Trash or Treasure?


Victorian jardiniéres: functional art

Q. I have this nice old pot that I am hoping you could tell something about.

A. Your “jardinière” or “garden pot” was made by Maddock Pottery Company of Trenton, New Jersey. Your pot dates to the early 1900’s —  the Victorian period. Victorian interiors often included exotic plants as décor. Most popular were ferns and palms, partly because of the lack of light these varieties could withstand. Dark stained furniture and architectural moldings with heavy drapes were the rage at the time. A large, ceramic jardinière on a plant stand would add the final touch to decorating a room from this period.

Yours unfortunately is not in the best condition. The gold has worn and closer inspection of your photographs show some cracks. Not to worry, most of its imperfections will not be noticed with a plant in it. There are many examples of this type of pottery for sale. Your pot in its current condition would sell for under $50.

Karen Waterman is a fine art, antique furniture and decorative arts appraiser in the East Bay area and will answer as many questions about your own “hidden treasures” as possible. By sending a letter of email with a question, you give full permission for use in the column. Names, addresses or e-mail will not be published and photos will be returned if requested. Send e-mails (digital photos are encouraged) to Send snail mail to East Bay Newspapers, Attn. Karen Waterman, P.O.Box 90, Bristol, RI 02809.

karen waterman


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