William J. Clinton Presidential Center, May 12, 2007
The Clinton service is remarkable not only for its revolutionary design but also for its significance to the history of the American presidency.
The Clinton administration coincided with the bicentennial of the White House as home to America’s first families, a role it had played since John Adams, the second president, took up residence there on November 1, 1800. To commemorate this event, and also replenish the stock of official state china for the first time in nearly two decades, President William Clinton and his wife, Hillary, commissioned Lenox to create 300 12-piece place settings in 2000.
In a dramatic departure from previous White House services, the Clinton china features a border of pale creamy yellow, instead of a bright primary color, and images of the White House facades, in place of the customary presidential seal. Each piece in the placesetting is decorated with a different pattern, the motifs derived from outstanding architectural elements found in the State Dining Room, East Room, and Diplomatic Reception Room.
Fittingly, the china was used for the first time at a dinner attended by former Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and George Bush, their wives, and Lady Bird Johnson, former first lady.
Clinton Presidential Library and Center
Little Rock Area
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