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    Description

    STUNNING ANDREW JOHNSON MINIATURE FORMERLY AT THE WHITE HOUSE.

    Elegant hand-painted image, signed "Bay," on celluloid.  The use of celluloid dates this item to the late 19th century, rather than back to Johnson's presidency.  American statesmen were popular subjects for European miniature artists during this era.

    Obtained from longtime White House maid Lillian Rogers Parks.  It had been given to her mother, Maggie Rogers, by First Lady Ellen Louise Wilson (the first Mrs. Wilson).  Rogers worked as a White House maid from the Taft administration until the Eisenhowers, and her daughter followed in her footsteps.  Rogers did not provide her daughter with detailed information about the Johnson miniature, but did say "this lovely item was around the White House many years."

    The provenance is documented in a signed 1982 letter from Parks typed on stationery headed with the Presidential Seal and "The White House, Washington."  She also provides some fascinating reminiscences about the Wilsons, whom she had met as a young girl assisting her mother in her work.  "President Wilson took a kindly interest in my Mamma.   The First Lady had told the President that Maggie was raising a crippled daughter - me.  One day, the President saw Mamma washing down the grand stair way.  He said to an usher, 'I don't ever want to see Maggie on her knees again.'  Backstairs, they called the President and First Lady, 'The Professor and His Lady.'  I don't think a single servant disliked the First Lady, Mrs. Wilson.  She was always doing something for others.  We were so saddened when she passed away.  Once, Mamma heard the President talking out loud to the First Lady as he stood beside her body.  He picked at the lace on her dress, and Mamma could hardly keep from crying at this wistful, hopeless scene.  The President spoke aloud, brokenly,  "Never, never, never.'  Then bowed and walked out."

    This Andrew Johnson portrait is a beautiful object, which would be very desirable even without its intriguing White House origins.

    LOA from Dan Knoll and Dave Bushing/GAI.

    Please note: Due to the size and/or weight of this lot, additional shipping costs may apply.



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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    July, 2004
    29th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 180
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