Manufacturer: Shenango China
User: Hotel Sherman – College Inn's Well of the Sea
Pattern: Well of the Sea
Date of plate: 1953
Notes: The first Sherman Hotel was built in Chicago, Ill. in 1844 and disappeared in the great conflagration of 1871. It was rebuilt, but by the turn of the century, the Hotel Sherman began to lose its luster and popularity and gained a reputation as the "Deadest Hotel" in town.
The hotel was acquired by Joseph Byfield, and by 1904, the new, improved Hotel Sherman and its famed restaurant were the talk of the town. He brought jazz to Chicago and for the next 30 years all the greats played "The College Inn!" Buoyed by the new business, Byfield invested several million dollars in new construction at the hotel.
In 1911, the main structure was rebuilt, followed by an additional $7 million, 23-story expansion in 1925, which brought the total room count to 1700. The great hotel closed in 1973, marking an end to the oldest, continuous operating hotel in Illinois. In 1980, the hotel was demolished and the site is now occupied by the Thompson Center, formerly the State of Illinois Center.
White body plate, continental shape. Multi-colored, abstract fish mobile design based on Artist Richard Koppe's mural paintings in the Well of the Sea restaurant at the Hotel Sherman. Click here to view other Well of the Sea items based on Koppe's murals.
The pattern name is confirmed by a photo from a 1953 Shenango catalog; however, it is unlikely that this pattern was used exclusively at the Sherman.
See above an ad placed in the same 1953 Shenango catalog for the Well of the Sea pattern. "With permission, we offer this outstanding Shenango custom original which was designed for one of the most exclusive hotels in Chicago. The form of the Continental shape combined with the sensitive interpretation of the decoration makes Well of the Sea an honest expression of contemporary design."
For related info:
Sherman Chicago Hotel by Bauscher Brothers
Sherman Chicago Hotel 2 by Fraunfelter China
Sherman Chicago Hotel 3 by Bauscher Brothers
Sherman Chicago Hotel 4 by Syracuse
College Inn of the Hotel Sherman by Maddock Pottery Co.
Palisades for a similar pattern by Wallace China