While Valentine's Day is always Feb. 14, Presidents' Day can be any one of seven dates, the third Monday in February closest to the 20th. In 1885 George Washington's birthday, Feb. 22, was made a national holiday. But in 1971, Congress decided that instead of celebrating the real birthdays of President Washington and President Lincoln (Feb. 12), there would a Monday celebration for both. Feb. 20 was chosen because it was between the two real birthdays.
Washington lived in the days before cameras, so he was remembered in designs for silhouettes, paintings, prints, medals, cameos, glass patterns, toys, Staffordshire figures to keep on the mantel and even drapery fabrics. Most of the memorabilia was copied from the few famous paintings of the president, images that still are used.
A President Washington doll made after 1880 looks like Washington in his presidential years. The doll is made of cloth with pressed and oil-painted features, and gray hair worn in a ponytail. His eyes are blue. The doll is dressed in a silk suit with a lace jabot and wears a tricorn hat, black stockings and shoes with buckles.
The costume is a familiar one. The doll probably was not made for a young child, but as a part of the 1889 centennial celebration of Washington's inauguration. It was made by Martha Jenks Chase, who started making portrait dolls in her backyard about 1880. A 25-inch-tall Chase Washington doll sold at auction in 2016 for $3,080.
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Prices from shows nationwide:
Depression glass, sugar, cherry blossom pattern, pink, embossed flowers, angular handles, scalloped rim, about 1935, 3 by 5 1/2 inches, $20.
Valentine card, embossed paper lace cover, honeycomb medallion, pink tissue, girl and dog, signed, G Fox Story, about 1860, 4 by 3 inches, $95.
Silver plate grapefruit holder, scroll openwork petals, domed saucer foot, crown mark, Rockport Co., 1940s, $130.