Charles Decker Stoneware Pottery Rundlet, Signed/Dated
Washington Co., Tennessee stoneware pottery rundlet by Charles Frederick Decker (1832-1914), dated and inscribed in script, "Aug. 15th, 1897. Made by C. F. Decker Sr. at the Keystone Pottery of Chucky Valley Tenn." This piece also has an additional inscribed star and heart motif around the spout, eight incised lines around the body. 15 1/2" length, 8 1/2" diameter on ends. Illustrated and exhibited in 2004, "The Pottery of Charles F. Decker: A Life Well Made," Jonesborough/Washington County History Museum catalog, page 38. This rundlet is also illustrated in “Tennessee Potteries, Pots, and Potters – 1790-1950, Volume 1″, Samuel Smith and Steve Rogers, 2011, Figure 2-115, p. 273. Biography (Courtesy of Carole Wahler): Charles Frederick Decker was born in Germany in 1832. He arrived in Philadelphia in his late teens. Oral tradition suggests he worked at the Remmey Pottery before establishing his Keystone pottery there at the age of 25. He moved his family to Delaware for a few years and then back to Philadelphia. After 1869, Decker moved to Virginia, six miles north of Abingdon. The pottery he operated there was located on land owned by a man named Mallicote (Mallicoat). In 1872, he established his pottery in the Nolichucky River Valley near present day Johnson City, Tennessee. For a year or so he operated in both Virginia and Tennessee. He was one of a number of potters who settled in the region during the early years of Reconstruction. He named his Chucky Valley pottery the same name that he had used in Pennsylvania, Keystone Pottery. His pottery was marketed not only in East Tennessee, but also in North Carolina, Virginia, and Kentucky.
Overall very good condition with two shallow chips to one end and shallow chip to top opening. Firing mark to one side.