Tuesday, January 6, 2009


William Adams Q: I recently bought a dish with this mark for $5. I have been doing research but only find information on William Adams and Sons. This mark is just William Adams. When was this mark used?

A: Members of the Adams family began making pottery in the Staffordshire area of England almost 600 years ago. The name "William Adams" appeared in several generations. In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, there were three different potteries operated by cousins named "William Adams." One of them established a pottery at Greengates, Tunstall, in 1789. After he died, the pottery was operated by his son, then changed hands again, and later was bought by another William Adams (b.1798-d.1865). Your mark is loosely based on the English royal coat of arms and includes the English monarch's motto, "Dieu et mon droit" ("God and my right"). Marks similar to yours were used 1896-1949. Marks were sometimes copied, so it is impossible to date the piece without handling it. We have seen recent dishes with a similar old-looking mark.

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