Collections › MESDA Collection › Pitcher

Pitcher

Artist/Maker:
Mitchell & Tyler __Retailer ||Krider, Peter L. __Manufacturer
Place Made:
Retailed in Richmond, Virginia Philadelphia Pennsylvania
Date Made:
1848-1850
Medium:
silver
Dimensions:
HOA: 18-1/2″; WOA: 9-1/8″ (from handle to spout)
Accession Number:
5654
Description:
DESCRIPTION: Large silver pitcher in ewer form with repousse ornamentation consisting of C-scrolls, shells, flowers, fish scales, and rings and swags (or portholes and waterfalls). The the handle, which rises above the rim and re-attaches at the shoulder, is cast in the shape of a vine with moss, leaves, and tendrils decoration. The spout is wide and flared and narrows to a tall neck that is attached to the pitcher body. Engraved cattails dangle on the spout below the rim, which features an applied double band. The neck displays repousse flowers, C-scrolls, and leaves with petals that conceal the solder joint between the spout/neck and body. The pitcher body sits atop a tall applied flared pedestal with a cuff of petals and a round, stepped base with repousse flowers, C-scrolls, and leaves.

INSCRIPTION: Engraved in script lettering “H.C. Coleman. / From her Father / Elliotte Dejarnette” in the cartouche located on the side of the body opposite the handle for Huldah C, DeJarnette Coleman (1827-1887).

MARK: Struck three times with an incuse “MITCHELL & TYLER” mark, twice on underside of the base and once again very faintly on the underside of the body, as well as manufacturer’s marks for Peter L. Krider on the underside of the body: “*K*” and “PURE COIN” incuse marks.

MAKER: The partnership of Mitchell & Tyler was formed in Richmond, Virginia in October 1845 between Vermont-born Samuel Phillips Mitchell (1815-1866) and Connecticut-born John Henry Tyler (1809-1833). Both men in apprenticed in Richmond under
Massachusetts-born William Mitchell Jr. (1797-1852), who was Samuel Phillips Mitchell’s older brother, and the partnership purchased the master’s business. William Mitchell Jr. and then Mitchell & Tyler operated one of the largest silverware and jewelry businesses in Richmond with many of the city’s watchmakers and jewelers working in their shops and significant silver hollowares being supplied by large American silver manufacturers in the North. The firm of Mitchell & Tyler advertised often throughout Virginia and as the Civil War approached increased their market in military goods such as swords, guns, epaulettes, buttons, sashes, and other uniform trimmings. Mitchell & Tyler remained in operation throughout the war but dissolved in 1866 due to Mitchell’s poor health. See Catherine B. Hollan, “Virginia Silversmiths, Jewelers, Watch- and Clockmakers, 1607-1860: Their Lives and Marks” (McLean, VA: Hollan Press, 2010).

Peter L. Krider (1821-1895) was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and began his apprenticeship in 1835 under silversmith John Curry (b.c.1798-1868). He finished his apprenticeship with the firm of Robert & William Wilson (in partnership 1825-1846). About 1842 Krider moved to Boston where he worked as a journeyman with Obadiah Rich (1809-1888) and returned to Philadelphia in 1846 to serve as the R & W Wilson shop foreman. Krider first appears under his own name as Krider & Co. in the 1851 Philadelphia city directory. His firm would become one of the city’s most important in the second half of the nineteenth century. Krider specialized in beakers, and partnered with retailers throughout the United States, but also made holloware for prominent local and regional retailers. From 1859 to 1870 he partnered with John W. Biddle (1835-1916) under the business name Krider & Biddle. See Catherine B. Hollan, “Philadelphia Silversmiths and Related Artisans to 1861” (McLean, VA: Hollan Press, 2013).

FORM: Silver pitchers in Colonial America were most often small cream pitchers in the rococo fashion that were used as part of the tea ceremony to serve milk. Large wide-mouthed pitchers in the neoclassical and empire styles became popular after the American Revolution. Such pitchers were used to serve water or wine and provided silversmiths with abundant flat surface area for engraving everything from simple monograms to armorials to lengthy presentations. The term “pitcher” is most commonly used in the United States and can be applied to any container with a spout for pouring liquids. In other English-speaking countries, the term “jug” is use more prevalently. A “ewer” is a vase-shaped, handled pitcher, often decorated, with a base and flaring spout.

History:
Huldah Coleman DeJarnette (1827-1887) was the daughter of Elliott Hawes DeJarnette Sr. (1788-1857) and Elizabeth B. Coleman (1788-1863) of Pine Forest Plantation in Spotsylvania Co., Virginia. In November1848 Huldah DeJarnette married Rev. James D. Coleman (1811-1878) of Concord Plantation in Caroline County. She died in 1887 and is buried in the Concord Plantation Cemetery.
Credit Line:
Gift of Mr. Henry H. Massey, Jr. and Mr. Charles D. Massey