President Harding’s personally-owned and -used poker set. Set consists of a 9.5″ diameter ‘lazy-susan-style’ mahogany holder which stands 4.25″ tall, has 12 circular openings to hold chips, and a chrome-type handle attached to the top. A total of 164 beige, red, and blue chips are with the set, almost all marked on both sides with a version of the United States seal. Also included is a deck of cards, and the set’s black leather cover. A quality set befitting a sitting president. Accompanied by a detailed 1982 letter of provenance on White House letterhead, by Lillian Rogers Parks, who was a best selling author as well as housekeeper and seamstress at the White House for over 30 years, from President Hoover through President Eisenhower. Letter reads, in part: “These poker chips and holder were owned and used by President Warren G. Harding. When the President died suddenly on August 2, 1923, the First Lady, Florence Harding gave them to my Mama, Maggie Rogers, First Maid of the White House. [Given her position, my mother was often around the first family]. This was during the few days Mrs. Harding was packing so that President and Mrs. Calvin Coolidge could move into the White House…The President was an avid poker player and he used this set of poker chips as well as others.” In fine condition, with expected wear from use. Harding, a renowned poker player, is said to have gambled away an entire set of White House china dating back to the presidency of Benjamin Harrison on a single hand. An exemplary presidential offering.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.