Items in President Kennedy's Oval Office

Below is a list of items from the Oval Office during John F. Kennedy's presidency. For more information please contact


  • Desk lamp: Hercolite Executive (no. 605SB) made by Herco Art Manufacturing of Wallingford, Connecticut.


  • "The White House Long Ago" - Watercolor of the White House by Jacqueline B. Kennedy (on table and desk) now in Jacqueline Kennedy exhibit in the Museum;
  • "Constitution - Guerriere" (Left over mantel) Loaned by the National Gallery;
  • "Bonhomme Richard" (Center over mantel) Loaned by the National Gallery;
  • "United States versus the Macedonia" - Loaned to John F. Kennedy by J. Welles Henderson (Philadelphia Lawyer; Chairman of the Philadelphia Maritime Museum) (Right over mantel);
  • "Buffalo Bull" - by George Catlin - Loaned by the Smithsonian Museum of American Art (next to door);
  • "Buffalo Hunt under Wolf Skin Masks" - by George Catlin - Loaned by the Smithsonian Museum of American Art (next to door).

The Lavie Vase

  • An inscribed Worcester (Flight and Barr period) porcelain vase presented to Captain Thomas Lavie by his brother-in-law. The vase commemorates Lavie's 1806 capture of the French frigate Guerriere off the Faroe Islands while in command of the H.M.S. Blanche. During this victory not a single man in Captain Lavie's command lost his life. The vase was given to John F. Kennedy during his administration.

Model Boats

The Danmark

  • 1933 training ship loaned to the United States Coast Guard by Denmark during World War II, was part of the President's personal collection of ship models (red).

The Sea Witch

  • Active from 1846-1856, this China Clipper was the first ship to go around Cape Horn to California in less than one hundred days and twice broke speed records from Canton to the United States (black).


  • Chair that belonged to President Kennedy when he attended Harvard, and which he brought with him to the White House and kept next to his desk during his administration.
  • Chair given to President Kennedy in February 1961 by the Harvard Class of 1964. Affixed to the back of the chair is an engraved brass plate.

Executive chair

  • Upholstered in black leather and black synthetic material, the chair has a wood and brass base with wheels. The chair swivels and tilts. The seat cushion is a woven synthetic material over foam. The arms and back are made of black padded leather. President Kennedy also had a pad created to support his back while in the chair. This contoured pad is made of a firm foam and covered in black cloth. The pad has two fabric loops that can be slipped over the back of the chair to hold the pad in place. The original manufacturer's label read: W. H. Gunlocke Chair Co. Wayland, NY; NO. #2292 H. R. Wal. 7110-634-0430; Cover BLK. LEA. & BLK. GP.