Exceedingly Rare and Important J. YOUNG & CO. / HARRISBURG, PA Stoneware Pedestal Water Cooler

Spring 2022 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 38

Price Realized: $21,600.00

($18,000 hammer, plus 20% buyer's premium)

PLEASE NOTE:  This result is 2 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:  Greatest Hits | Spring 2022 Auction | Central PA Stoneware

Spring 2022 Auction Catalog

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Exceedingly Rare and Important Five-Gallon Stoneware Pedestal-Based Water Cooler with Profuse Cobalt Floral Decoration, Stamped "J. YOUNG & CO. / HARRISBURG, PA," circa 1856-1858, ovoid cooler with open loop handles, squared rim, circular bunghole, and attached pedestal base, lavishly-decorated at the midsection with a brushed, triple-blossomed daisy plant accented with swags. Further decorated with two triple-blossomed floral motifs at the shoulder and flanking the spout, featuring cup-shaped flowers composed of rigorous horizontal strokes. Cooler's left side decorated with a triple-blossomed plant motif in yet another style, in this case the classic "spitting tulip," a design popular in Harrisburg stoneware production for the next twenty or more years. Base decorated completely around its circumference with a series of stylized flower blossoms. Cobalt highlights to bunghole and maker's mark. Among the finest examples of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania stoneware that we have ever offered, this cooler combines exceptional form, decoration, and maker. It is one of only a few pedestal-based coolers known in Central Pennsylvania stoneware production. The specialness of the form is reinforced by its exuberant decoration, which showcases three different designs from the pottery. It was made at Harrisburg's Filbert Street Pottery by the firm John Young & Co., operated by New-York-trained potters, John Young and Shem Thomas, circa 1856-1858. Even commonly-produced forms marked by this early operation are considered scarce and desirable. Along with another cooler bearing the mark of William Moyer offered in this auction, it is the only Central Pennsylvania example of the form that we can recall selling in the last fifteen years or more. We regard it among the greatest regional stoneware discoveries of the 21st century. Provenance: Recently surfaced in the Northeastern U.S. An 8" x 3" section of pedestal base reglued on front. Minor base chipping and a 3" chip to underside of pedestal, visible only when cooler is turned over. A 2 1/2" star-shaped spider line below left handle, emanating from a surface chip. A 7 3/4" Y-shaped surface line to side of cooler, not visible on interior. Some exfoliation to base of pedestal and bottom half of cooler on reverse. Some minor surface crazing to base of cooler itself and bunghole, not visible on interior. A 1 1/2" surface flake to interior. Two very minor chips to interior of rim. A dry glaze drip to front. H 19".

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