Sunday, January 3, 2010

Potter W.J. Stewart Jug out of grasp

Mary and I left the house late this morning in anticipation of bringing home a two-gallon jug made by William J. Stewart, the potter who made a living on our land back in the late 1800s. I found an auction at C&A Antique Auction in the nearby town of Ramseur today that listed the jug, along with a host of other pots from some potters of the past.

We found the auction house and slipped inside to view the pot. It was a rustic old jug, not pretty, but I liked the thick handle, and I've been looking for a pot made by Stewart for years. I was excited. We agreed on a maximum price we'd bid up to, then sat down to watch the bidding of porcelain signs, furniture, lamps, guns and other stuff.

They finally got around to the pots around 2:15. They placed several pieces up front, including the Stewart pot, then chose an old E.S. Yow & Jordan one gallon jug to start the pottery bidding.

"ABLIDDY-DAH-DO I HEAR $10,000...."

Mary and I looked at each other with raised eyebrows.

"Oh my god."

The Yow jug sold for $7,500. My hopes weren't dashed, but my expectations were substantially lowered, and then they sold a couple other old pots well under the $7,500 that the first jug brought, but a bit over the maximum we'd chosen.

I had my bidding number held tightly in my hand as a young lady lifted the Stewart jug above her head and the auctioneer finally got a bid.

A thousand dollars. Fifteen Hundred. Two thousand. Two thousand five hundred....

It sold for $3,100, and I didn't bring it home with me, although I did go speak to the Asheboro attorney who purchased it, and I'll be visiting him in the near future to take a better picture of the jug and another Stewart piece he said he owns.

For a bit of information on W.J. Stewart and a picture of him, go to my webpage here.

I will one day own a piece of pottery made by W.J. Stewart.
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