Outstanding COWDEN & WILCOX / HARRISBURG, PA Six-Gallon Stoneware Bird Jar

October 26, 2019 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 38

Price Realized: $2,596.00

($2,200 hammer, plus 18% buyer's premium)

PLEASE NOTE:  This result is 3 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.

October 26, 2019 Auction Catalog

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Outstanding Six-Gallon Stoneware Jar with Elaborate Cobalt Bird Decoration, Stamped "COWDEN & WILCOX / HARRISBURG, PA", circa 1865, large-sized, ovoid jar with tooled shoulder, semi-squared rim, and applied lug handles, decorated with a slip-trailed design of a bird with heavily-striped body and well-detailed wing and tail feathers, perched on a stylized ground. Cobalt highlights to maker's mark, capacity mark, and handle terminals. Exceptional size to the jar and decoration. The bird on this jar, featuring unusual striping throughout was undoubtedly inspired by or created by Shem Thomas, a potter employed in Harrisburg during the 1850s and 1860s. Thomas had previously worked for Lyons, NY potter, Thompson Harrington, who decorated his ware with similar stripe-decorated birds. Other Harrington designs, such as his iconic starface, were brought to Harrisburg by Thomas. This jar's stately rendering of a bird is among the largest that we have seen on an example of Central Pennsylvania stoneware, standing an impressive nine inches tall. A large, U-shaped reglued section of right side of jar, with some associated chips along crack. This damage includes a crack, which descends from it a short distance onto base. A sealed 7" crack from rim to right of bird. A small chip to left handle. Some in-the-firing dryness to surface. H 14 1/2".

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