Pitcher, "The Joiners Arms"

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This transfer printed creamware pitcher is decorated with a print of the Joiners' Arms on one side and a motif of "Washington's Tomb" on the other. The crest of “The Joiner’s Arms” features the motto “Join truth with trust,” a shield, and tools of the joiner’s or carpenter’s trade. The motif of Washington’s tomb depicts a monument commemorating Washington’s death surrounded by a chain of states which omits Vermont and Rhode Island, but includes Kentucky. The monument is an obelisk decorated with the All Seeing Eye and the phrase “First in war, first in peace, first in fame, first in virtue.” Various figures are shown mourning at the monument. Under the spout, included in a medallion, is the phrase “May America never want artillery to defend her rights,” a phrase wishing peace upon the new American republic. Below that is the name “Simeon Hall” and a flower. It is currently unclear who Simeon Hall is. George Washington is the most common figure depicted on English creamware pitchers of this period. His death in 1799 led to an outpouring of commemorative products celebrating his life and mourning his death. Robert H. McCauley purchased this pitcher from F.O. Bailey Co. of Portland, ME on May 3, 1939 for $37.50.
This pitcher is part of the McCauley collection of American themed transfer print pottery. There is no mark on the pitcher to tell us who made it, but it is characteristic of wares made in large volume for the American market in both Staffordshire and Liverpool between 1790 and 1820. Pitchers of this shape, with a cream colored glaze over a pale earthenware clay, known as Liverpool type, were the most common vessels to feature transfer prints with subjects commemorating events and significant figures in the early decades of United States’ history. Notwithstanding the tense relationship between Britain and America, Liverpool and Staffordshire printers and potters seized the commercial opportunity offered them in the production of transfer printed earthenwares celebrating the heroes, the military victories, and the virtues of the young republic, and frequently all of these things at once.
Currently not on view
date made
ca 1805
place made
United Kingdom: England, Liverpool
Physical Description
black (overall color)
monochrome, black (overall surface decoration color name)
ceramic, earthenware, refined (overall material)
transfer printed (joint piece production method/technique)
overall: 10 1/8 in x 9 3/4 in x 6 1/2 in; 25.7175 cm x 24.765 cm x 16.51 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
collector/donor number
Credit Line
Robert H. McCauley
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Ceramics and Glass
Domestic Furnishings
McCauley Liverpool Pottery
Government, Politics, and Reform
American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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