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Biscuit barrels & their history
Charming relics of a more gracious era, the first biscuit barrels appeared in England c.1860 and were very popular through the late 1930s.
Manufactured in an astonishing array of largely floral and Chinoise-influenced patterns, they were proudly brought out when serving biscuits at tea time, luncheon, or whenever the occasion warranted. Beautifully decorated, some with sterling silver lids and handles, they were never airtight and weren't designed to be used for storage. They were intended to beautify the table.
They were made by many of the leading ceramic manufacturers, including: - Wedgewood, Coalport, Copeland, Worcester, Wiltshaw and Robinson (Carltonware), S. Fielding (Crown Devon and Royal Devon), A. G. Richardson (Crown Ducal), Adams and Co., W. Wood and Co., Keeling and Co., Lovatt and Lovatt, Langleyware, Parott and Co., Lancaster and Sons, Clarice Cliff, and many more...
Many barrels had silver plate mounts - a few had sterling silver. Often the plating has become worn, through many years of polishing - the lids and handles reflecting the decades of loving care. Cherished for their genteel appearance and often lively designs, these biscuit barrels have found a new audience in recent years, and are gaining popularity among antique collectors around the world, including the United. Check out this link to a website specializing in biscuit barrels.