Manufacturer John Bartlam

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 704

This teapot represents the entrepreneurial and intrepid spirit of eighteenth-century America. Made at the pottery established by John Bartlam in Cain Hoy, South Carolina, outside of Charleston, it was intended to compete with the popular luxury porcelains with underglaze blue decoration that were produced in England and imported to the colonies. Porcelain required specialized clays, deposits of which had only recently been discovered in the Carolinas, and were being mined and shipped to England from Charleston. Josiah Wedgwood feared that the success of the Cain Hoy enterprise would become serious competition to his stronghold in the American market, writing in a letter to Thomas Bentley in 1767, of a "Pottwork in Charles Town" that used Cherokee clay" from the Carolinas to make porcelain. This is one of only seven examples that can be associated with the Bartlam factory, all teawares, and all which feature the Palmetto, a motif not found in English porcelains, but which is a direct reference to South Carolina.

Teapot, John Bartlam (Staffordshire, England 1735–1781 Camden, South Carolina), Soft-paste porcelain with underglaze blue decoration, American

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