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Here is a great YouTube video with history and current information by our friend and Wedgwood Museum Director, Gaye Blake-Roberts. Enjoy



Opening a brand new book that still smells of ink is such a sublime experience, almost as good as that musty smell of an old book reminding us of its history!

Check out our newly listed items on the WEBSITE where things are always changing. AT ALEXIS ANTIQUES ANNEX WE'VE ADDED MORE NON-WEDGWOOD ENGLISH CERAMICS, TO INCLUDE SOME ABSOUTELY ADORABLE ADAMS Titian Ware VERNACULAR HAND PAINTED PLATES. CHECK THEM OUT! We've added lots of new jasperware too, blue and green AND some excellent black basalt wares!



Friday, February 25, 2011


My charming friend Tony in Scotland lives very close to Glen Roy, "I live right at the entrance to the glen and this is my 'backyard.'"
What a lucky guy he is! I can see him sipping tea with a Wedgwood book on his lap in front of the fire with a big window behind him sporting this beautiful view!
Click the title of this post to learn about Darwin's visit to and study of the area and its geologically interesting landforms. Tony says there is additional interesting information on the subject on Wikipedia under Glen Roy. We Wedgwoodians seem to have a far-reaching spectrum of interests haven't we? For me, that's the greater part of Wedgwood's charm ~ the huge variety of pots, people, places, perplexities and pleasures we can stumble upon in the study of our favorite pots! Thanks again Tony, a true renaissance man, one with many interests and talents. We'll end with today's treat, his description of the mundane chore of dusting, "turning the dust over onto a clean side" - he makes the chore actually sound fun!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Ever take the Tube around London? You can't help but see the classic British humor on the advertising signs around the top of the interior sides of the buses. In an early morning sales email from Waterford Wedgwood Royal Doulton, this image popped up at me! I immediately recognized that certain, je ne sais quoi, smile on a young British ad agency bloke's face as he put the final touches on this image for their email ad campaign. Maybe it's an in-house ad person doing the graphics for their sales campaigns, doesn't matter, it's classic British understatement. ENJOY!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Wedgwood Peerage & Trains Redux

Please scroll down to older posts and reread the Wedgwood Peerage & Trains post if you are interested in this subject, our friend in Scotland has sent more photos which have been added to illustrate the story of the train 'Sir Ralph Wedgwood' for your viewing pleasure. Anyone out there ever ridden one of these two Wedgwood trains?


If you own Mike Herman's great Wedgwood book Wedgwood Jasper Ware, A Shape Book and Collectors Guide, check out the Liqueur Bottle, maybe known as a decanter or flask, on page 10. If you click the title of this post you'll find an article with all sorts of historic information about Humphrey Taylor & Co. from the Chelsea Society Magazine dated May 2010. The premises were in the news on Feb 19 2011 as they have been bought for £12.3 million cash! The buyers are Nigella Lawson, culinary goddess, i.e. TV cook, and her husband Charles Saachi, advertising millionaire and art collector. This information and the article were sent to me by my friend in Scotland, Lord Pulford, THANKS Tony! Tony owns a similar flask which he recently rescued from a storage bin where he forgot he had put it, cleaned it up and did the research. Just the way it's supposed to be done Tony! It's always so nice when one shares his research with the rest of us. Tony's flask is a bit of a different shape from the one in Mike's book, but the mark is the same. The flask in the book is dated c1910 and should now be in Birmingham as it was in the Buten Collection. Tony's liqueur bottle is now on display with the rest of his lovely Wedgwood collection.  Today, July 2, 2012, I am adding one just like this, albeit with no lid to our inventory.  It's in gorgeous condition, I'm thinking a glass/crystal decanter stopper would be lovely in it if one doesn't have the correct stopper available.  See and if it's no longer on our NEWLY LISTED ITEMS section, just put wwrg220-198 in the browser box.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Charles Darwin image from American Heritage Archives

With all the recent publicity on all things Darwin, I somehow missed a real treat. Click the title of this post to discover a great website, by and about the beautiful Emma Darwin, a young mother, successful author, and great great grand-daughter of Charles & Emma Wedgwood Darwin. She is a beautiful girl, and her story and stories are worth investigating. Her two historical novels sound thrilling, I think I'll check them both out. It's a very well done website cum blog so I think a lot of us Wedgwoodians will enjoy it! The caption that goes with this photo found at American Heritage Archives reads: "'He is the most transparent man I ever saw,' said Emma Wedgwood of the cousin she was to marry. Water colors painted in 1840 by the popular portraitist George Richmond show how alike Emma and Charles were in looks. Their similarity in temperament made their marriage a most happy one." Credit: Courtesy of George P. Darwin and the Royal College of Surgeons.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Happy birthday, February 12, to Charles Darwin. It seems that the interest in all things Charles Darwin hasn't waned since its peak in 2009, the occasion of his two hundredth birthday. Click this post title to see an article of yesterday, the anniversary of his birth. The story of the Wedgwoods and Darwins is an interesting one from so many viewpoints. And also of interest is the passion with which the subject is being examined and reexamined in our time.

Friday, February 11, 2011

WEDGWOOD past CEO Sir Arthur Bryan dies today

The news just arrived that Sir Arthur Bryan, former head of Josiah Wedgwood & Sons, has died in England today. More information will be posted when it becomes available. May he rest in peace. 2/15 - please click the title of this post for an article about Sir Arthur's death.
3/19 - Here is yet another article about Sir Bryan's funeral.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Here follows a book review from a crumbling, yellowed newspaper article from ‘The Staffordshire Sentinel’ dated March 30, 1926 [the book was published in 1925] which was found by me in an old Wedgwood-related book. The typeface is very small, requiring some reading, especially in the fold-lines, by magnifier! I always love it when my passions for Wedgwood and genealogy collide!

“Wedgwood Pedigrees. Being an account of the complete family reconstructed from contemporary records. By the Right Hon. Josiah C. Wedgwood and Joshua G. E. Wedgwood, is published by Titus Wilson, 21s. net. The “Times” Literary Supplement gives the following delightful review of the book:

No man is entirely individual. He is the product of his line through past ages. Much of his character is born of incident in some past century to some perhaps forgotten forebear. Environment may modify or develop, but it does not replace in one or two generations the characteristics of ancestry, and much in the behaviour of the living may be explained by a history of the dead. Thus genealogy has a special importance quite apart from the natural pride in illustrious descent. And undertaken in the proper spirit the construction of a family pedigree may be accounted a virtue and a public service. In the United States much progress has been made in scientific genealogical research; and apart from those who endeavour to link themselves with the great ones of the past there are many who have spent much time and money in the preparation of pedigrees both honest and accurate. England has lagged behind in recent years but in this volume of Wedgwood pedigrees there is proof that some at least have both the skill and the patience to undertake such work.

The authors’ task has been simplified by the relative rarity of the name. There is only one Wedgwood in England, and it is a fairly safe presumption that all bearing the name of Wedgwood came from the farm of Wedgwood, near Tunstall. Thus the search was narrowed in its earliest stages to an examination of all records which dealt with Wedgwood and the surrounding area of country. The farm was one of the frank-pledges of the Manor of Tunstall held after the Conquest by the Audleys. The first Wedgwood known to history was, as the authors note with some glee, a rebel, one Richard, who was given a safe conduct to come to the King’s Court in June 1266. But his fate is covered by the mists of the past.

When first the authors began their researches into the family history they relied in the main on the Tunstall Court records, and with some aid from other documents constructed a skeleton pedigree of Wedgwoods from 1299 to 1589. The references to the family were not many, and all were short. Much had to be presumed, and there was no definite proof that the persons in the pedigree had been linked correctly until at a recent date the Horton Court Rolls were discovered and gave evidence that the deductions had been correct. At first it was a family of small but respectable farmers-despite one or two murderers, who appear to break the monotony. As the years passed so did the circumstances of one branch, that of Heracles, improve, until in the sixteenth century it rose to the squirearchy, coat armour, and a place in the county. Marriages helped, but some credit must be given to the character of the race. The Heracles branch ended in the male line in 1757, and their wealth left the family.

But by this time another branch of the family was well on the road to fame. In the seventeenth century Wedgwoods had settled in Burslem, and about 1650 Thomas of that name began operations as a potter. Josiah Wedgwood, whose name is now a household word, was a descendant of this Thomas, and in 1767 he settled at Etruria, where he built the still famous works. He was a man of strong opinions, a Radical Dissenter, and a believer in Parliamentary reform. His character survives, according to the authors, in the family today. They say:-

“Wedgwoods do not mix. They are not happy talking to outsiders-not superior, but shy with the shyness of men who have a complete world of their own...Seven generations brought up upon Miss Austen and Macaulay cannot acclimatize themselves to the sort of people who know whether pheasants do or do not eat mangle wurzels and are aware that the Grand National is not a flat race. They never made a bet in their lives, not because they would not have done so with pleasure if it would have broken down the barrier between themselves and mankind, but because they did not know how the operation was performed. If a Wedgwood or a Darwin ever got drunk, it must have been in the pursuit either of scientific knowledge or of an illusive camaraderie with those who really liked that sort of thing.”

A pleasant picture is given of the relations between masters and men of the Wedgwood’s high conception of an employer’s responsibility. “Paternal” care was carried, one might think, a little far on occasion. “After the midday meal was over, or in the evenings, my father read aloud to the ‘hands’-read Macaulay and Mill. ‘Hands’ that will stand that will stand most things.” But that affection of high order exists between the Wedgwoods and their employees is obvious.

One Wedgwood of this line died a Guards Colonel, and, as an ensign in the Scots Fusilier Guards, was with his company in Hougomont throughout the day at Waterloo. Another Wedgwood (Josiah 1768-1843) paid an annuity to Samuel Taylor Coleridge. A branch of the family emigrated to America in 1630 and descendants still exist, as the long lists given in the book prove. Other branches settled in Warwickshire, Cumberland and Yorkshire. All these are included in the authors’ task. Their work has been well done. Few family genealogies have been constructed with such care rendered to history. There are 120 pages of indices containing sufficient material to permit of the reader testing for himself the accuracy of the authors’ deductions."

We love sharing Wedgwood family information knowing there are MANY Wedgwood descendants around the globe. Hopefully in our musings sometimes we might find a snippet that not all the family members know. Watch for another article soon from a member of the "American branch" of the Wedgwood family. And be sure to browse our book category on the website, we have some Wedgwood family history books for sale. Click the title of this post to see a spectacular old leatherbound volume of one family history, and from there you can click the category name to see all our books.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


The 56th annual Wedgwood Seminar, sponsored by Wedgwood International Seminar, will take place this year in Chicago. For all the details please click the title of this post for the Press Release just out today. The Seminars are a great way to network with other collectors, dealers and experts, always in the midst of a beautiful venue adding to the overal enjoyment of the experience.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


The Wedgwood Queen's Ware dinner and dessert service for Catherine the Great of Russia is a popular subject of study for many Wedgwood collectors around the world. From one of our Wedgwood friends comes this wonderful photo of the
Chesme Chapel
, thanks so much Kay for sharing this lovely image! Click this blog post title to see a couple of Frog Service items we have in stock at present.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


A Wedgwood Valentine from Alexis Antiques
(Click the title of this post to go to some heart shaped inventory which might work as a gift for YOUR Valentine!)

Eldred Hubbard lived from 1856 until his death, with his wife, on the Lusitania in 1915. If you do not know anything about this prolific writer, entrepreneur, publisher, editor and philosopher, or his Roycrofter Corporation, you might want to Google his name or go to for some background information.

Among the vast output of this company’s volumes were 182 booklets called “Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great” written over a period of 14 years. Inspirational stories of successful people, they include such categories as philosophers, scientists and artists. They were later issued in a set of Memorial Editions, hardbound books encompassing all individual “Little Journey” booklets in a given category. In a 1924 ad in another publication, “The Mentor”, we find that the Memorial Editions, originally published in 1916, were being sold as a set, and in fact I have recently seen a full set for sale here in St. Louis. The hardbound compilations were a memorial to Hubbard “…to bring together in one beautiful set those unforgettable gems, recognized as Hubbard’s masterpieces, that take us among the men and women of shining achievement in many fields.”

And what has this to do with Valentines? One of the “Little Journeys to Homes of Great Lovers” is a factual but na├»ve in style overview of the great love between Josiah & Sarah Wedgwood. The memorial edition combines 12 love stories published in 1906. Among them another that might interest Wedgwoodians is that of Lord Nelson and Lady Hamilton. Tender stories in a simple and forthright, if a bit flowery, style give us insight into the romantic side of these famous people. The 1906 “Little Journeys” are paperback pamphlets, simple brown paper but most pages embellished with stylistic arts & crafts designs. We are also in possession of another copy of the single “Little Journeys” printed on a gray cardstock and very similar, minus some ads in the brown one, but there is no date or other publication or “reprint” information. The memorial edition (hardbound book) has tipped in a print of a line drawing of Josiah – interesting that this is their love story and Sally’s image is absent! To quote Mr. Hubbard regarding Josiah & Sally, in his introduction to the Volume VIII Great Lovers, “Here is a love so great that in its beneficent results we are all yet partakers.” (1916 and still true today!)

Our Valentine to you from Josiah (written to his friend Lord Gower after Josiah & Sarah had been married for 22 years):

I never had a great plan that I did not submit to my wife. She knew all the details of the business, and it was her love for the beautiful that first prompted and inspired me to take up Grecian and Roman Art, and in degree, reproduce the Classic for the world. I worked for her approval, and without her high faith in me I realize that my physical misfortunes would have overcome my will, and failure would have been written large where England has carved the word Success.

Above is the leatherbound cover of the Memorial Edition of 1916 containing all 12 of the "Great Lovers" essays.