Face jug

about 1860
Unknown African-American, Made at Thomas Davies Pottery

Object Place: Edgefield District, South Carolina


Overall: 14.3 x 11.7 x 12.1 cm (5 5/8 x 4 5/8 x 4 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Stoneware, alkaline (ash) glaze; kaolin clay inserts

On View

Link between: Folk Art, and Gothic Revival (237.1)





Face vessel with spout at top. Eyes and teeth made from white kaolin set in earthenware body, and covered with the same alkaline glaze as the body. Broad nose with wide-set eyes. Greenish glaze.


By 1926, collection of George S. McKearin (1). At unknown date, sold by McKearin to D. S. Clark, a dealer; 1952, sold by Clark to collectors Harry and Dorothy Frey (Terre Haute, Indiana) for $65.00; at unknown date, sold by Freys to Jayne Blaske for $150.00; September 17, 1983, sold at Skinner Auction, sale of the Edmund & Jayne Blaske Collection, lot #506, purchased by Tony L. Shank (Marion, S.C.); June 8, 1997, sold by Shank to John Axelrod, Boston; 2011, sold by Axelrod to the MFA. (Accession date: June 22, 2011).

1. Illustrated in John Spargo, Early American Pottery and China (New York: The Century Co., 1926), plate 61.

Credit Line

The John Axelrod Collection—Frank B. Bemis Fund, Charles H. Bayley Fund, and The Heritage Fund for a Diverse Collection