Fort Ticonderoga recently acquired a unique ceramic pitcher, which is decorated with printed designs and text. The text includes a quote from Thomas Jefferson, from his first inaugural address. The pitcher was made in the 1810s in the Staffordshire Potteries, in England.
Due in part to the availability of clay, salt, lead and coal, potteries around Staffordshire formed a center of ceramic production in the early 1600s. By the late 1700s, North Staffordshire was the largest producer of ceramics in Britain. In the 19th century Staffordshire pottery was widely distributed around the world.
Though made in England, it reveals the value of goods made for the American market to the British economy. Printed designs such as an American eagle adorn the preserved piece of history. An American officer also stands in a bountiful landscape, framed by images that reflect the pillars of the American economy in this period: farming and trade.
This newly acquired pitcher will be on display beginning in May 2020, as part of Fort Ticonderoga’s new exhibit A Well Regulated Militia: Citizen, Soldier, and State. The exhibit will explore the unique reliance on citizen soldiers that developed in North America from the early 17th century through the early 19th century. In addition to the pitcher, the exhibit will display some of the most important objects from the Fort Ticonderoga collection, as well as new acquisitions and artifacts that have never been on display before.
Fort Ticonderoga holds one of North America’s premier collections of 18th-century military material and cultural artifacts.
Photo of 1810s Staffordshire Pitcher provided by Fort Ticonderoga.