P & P Chair Co. – Makers of the Kennedy Rocker Close Doors After 82 Years

December 30, 2008

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The P & P Chair Company in Asheboro, North Carolina announced last week that they will be closing their factory after 82 years in business. The P & P Chair Company was founded by W. C. Page Sr. and a friend, Arthur E. Presnell in 1926. P & P made it’s claim to fame in the early 1960’s with the creation of the authentic “Kennedy Rocker”. John F. Kennedy chose the chair by recommendation of his physician, Dr. Janet Travell. The chair was upholstered by the White House upholsterer Larry Arata.

File Photo/News & Record)

Chairs stacked and curing at the P & P Chair Co. factory in Asheboro, North Carolina (Image: File Photo/News & Record)

Kennedy in his P & P Chair Company Authentic "Carolina Rocker"

Kennedy in his P & P Chair Company Authentic "Carolina Rocker" (from the LIFE archive)

I was shocked to hear this news because I grew up with this chair at my parent’s home. My parents had this chair created and upholstered for them directly from Larry Arata and his wife. Thanks Mom for sending me the pictures of my family’s Kennedy Rocker below.

The Hart Family's "Kennedy Rocker" from the P & P Chair Company with Upholstry from Larry Arata

The Hart Family's "Kennedy Rocker" from the P & P Chair Company with Upholstry by Larry Arata

Plaque on the back of my family's rocker

Plaque on the back of my family's rocker

Larry Arata's custom tag on the back of the chair

Larry Arata's custom tag on the back of the chair

Larry Arata's card underneath the arm

Larry Arata's card underneath the arm

5 Responses to “P & P Chair Co. – Makers of the Kennedy Rocker Close Doors After 82 Years”

  1. RSS ne rabotaet (( Mozhet eto iz-za kodirovki?

  2. Joe becvar said

    I also have a similar chair with the plaq dated 1972 alongwith several letters for Mr.Arata about delivey of the chair. I’m also interested in sellig it, have yo sold yours or any estimate of value

    thanks
    have a great day
    joe

  3. Robert S. Long said

    Hey Folks:

    Did you know Larry Arata died in 1979 of cancer? What in the world does “an exact copy” of his work mean on the plaque above? 1986? You’ve GOT to be kidding. I am in possession of the bonafide LAST authentic Kennedy Rocker upholstered by Larry Arata.

  4. T K said

    I have two rocker made by P&P, early sixties. They need re-craning. got any suggestion where I can get these done? I was going to P&P factory until I got the bad news of their closing.

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