Our museum is temporarily closed to support the effort to contain the spread of COVID-19. Read a message from our director, and check our website and social media for updates.

Pitcher, "Jefferson"

Pitcher, "Jefferson"

<< >>
Usage conditions apply
This transfer printed creamware pitcher is decorated with the Arms of the United States on one side and a portrait of Thomas Jefferson on the other. The portrait of Jefferson is framed in an oval medallion designed with leaves and a spiraled ribbon with the names of the first fifteen states alternating with fifteen stars. Over the portrait is the text, “We are all Republicans—all Federalists.” Underneath reads “Thomas Jefferson, President of the United States of America 1801.” The arms of the United States features a spread-winged eagle with the U.S. shield at its breast clutching arrows in one talon and a laurel branch in the other, in its beak is a scroll that reads “E PLURIBUS UNUM” while 16 stars are above its head. The pitcher touches upon the division between the Federalist Party and the Republican Party in early American and Jefferson’s attempt to reconcile the two.
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
Object Name
place made
United Kingdom: England, Liverpool
Physical Description
monochrome, black (overall surface decoration color name)
ceramic, earthenware, refined (overall material)
transfer printed (overall production method/technique)
overall: 7 3/4 in x 7 1/2 in x 5 1/4 in; 19.685 cm x 19.05 cm x 13.335 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
collector/donor number
Credit Line
Robert H. McCauley
See more items in
Cultural 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
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.


Add a comment about this object