Ask Antique Trader: These mugs have come a long way

Q The flowers around the edge of this bowl are so delicate and none are alike. You can feel the paint when you rub your fingers across it. Can you tell me if it is hand painted? It is a very heavy bowl and is scalloped around the edge. It also has very fine crazing. The size is 8 1/2 inches by 1 3/4 inches. I would appreciate anything you can tell me about it. – S.L., Ottowa, Ill.

A This is a beautiful late Meiji period Earthenware bowl. The bowl is Japanese satsuma and dates from around circa 1900. The form of the bowl with a scalloped edge is unusual and the artwork is excellent. I would not be surprised if you could find a signature on it. Conservatively the bowl is worth around $2,400.

Q I bought these six jars at an antique mall. They measure 3 inches across the top, and are 5 3/4 inches tall. On the bottom is WT CO/A. The covers are screw-on. Do they have any age or value? – A.E., Franklin, Texas

A The jars that you purchased were manufactured by Whitall Tatum & Company, Millville, N.J., 1857-1901, makers of a huge variety of glass containers. Known among fruit jar collectors for their “Millville Atmosperic” jar, Whitall Tatum produced very large quantities of bottles and fruit jars throughout much of the mid and late 19th century. Most of the bottles that are marked “W.T.&co.” on the base generally date from about 1875 up to 1901. After the firm name was changed to “ Whitall Tatum Company” in 1901, the marking then became W.T.CO. The Armstrong Cork Corporation bought W-T in 1938 and produced millions of glass bottles and insulators with the existing molds. It appears that you have some fruit jars from the mid century period, circa 1940. Your jars were made during the Armstrong ownership. The company was taken over by Ball-Foster in 1995. Your jars continue to be collectible and should sell for approximately $15 each.

Q These two German steins have been passed down in the family without any real history attached to them. The three-handled stein does have a mark on the bottom that may be the Thewalt 3TP2 mark. Can you shed any light on their age and value? – D.S., Mansfield, Texas

A Thewalt ws founded in 1893 and is the oldest beer stein factory in Grenhausen in the Westerwaldnd region and is, today, still operating by the Thewalt family. The company offers a large variety of steins in many shapes and sizes produced by skilled craftsmen for the locals as well as for export around the world. Your steins appear to be made after 1915 and were produced for export. The craftsmanship and design is excellent and still retains the collectable value. Your steins should sell between $150-$200.


Linda Roberts has 20 years of experience in the antique community and is called upon by attorneys, private collectors, corporate institutions and antique show promoters for her expertise in the appraising field. She is the proprietor of White Orchid Antiques in Media, Pa., and is the current president of the Eastern Pennsylvania chapter of ISA, a member of the Media Business Association and a member in good standing of the Pennsylvania Antiques Dealers Association. Roberts can be reached at White Orchid Appraisals, LLC, 609 West State Street, Media, PA 19063 or at 610-304-7077.


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