The snow is gone, spring is almost here, and it’s time to do the thrift store circuit to uncover vintage gems for Southern Vintage Table. And, what would make a great day even better? Browsing my favorite thrift stores with Jami! Little did we know we would find something really, really wonderful.
So, it was our third stop and as soon as we opened the door to the old-house-turned-thrift-store, I spied these cups on the table. Neither of us could read the mark without our glasses, but even with our blurry vision, it had that distinctive vintage look. I bought them and couldn’t wait to find out more.
Although I couldn’t find a photo or pattern name, I did discover more about the company that made them. Here’s a bit of their story.
The pottery company is Edwin J.D. Bodley from Burslem, England. Edwin was the son of Edward Fisher Bodley and originally the two worked together but later the father retired and Edwin took over. According to thepotteries.org, these are key dates for Edwin’s company:
- In 1875 the father retired and the son carried on on his own accord.
- In the 1881 census the company is recorded as having 140 employees.
- In 1892 the company was declared bankrupt.
So, using a little bit of math, this means these teacups are at least 123 years old! Holy moly! This advertisement from The Pottery Gazette, American and Canadian Edition, January 1st, 1880, also from thepotteries.org site, gives some insight into the company’s business plan. I definitely appreciate Edwin’s quest to create “fancy goods” for the American market!
My guess is these were made for the American market in the 1880s, with all their fanciness, shape and decorative style, and bought somewhere here. Who bought them, where they lived and how many cups of tea were stylishly served in them – alas – that’s all left to our own imagination. But, we do know they now reside at Southern Vintage Table for all to joyfully admire! Aren’t they fabulous?
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