Published: July 19, 2021
EAST DENNIS, MASS. – Property of a direct descendant of Thomas Jefferson, the contents of the Brick House at Coolidge Point, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass., crossed the block at Eldred’s on July 15. The single-owner sale was led by a Chinese blue and white porcelain covered jar, which brought $200,000, selling online. The unusually decorated piece had a six-character Kangxi mark on base. It was several lots of Thomas Jefferson armorial Chinese export porcelain, however, that grabbed bidders’ attention, centering around a storied circa 1790 Chinese export “J” dinner service long associated with Thomas Jefferson. It is included in Margaret Brown Klapthor’s Official White House China (1984) and has been on display as Jefferson’s service at Monticello, the White House and other US State Department facilities. The lots ranged from single platters to large sets of plates and bowls. All featured a gilt script “J” enclosed within a shield with a blue outline studded with 13 gilt stars and surmounted by a knight’s helm set on a garlanded arabesque. Leading the group was a lot of ten plates, which brought $31,250, including buyer’s premium. They were one of 24 lots of the armorial export that sold for a combined $255,000. The pieces were acquired by Jefferson’s great-grandson, Thomas Jefferson Coolidge, in the Nineteenth Century, and descended through the family. The pieces were sold to phone, online and in-person bidders.
A more extensive review of the sale will run in an upcoming issue.
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