George Washington preferred a style of dining that allowed his guests to help themselves to food and drink. Anticipating large presidential entertainments, he ordered twelve wine coolers from England in October 1789. Eight two-bottle coolers were for serving Madeira and claret during the meal, while "four quadruple coolers" were for after dinner use. Washington requested that his coolers be fitted with individual holders for each decanter so that they would "always stand upright and never be at variance with each other." After its arrival in 1790, this two bottle cooler was used at state dinners at the President's Mansion in Philadelphia. It continued to provide Washington with an orderly dinner table upon his retirement to Mount Vernon. More





Fused silverplate on copper, silver


Overall: 8 1/4 in. x 11 3/8 in. x 7 in. (20.96 cm x 28.89 cm x 17.78 cm)
Other (Bottle openings): 3 7/8 in. x 3 7/8 in. (9.86 cm x 9.86 cm)
Other (Basin): 7 in. x 10 in. x 6 1/8 in. (17.78 cm x 25.4 cm x 15.56 cm)


Gift of Mary Lee Bowman and Robert E. Lee IV, 1981

Object Number



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