Outstanding Chester Webster, Randolph County, NC Incised Bird Jug, c1825-35

Fall 2021 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 8

Estimate: $7,500-$10,000.  A Note About Estimates

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Fall 2021 Auction Catalog

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Sold!  $7,500. 

Fine and Very Rare Two-Gallon Stoneware Jug with Incised Bird Decoration, attributed to Chester Webster, Randolph County, NC, circa 1825-1835, thin-walled, ovoid jug with tooled shoulder, semi-squared spout molding, and grooved strap handle with triangular terminal. Front decorated with an incised design of a bird perched on a branch in the distinctive Chester Webster style, including a crest, scallop-and-stripe-decorated neck band, heavily-dashed accents to the body and branch, and stylized insects on which the bird is feeding. An impressed circle forms the bird's eye and a large "2" with scrolled tip and tick-marked interior is incised below the spout. Surface dipped in an iron slip and covered in a light salt glaze, a treatment that dates this work relatively early in Webster's career in North Carolina, possibly at Fayetteville or at the B.Y. Craven site in Randolph County. Bringing high-styled, incised motifs from his training in the Hartford, Connecticut stoneware school, Webster is responsible for producing some of the most finely-decorated examples of stoneware in the entire state. Despite a career that spanned several decades, his work is considered rare and highly-prized. Literature: Illustrated in Hewitt, Great Pots, p. 154. A thin Y-shaped crack across underside, forming an 8 1/4" crack extending up right side of jug's front. The Y-shaped crack on the underside also continues 1" and 1/2" onto base in two other places. Otherwise excellent, essentially as-made condition with remarkably no chips. H 14 3/4".

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