Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Bull in a China ShopQ: This little pitcher was left in a house I bought seven years ago. I use it as a container for some of my odd-shaped spoons. We've decided to sell our house and its contents and I'm wondering if this pitcher is valuable. I read that if the word "England" is not in the mark, the item was made before 1890, which makes this pitcher about 120 years old. Naturally, the pitcher that stood on my counter for seven years was suddenly wrapped carefully and put in a box to keep it from getting damaged. It has a little chip on the base. Is it valuable?

A: The McKinley Tariff Act of 1891 mandated that china and some other goods imported to the U.S. had to be marked with the country of origin. The maker could use a paper label or include the country in the mark. Several members of the Meakins family made pottery. James and George Meakin built the Eagle Pottery in Hanley in 1859. Another brother, Charles, founded Eastwood Pottery in Hanley in 1883. It became part of J. & G. Meakin in 1888 and the company name became J. & G. Meakin Ltd. in 1890. Earthenware was made at the Eastwood Works until 1959 and at Eagle Pottery until c.1980. The company became part of the Wedgwood Group in 1970. Pottery was sold under the Trade Name "Bull in a China Shop" beginning in 1980. Production ceased by 2000. Since your pitcher includes "Eastwood" in the mark but not "England," it was probably made between 1888 and 1891. The piece is useful but not decorative and is not rare. The chip lowers the value to under $25.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There are a lot of little green, blue, and amber Lalique Frogs hoping around E-Bay these days. These are crystal but do not have a frosted look. Regarding this article, these are all signed 'Lalique R', lacking their country of origin, France. They are in Lalique boxes. However, those boxes are stamped "Lalique, Paris". I understand that a deal was made several years ago for an off price retailer to carry these however they were rejected prior to delivery. My guess is that we have these frogs jumping between E-Bay sellers due to the McKinley Tariff Act of 1891 since the country of origin is not noted on these Lalique Frogs. The Lalique Frogs through their licensed retailers and Lalique Botiques are signed 'Lalique R France' and are frosted. They sell for a lot more. "Grade A" I guess if you like frog legs.