Memorabilia News

November 2013 Featured Item – JFK: “The Rice Hotel Reed & Barton Hotel Service Ware”

This piece is not only a wonderful example of vintage Reed & Barton Hotel Service Ware, but also a historical piece of JFK memorabilia!


This chafing dish is from the landmark hotel “The Rice” in Houston, Texas. The hotel was erected on the site of the old Capitol of the Republic of Texas which housed the Texas Congress from 1837-1839. It was turned into “The Rice” Hotel in 1883 and the very first air conditioned room in Houston was actually in “The Rice” Hotel cafeteria in 1922.

“The Rice” Hotel was also the site that President John F. Kennedy visited just 15 hours before his assassination on November 22, 1963 in Dallas. On a visit to Houston for a testimonial dinner at the Rice University, the President made an impromptu visit to “The Rice” hotel ballroom where the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) were conferencing. After addressing the crowd and spending around 45 minutes in the ballroom, the President proceeded to his other engagements. According to the identifying marks on this chafing dish, it was made in 1947.

JFK, “The Rice” Hotel, and vintage Reed & Barton all in one collectible item! Unpolished and with the original patina on the piece due to its historical reference and significance. It comes together in 4 pieces and is in excellent condition.

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