Highly Carved Mahogany Executive Pedestal Desk
After the well‑known "H.M. Resolute" oval office example, inset leather top, three frieze drawers, long drawer and two short drawers over Federal eagle carved door, cabinet doors to the side, molded blocked base Dimensions: 31 7/8 in. H, 72 1/2...
After the well‑known "H.M. Resolute" oval office example, inset leather top, three frieze drawers, long drawer and two short drawers over Federal eagle carved door, cabinet doors to the side, molded blocked base
Dimensions: 31 7/8 in. H, 72 1/2 in. W, 47 in. D
The Resolute desk is a large, nineteenth-century partners' desk mostly chosen by presidents of the United States for use in the White House Oval Office as the Oval Office desk. It was a gift from Queen Victoria to President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1880 and was built from the timbers of the British Arctic exploration ship Resolute.
HMS Resolute was part of a five-ship squadron under Edward Belcher sent from Britain in April 1852 to search for the missing British explorer Sir John Franklin, who had left Britain in 1845 in search of the fabled Northwest Passage through the Canadian Arctic. The Western Division of the squadron, consisting of HMS Resolute and HMS Intrepid under Captain Kellett's command, sailed West and wintered at Deally Island off Melville Island. The Eastern Division, consisting of HMS Assistance and Pioneer under Sir Edward Belcher's command, sailed North up the Wellington Channel and wintered near Northumberland Sound. The men spent the autumn of 1852, and the spring and summer of 1853 sledging across the Arctic in search of the Franklin Expedition, as well as the men on HMS Investigator (Captain Robert McClure), and HMS Enterprise (Captain Richard Collinson). After finding and rescuing McClure and the crew of Investigator, Resolute and Intrepid sailed east, but had to winter in the pack ice, gradually moving East all winter. Belcher's two ships moved south in the Wellington Channel before being frozen in again near Disaster Bay. In the spring of 1854 Belcher ordered the abandonment of four of his five ships, and the men gathered at Beechey Island. Ironically, by the time they were ready to leave, both Assistance and Pioneer had broken free and had traveled 45 miles South in the Wellington Channel until they were only a few miles from Beechey Island. This made no difference to Belcher who was simply desperate to go home. Since he had made his two ships "hells afloat" as he always did, his men were also desperate to leave. However, Kellett only abandoned Resolute and Intrepid under protest. The officers and men returned home on HMS North Star and the relief ships HMS Phoenix and HMS Talbot. (Wikipedia)