|The Eisenhower Necklace Tiara|
It's not often that we get to talk about a tiara with a presidential connection, but this little gem gives us just such an opportunity. With silver-topped gold, fourteen button-shaped pearls, and diamonds in various cuts (single, rose, and old mine-cut) totaling around 4.7 carats, this scroll design has detachable sides and can be worn as a tiara or a necklace. It has a fitted case stamped Carrington & Co. Jewellers, the English firm, but we know it from its American association: the jewel belonged to Mamie Doud Eisenhower (1896-1979), the wife of Dwight D. Eisenhower, President of the United States from 1953 to 1961.
Mamie Eisenhower (second left) wearing the necklace as First Lady in 1959I don't know if Mrs. Eisenhower ever wore it as a tiara, but she did wear it as a necklace during her time at the White House, as shown above. Tiaras are so associated with royalty today, it would certainly cause an uproar to see one worn by a first lady in the United States (as it would in many other countries). Even taking the tiara portion out of the equation, a substantial jewel collection alone could be turned into a controversy now. But fifty-odd years ago, Mrs. Eisenhower had some nice pieces in her collection, and she wore them to official functions when appropriate.
Important Jewels sale on September 24th and 25th. They'll also be among those exhibited at Sotheby's Runway of Jewels opening on September 19th.
Would you make this a part of your collection?
P.S.: It's a two post day! Keep scrolling.
Photos: Sotheby's / Getty Images / White House