Wednesday, August 26, 2009

My Granny’s Teapot

Families have  there share of “unique” personalities, my maternal grandmother: Granny Jamison,  was (in a good way) in a class of her own.  Tea was omnipresent in her home, from pre-breakfast to a “Cup before bed.”
A few items have migrated from her to me, and now reside in So. Cal.  This is the only teapot  that passed from; Gran to my Mom then to me. 
Old is relative, but age and survival is to be appreciated. The pot is about 80 years old. This Stylized teapot is a memory conduit the equivalent of a: Wormhole .. a direct short cut through time. 
The Cottage pot,   I never saw it used, only a display item.  As a “wee boy” an object to viewed and never touched!  I know that it was a gift from my mother’s eldest sister (aunt Mary) to her mom (my Gran).  As I got older, but still visited for summer holidays, I got the sense my Granny didn't really like the teapot, not one for decorative items, “A guid practical pot is wit ye need, no too big mind ye. Too big and folks’ll sty too long”
As a teapot, my affection is limited to the family connection and am glad to have only one example .. I only wish Gran had been a collector of YiXing and Pu-erh.
Today it resides in our dinning room display cabinet. I can't help but think the colours might just be a legacy influence left by Clarice Cliff.  Much brighter than those (same subject) by James Sadler.
As we are on the south side of August and summer sunsets are at their most enjoyable ..
sun1 Time for some late afternoon Indian tea, milk to taste. (cream if you can get to the milk bottle first, gone are those days) And the tea no longer is kept in a locked caddie.
With old pottery, especially if seldom used, you need to be a tad careful and “ease” it into play …  So after nursing the old pot along I now feel we can brew some tea.  This is more a nostalgia trip than experiencing tea for tea’s sake.  Assam tea, home baked banana nut bread .. again life is good.
I found a matching Sugar Bowl (sold) on eBay
matching sugar jug
Markings and back stamp:
DSC00319e MADE IN ENGLAND, incised in the base. Shakespeare's England .. Ann Hathaway's Cottage .. Lingard Webster & Co Ltd.  stamp.
Teapot Manufacturer info: (web based)  Lingard Webster: 1900-1972  Previously: Colclough & Lingard (1887-1900)  Earthenware manufacturer at the Swan Pottery, Keile Street, Tunstall. 
They produced tea ware pottery and made their name with 'poor-mans-Crown Derby' being an Amari pattern pottery which was exported all over the world and were very successful until the beginning of the second world war (1939) after which it had to compete with many other companies and eventually went out of business when the pottery was pulled down to make way for a new roundabout road scheme in the centre of Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent.
Originally promoting themselves as "The Teapot Specialists of England Since 1867", they were noted for producing everyday
tea service products and associated teawares. The Company made many fine novelty teapots in the period 1935-1955.
After the 1950s the firm ceased production of its novelty teapot range and concentrated on teapot wares, making normal type teapots.
Clarice Cliff was born in 1899 to a working-class family in Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent, in Staffordshire, the heart of Britain’s pottery belt. Like many others of her station in life, she dropped out of school at age 13 to enter the workforce and help with the family finances. In 1912, she took an entry-level position at Lingard, Webster & Co. in Tunstall, earning one shilling per week. It was there, as an enameling apprentice, that Cliff learned how to draw freehand onto blank pottery, the first step toward becoming a designer


Anonymous said...

We have a little teapot just like this - it was my husband's grandmothers We don't use it much, but it is a very sweet reminder of her.

謏 約翰 said...

This stuff was popular between the wars, to help brighten things up. Now popular with tourist. john

Jason Witt said...

I'm touched by this little history lesson. Shakespeare's England? How quaint. And "Made in England?" You don't see much of that anymore. I think this is one of the few ornamental teapots I've seen lately I wouldn't mind owning. --Spirituality of Tea

謏 約翰 said...

Jason, lost of internet sales sites with this type of teaware .. happy hunting.. john

Robin said...

Thanks for the addition to the McMunn family lore, the kids are lucky to have these long ago stories saved in time.

Anonymous said...

My name is mandy. I have a full set of 4 items of Ann Hathaways cottage design. If anyone has any details of this set, I would be pleased to hear from you. Regards. Mandy

Anonymous said...

i am a owner of this teapot and would like to sell it is anyone interested to buy price to be negotiable...monika