Exceptional P. H. Smith, Akron, Ohio Stoneware Jar w/ Mermaid Decoration

Summer 2020 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 80

Price Realized: $6,000.00

($5,000 hammer, plus 20% buyer's premium)

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Auction Highlight:  Summer 2020 Auction | Ohio & Midwest

Summer 2020 Auction Catalog

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Exceptional Six-Gallon Stoneware Crock with Cobalt Mermaid Decoration, Inscribed "P.H. Smith" and "Lewis Smith," Akron, OH origin, circa 1860, cylindrical crock with tooled shoulder, semi-rounded rim, and applied lug handles, decorated with a large slip-trailed design of a mermaid with detailed scales, fins, and flowing hair with crown. Inscribed above in cobalt with the name of the potter, "P.H. Smith", along with a script "6", underscored by stripes. Additionally inscribed at the base with a second name, possibly that of Smith's son, Lewis, underscored by dashes. Impressed "6" on reverse. Outstanding figural decoration with strong folk art appeal. One theory on this design suggests that Smith was creating a political cartoon of sorts by combining his well-known fish designs with the head of Queen Victoria of England, as the face and crown on the mermaid are reminiscent of the reigning English queen of the period. Restoration to in-the-firing fry to decoration, most prominent on tail. A 2 1/2" crack on underside, continuing 6 1/2" up side of crock to left of decoration. An 8" crack descending from a small rim chip on reverse. A sealed 4" hairline from rim on reverse. H 14 1/8".

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