Stoneware Jar w/ Exceptional Incised Ship, probably Middlesex County, NJ

March 24, 2018 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 295

Price Realized: $5,605.00

($4,750 hammer, plus 18% buyer's premium)

PLEASE NOTE:  This result is 5 years old, and the American ceramics market frequently changes. Additionally, small nuances of color, condition, shape, etc. can mean huge differences in price. If you're interested in having us sell a similar item for you, please contact us here.

Auction Highlight:  March 24, 2018 Auction | New Jersey Stoneware | Incised Stoneware

March 24, 2018 Auction Catalog

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Outstanding Three-Gallon Stoneware Jar with Large Incised Sailing Ship Decoration, probably Middlesex County, NJ origin, circa 1820's, highly-ovoid jar with tooled shoulder, an applied lug handle, and a narrow opening with inner rim designed to hold a lid, the front decorated with an incised and cobalt-highlighted design of a sailing ship. Excellent detail to decoration including two waving banners, a captain's quarters with windows at the stern, and deeply-carved vertical lines to the ship's four sails. Brushed cobalt highlights to handle terminals. The form of this jar is very similar to that seen on stoneware produced in Old Bridge, NJ during this time period, by the Bissett family and Morgan & Van Wickle. Meanwhile, this particular incised ship motif seems very related to that seen on the cover image of the exhibition program for New Jersey Pottery to 1840, held at the New Jersey State Museum in 1972. The jug pictured there was acquired by pioneer NJ stoneware researcher, James Brown, who scoured the area looking for work from the various local potters. Of note is this ship's similarity, as well, to the iconic John P. Schermerhorn incised ship jar, pictured in Russ and Schermerhorn, "Rocketts' Red Glare: John P. Schermerhorn and the Early Richmond-Area Stoneware Industry" in Ceramics in America 2005; Schermerhorn was a member of the extended Bissett family and worked in Old Bridge before departing for Virginia. Our belief is that this example was produced either in Old Bridge or by the Price family in nearby Sayreville. One of the largest and most-detailed incised ship designs we have ever offered. One handle lost during the firing, with some salt glazing covering the absent space of the handle. L-shaped crack from rim on reverse, measuring approximately 7". A chip to front of rim, a shallow chip to top of rim, and a minor nick to reverse. An in-the-firing contact mark to front below ship. A small base chip. H 14 1/2".

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