Exceedingly Rare and Important Shenandoah Valley Redware Dish, attrib. Peter Bell, Hagerstown, MD, 1808

Fall 2022 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 207

Estimate: $8,000-$12,000.A Note About Estimates

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Fall 2022 Auction Catalog

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Sold!  $32,500.


Exceedingly Rare and Important Shenandoah Valley Redware Dish, Inscribed "JE / his Dish / 1808," attributed to Peter Bell, Hagerstown, MD, tapered dish with rounded rim, profusely-decorated on the interior with a central flowering daisy plant in cream and dark-brown slip, surrounded by a cream slip band with wavy brown stripe. Decoration is bordered by the highly unusual inscription "JE 1808 his Dish," interspersed with four large clusters of cream slip circles with brown-spotted interiors. Surface covered in a clear lead glaze over an orange clay ground. This significant example of early Shenandoah Valley pottery is one of the finest surviving works attributed to the early Hagerstown, MD and Winchester, VA potter, Peter Bell (1775-1854). Only two examples of pottery are known bearing Bell's impressed maker's mark, "P. BELL". However, a number of Shenandoah Valley redware objects with certain stylistic attributes, including the distinctive "grape cluster" or "fish scale" motifs like those found on this dish, carry a Peter Bell attribution. This example was attributed to Peter Bell in Alvin H. Rice and John Baer Stoudt's ground-breaking 1929 book, "The Shenandoah Pottery," and is pictured on page 266 of this reference work. Few Shenandoah Valley redware objects with such an early date of manufacture have survived, making this a particularly rare example. Its lavish decoration, size, highly unusual inscription, and provenance, all contribute to its importance. Literature: Illustrated in Rice and Stoudt, The Shenandoah Pottery, p. 266, catalog number 1968. Provenance: The Shelley Pioneer Collection of Americana, Pook & Pook, April 2007, Lot 715; George Horace Lorimer; Parke-Bernet Galleries, October 1944, Lot 361; Rice and Stoudt Collection, catalog # 1968. Wear to slip, primarily to floral design. Otherwise excellent condition with a few small rim chips and two very minor base chips. H 2 3/4" ; Diameter 14 1/2".



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