Pitcher, "Lafayette"

Pitcher, "Lafayette"

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This creamware pitcher is decorated with a transfer print portrait of the Marquis de Lafayette on one side and a design depicting the surrender of Cornwallis on the other. The portrait of Lafayette shows him in his military uniform inside a medallion. On each side of the medallion is a female figure with rays of glory appearing under a laurel wreath above the portrait. Below the medallion is a spread-winged eagle. The design depicts the British officer General O’Hara surrendering the sword of Lord Cornwallis to American officer General Lincoln. Underneath the scene is printed “Cornwallis Resigning His Sword at York Town Oct. 19, 1781.
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
Physical Description
monochrome, black (overall surface decoration color name)
ceramic, earthenware, refined (overall material)
transfer printed (joint piece production method/technique)
overall: 4 9/16 in x 5 1/2 in x 3 11/16 in; 11.58875 cm x 13.97 cm x 9.36625 cm
ID Number
catalog number
collector/donor number
accession number
Credit Line
Robert H. McCauley
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Ceramics and Glass
Domestic Furnishings
McCauley Liverpool Pottery
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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