26 November 2014

'A Platter large enough for the biggest holiday bird'

Filigree border, turkey centre, pattern number 2/552
The title of this post is from the 1965 Copeland & Thompson US catalogue which featured wares for Thanksgiving. Here's a page from this Spode catalogue for a magnificent design for Thanksgiving. The pattern is transfer printed (known as transferware in the US) and then hand coloured and has pattern number 2/5526. The pattern was first introduced in 1905 but as can be seen from the date of the catalogue still popular many years later. The border of the pattern is taken from an antique Spode pattern called Filigree and this was introduced in about 1823. Note the 'US English' spellings; and the different sizes of dish, referred to as a platter in the US. A 22 inch dish holding a roast turkey would have looked magnificent.

Pink or Blue Tower turkey pattern
You could though have your turkey served on different but similar designs from Spode. Tower border was often used around different centres including the engraving of the turkey. Tower was introduced in about 1814 initially on blue and later a flow blue and a pink. The later two colours were particularly popular in North America and in Germany. In the 1965 catalogue you can see that the Tower design was offered in both the pink and the blue. The patterns were printed from hand-engraved copper plates through the medium of special potters' tissue paper. This method of decoration meant that popular border designs such as Tower were often combined with other centres rather than that from the original design and this led to many different patterns being created. Tower, for example, was still being produced and adapted right up to the closure of Spode in 2009.
Turkey sets in brown
If brown tableware was more your thing then the turkey dish was offered in that colour in another design and like the other services accompanied by plates, with the matching border, with 'assorted game bird centres'. 'Tea Cups and Saucers' were also available in this pattern. This brown set has a border from a pattern called British Flowers first recorded in about 1831.

This 1965 catalogue, in black and white, was produced for the American market but the pottery was, of course, made at the famous Spode factory in Stoke-on-Trent, UK whilst it was still under the Copeland family's ownership. The company was acquired by Carborundum Group the following year but still kept the Copeland name and the Spode brand until 1970. That year the Spode brand was retained but strengthened with the renaming of the company to Spode.