First Official State China: C. H. Pillivuyt & Cie. - State China Tureen, 1873<img alt="" src="/sites/GovernorsMansion/Exhibitions/PublishingImages/Art-of-Illinois/State-China-Tureen.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />First Official State China: C. H. Pillivuyt & Cie. - State China Tureen, 1873<div class="ExternalClassCB6E5CB33A3D4E09B50072E4B5E499C6"><p>​<img class="pull-right" alt="State China Tureen, 1873" src="/sites/GovernorsMansion/Exhibitions/PublishingImages/Art-of-Illinois/State-China-Tureen-Seal.jpg" style="margin:5px;max-width:344px;" />This tureen was part of a large china service commissioned for the Illinois Governor's Mansion, probably by First Lady Helen Judson Beveridge in 1873. It features an interpretation of the 1868 state seal: an eagle holding a banner in its beak with the words "State Sovereignty" and "National Union," perched on an orb inscribed "1818"—the year in which Illinois became the 21st state. </p><p>It was made in France by the firm of C. H. Pillivuyt & Cie., a leading producer of porcelain that enjoyed an international reputation, having won a gold medal at the International Exposition in Paris in 1867. It is possible that Mrs. Beveridge viewed the company's wares at the 1873 Vienna International Exposition when she spent May through October of that year touring Europe. She may have joined the large delegation from the state visiting the world's fair in Vienna, while Governor Beveridge remained in Illinois. </p><p>Shortly after John L. Beveridge assumed the governorship in January of 1873, the state legislature appropriated funds for the refurbishment and refurnishing of the "dilapidated" and scantily furnished Governor's Mansion. Mrs. Beveridge personally supervised its refurnishing, including the selection of china. The 1874 report of the state auditor notes that Governor Beveridge was reimbursed "for amount paid for table furniture purchased for Executive Mansion." Unfortunately, the pattern and maker of the subject pieces were not identified in the notes. One assumes that the new dinner service arrived in time for the Beveridge's first official reception at the Mansion on January 20, 1874.</p><p>In 1883, when Governor Cullom held a New Year's Day reception, guests enjoyed a table "spread with a handsome service of decorated china."1 But not all were impressed with the quality of what was most likely the state's first official china. In 1890, a discerning reporter visiting the Mansion during Governor Joseph W. Fifer's term, described the service as "too common to grace the table of a Governor," noting that: "The china is decorated with what is supposed to be the coat of arms of Illinois, but the decorator has taken such liberties with it one would hardly recognize the design were he not informed of what was intended."</p><p>The French service was still in use in June 1903, when multiple place settings and serving pieces were visible in a photo of the state dining room taken during a luncheon held for President Theodore Roosevelt. As late as 1918, a reporter called attention to "the famous Mansion china, which has been in the possession of the house since Governor Beveridge held office."</p></div>GP0|#57368156-b482-488f-9070-799f0110e7a7;L0|#057368156-b482-488f-9070-799f0110e7a7|First Official State China;GTSet|#6a9f5109-021d-478a-ae73-864102492159;GPP|#b8008031-8d86-41bf-8c8c-657f66f046d4;GPP|#be65f490-4890-487c-bb16-c396d99511f7China;#PermanentPorcelain;#Mehun-sur-Yevre, FrancePorcelain, 9 × 12½ inches, Collection of the Illinois Governor’s Mansion Association