Collection. Final research and edit, reference history of Thomas Jefferson porcelain, as explained on this entire page - 2014.

However all Thomas Jefferson "J." Chinese export selections shown on this page are from The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection.


ANOTHER EARLY THOMAS JEFFERSON CHINESE EXPORT (CIRCA 1810) IS THE "T.J." PORCELAIN. THIS SCARCE "T.J." EXAMPLE WAS LOCATED AND RESCUED A HALF CENTURY AGO BY LEON JACKSON, JR. OF VIRGINIA.Covered Serving Piece of Lincol Buff China

THIS CUP & SAUCER IS FROM THE VIRGINIA HOME, KNOWN AS "SNOWDEN", JUST 20 MILES SOUTH OF MONTICELLO. "SNOWDEN" WAS OWNED BY THE PRESIDENT'S BROTHER, RANDOLPH JEFFERSON -- THIS "T.J." TEA CUP AND SAUCER HAS A CUP, 2" IN HEIGHT, WHICH RESTS WITHIN IT'S 5"INCH SHALLOW "T.J." SAUCER. IT IS BELIEVED THAT THIS THOMAS JEFFERSON SERVICE MAY VERY WELL HAVE CONSISTED ONLY OF "T.J." TEA CUPS AND SAUCERS.

TO THE RIGHT IS A STUNNING NEOCLASSICAL DESIGNED THOMAS JEFFERSON SERVING PIECE, WHICH WAS ONE OF HIS "J." INITIALED, CIRCA 1790'S, 7 1/2" SAUCEBOATS WITH 7 1/2" LEAF-SHAPED SAUCEBOAT STANDS - THE RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX COLLECTION

Thomas Jefferson Presidential China


Raleigh DeGeer Amyx in library
RALEIGH DeGEER AMYX - HISTORIAN AND COLLECTOR
ALL THOMAS JEFFERSON PIECES ILLUSTRATED AND DESCRIBED ABOVE
ARE IN THE WELL-KNOWN COLLECTION OF MR. AMYX.


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ATTENTION: Would be pleased to purchase Presidential China from Collectors, Former Lenox, Castleton, Tiffany, Shenango, Wedgwood, Pickard and White House Employees

My name is Raleigh DeGeer Amyx. Currently I possess the most prolific American Presidential China collection in America. However, it is always in the forefront of my mind to keep improving the quality and quantity of this White House China collection.

If you happen to have several examples of Presidential China that are either duplicates, or have less appeal to you today than they once did, then feel free to contact me immediately using the contact form or phone number below - I would be very interested in buying your sample Presidential pieces. With the above in mind, please know that all contacts from you to me are to remain totally confidential in nature. You will find me a fair man.

Please feel free to review the current Presidential China pieces in The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection on this website. However, I have multiple floor-to-near-ceiling lighted and mirrored cases awaiting additional and/or duplicate Official White House China examples to include along with existing highlights.

 

FREE FULL-COLOR E-BOOK:  ELEGANT WHITE HOUSE CHINA  OF THE 19TH CENTURY

SPECIAL NOTE:
Mr. Amyx is always looking for new and interesting additions to this portion of the collection, via trade and/or purchase. Also, some items may be available for purchase.
In addition, be sure to take a moment and go to eBay seller's site RDA38
for current eBay listings.


The Collection of Raleigh DeGeer Amyx is protected by a State-of-the-Art Security System including Sound and Video; as well as Infrared recordings of all visitors. A select few items, illustrated on this website, are not now and were never a part of The Raleigh DeGeer Amyx Collection. Certain portions of this vast Collection, including all Provenance, is securely housed at a secured remote location.

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