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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2007-11-19 16:26
Subject: [help] Identifying a century-old China pattern
Security: Public
Location:Baja Rancho Lake
Mood:curiously carved head
Music:people talking
Tags:family, help, personal, photos
I'm hoping somebody reading (or a friend of somebody reading) is a china enthusiast. Here at Baja Rancho Lake, the extensive holdings are being transgenerationally de-accessioned. We've got an 8-piece service of china of unknown provenance, which doesn't strike any of us as particularly tasteful. Here's what we know.

  • It came down the Kessler side of the family

  • It was brought over by German immigrants sometime before 1910

  • There is no maker's mark on the backs or bottoms of the pieces, though some pieces have what is apparently a discretely painted piece or article number ("6", for example)

  • You could drown the Duke of Clarence in the sugar bowl, which was apparently intended to create an entire germ-line of diabetics


We're trying to identify this service, to see if it has historic or locational significance. Any comments (or pass alongs to qualified commentors) would be very helpful.

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Stone of stumbling and rock of offense: apple lap
User: wordweaverlynn
Date: 2007-11-20 00:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:apple lap
Replacement China identification service.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Stone of stumbling and rock of offense
User: wordweaverlynn
Date: 2007-11-20 01:36 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I have a lovely plate painted by a great-great aunt who was never permitted to marry. That side of the family was middle-class at the time. I wonder what she could have done with her life if she'd ever left home. Her niece -- my paternal grandfather's sister -- was a professional artist for the Chicago Sun-Times.
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J.K.Richárd
User: neutronjockey
Date: 2007-11-20 01:37 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Two questions:
1) Are there cups with that set
2) is the approximate height of "sugarbowl" about 7.25 inches with an approximate 8" diameter (at fattest part)

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Jay Lake: graffiti-lake_chalk
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-11-20 01:51 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:graffiti-lake_chalk
Yes, there are cups with the set. It's fairly extensive, including those dentless saucers for blowing one's coffee, along with dessert plates, serving pieces, teapot, etc.

"Sugarbowl" (is it a gravy boat?) is about 2-7/8" at the mouth. Diameter at fat part is 6". It's 5" high without the lid, and 6-3/4 with the lid.
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J.K.Richárd
User: neutronjockey
Date: 2007-11-20 02:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Where abouts in Germany did the Kesslers live prior to coming to the US?
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la sirena dolce: a - take 2
User: lasirenadolce
Date: 2007-11-20 02:25 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:a - take 2
(Hey there. Adrienne here for Jay.)

The state of Baden, city of Gamburg.
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J.K.Richárd
User: neutronjockey
Date: 2007-11-20 03:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Here are my thoughts:
1) The "sugarbowl" is certainly on the large size of sugarbowls and could possibly be a grog/soup bowl. Given the mouth however it is difficult to see use with a serving ladel.
2) The sugarbowl design is distinctively Bavarian for period: and decidedly not German to period: .
3) Given the proximity of Gamburg to Frankfurt (a fairly major hub of porcelain making in the mid-late 1800s) and the imperfectly mimicked styling of the design which resembles an English Coalport of that time period: (except here we note that your pieces have gilded scrolling that is closer to riccoco and Dresden stylings used by the Höchst porcelain factory that closed down earlier in the century--- my guess is influenced stylings from Höchst porcelain ware)
4)I would say these pieces were a) "seconds" meaning experimental in nature by attempting to capture the "Coalport blue" or perhaps a set made by a porcelain maker's apprentice (hence no mark) or b) knock-offs ;)

But I'm no diningware expert so take it for what it's worth.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2007-11-25 22:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I think I forgot to say thank you very much for this excellent information You impressed my generally erudite and highly verbal relatives. Also quite illuminating info. Among other things, this thread explained more about the so-called "nun China" that is also in our family. It was painted by the nuns of a Brooklyn convent for which my step-mother's grandfather provided medical services for many years.
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J.K.Richárd
User: neutronjockey
Date: 2007-11-25 22:38 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Quite welcome.
I like a good challenge and this certainly was one. There are some things the intarwebs are great for digging up info on--- others, well, like the china set you have to do some extra careful excavation and make reasonable but loose connections.
To think that the recipe for making china was so secret, so guarded that men were willing to make incredible sacrifices ... heh. Odd world we live in.
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Sleeping Under Butterflies
User: mary919
Date: 2007-11-20 13:56 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I did some china searching just for fun last night-- didn't find it, but there does seem to have been a huge tradition of the cobalt blue w/ gilt trim and pink flowers-- you even see it in French and Japanese porcelain. Very interesting!
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