COLLECTION: Ceramics

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Bank

1850-1875
Origin: America, Virginia, New Market
Overall: 10 1/2 x 7 x 7in. (26.7 x 17.8 x 17.8cm)
Earthenware, red, unglazed
Acquisition funded by Mr. & Mrs. William Murdoch, Jr.
Acc. No. 1975.900.11
A bank whimsically modeled in the form of a potter's kiln, including a working door from which coins can be removed. On the kiln roof, a small boy kneels to peer into the coin slot; above him is a twisting, flowering vine on which birds perch.
Label:German-born John Schweinfurt established a pottery in 1850 at New Market, Virginia, where he produced earthenware vessels, toys, pipes, and inkwells. This bank is one of his more unusual and ambitious creations. Fashioned in the form of a potter's kiln, it features a male figure kneeling by the coin slot on the roof and, below, a working door from which coins can be removed. Topping the kiln proper is an arbor of flowering plants and perching birds.

He was one of the lesser known yet significant potters of the lower Shenandoah Valley. A native of Germany, he emigrated to Pennsylvania at an early age; by mid century, he was producing earthenware at New Market, Virginia, where he remained for the rest of his life.
Provenance:Henry I. Tusing, New Market, Virginia.