A to Z Anthology
As the Society no longer produces newsletters, we will post occasional items of interest here.
Topics will be chosen at random.
Your contributions are welcome.
P is for Pint Pot
You know, we hope, that Maling's early success was based on the production of marmalade jars. These machine-made items were all identical. When it said 1lb on the jar, that's what the customer got. If you can do that with semi-solids, how about liquids?
Any drink served in a British pub or restaurant must come in a marked glass. Historically, the mark was in the form of a crown, the monarch's initials (e.g. VR for Victoria Regina) and a number which identifies the location of the Weights & Measures Office which had checked for accurate quantity. The number for Newcastle was 71.
Maling saw the opportunity, and a Weights & Measures officer was permanently stationed at the pottery to monitor the estimated 100,000 standard measures produced each year. The mark is impressed into the glaze. It's difficult to see, and impossible, we thought, to photograph. However, the "71" may be a clue in identifying pieces which look like Maling but aren't factory-marked.
The pint pot below is a typical Maling shape in "Eslington" pattern. The mark comes from a correspondent who had just bought a rather grubby 2 pint (or quart) pot and wanted to know more. Dirt had worked its way into the mark and - hey presto!
We'd been puzzling for ages as to how we could show that mark. Never considered that a bit of good old English muck would be the answer. Thank goodness it was photographed before it was washed!
The majority of these measuring pieces were probably plain whitewares.
Don't mistake 71 for a date!
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