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SOME 1870-1900 STEIN LIDS ARE MARKED 90% ON THE SHANK., MEANING ONLY 10% OF THE MIX WAS NOT TIN! THE GERMANS MADE 100’S OF FAKES IN THE LATE 1800’S AND VERY EARLY 1900’S TO MET THE NEW DEMAND IN THE USA AFTER SEVERAL BIG PEWTER DISPLAYS WERE HELD HERE. BE “VERY LEARY” OF ANY PIECE WITH THE MARKS STAMPED ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE LID OR ON THE BOTTOM OF THE LID INSIDE. ABOUT 95% OF THESE WILL HAVE A WRIGGLE WORK SCENE ON THEM TO ADD TO THE DECEPTION OF AGE.The photo resolution to determine some of the above is just not that good with the size photos on e Bay and many other web sites.During the years 20 I wrote / edited ‘THe Pewter Beer Stein Collector’s (and Researcher’s( Newsletters.” These were a group of very informal essays along with supporting photos. (EDITOR) ………,, NINE 06-012 –STEWART STEGGLAS SERVER –HOW MUCH VALUE .. ……………………TEN 07- 001 – RE: “PILLOW FIGHT STEIN”- ANY COMMENTS FROMTHE READERSHIP ON THE ABOVE ARTICLE, REFERENCE THE PRICE WANTED?These shapes were especially popular in the West of England,and Howard Cotterell’s Old Pewter, Its Makers and Marks(Published by Batsford, London in 1929 and reprinted in 1963), which has been regarded as the pewter collector’s Bible for many years remarks that 80 per cent of early tulip tankards bore the touch-marks of pewterers from either Bristol or Exeter.It did not take long for these new shapes to catch on,and although the domed lid fell out of use at about 1775, the tulip and bell shape remained in favour right through the 19th century, getting even more swag-bellied as time passed. A ten and a quarter inch cylindrical lidded flagon with scroll handle and open shaped thumb piece and domed cover. The bulbous shape next to it suggests its 18th century date and is probably German.This began for me as a hobby but I will come back to this subject at a later date, because todays post is about Pewter Tankards. Yes that looks better you may think,but now try a couple of pewter tankards and you will see what I mean. If champagne should always be drunk from a silver tankard,then beer should be drunk from a pewter one,ideally with a glass bottom,so you can see if any enemy comes through the door while you are drinking; We are talking about past days of course.
With regards to the cleaning of old pewter tankards is simple and logical. If it is purely for ornamentation it is not necessary -and with a really old piece it is downright foolish Why!
Tankards,flagons and similar items are, however, datable by shape, and any markings which provide confirmation and additional information are all things to look for if you are contemplating starting a collection.
As a matter of fact,the touchplates recording the touchmarks of pewterers before 1666 were lost in the great fire of London.
A century later an American living in London recorded that it was possible to send to the pub for beer,which would be brought by the servant of the ” tap-house”, complete with pewter mugs bearing the owners name,and that each morning the same servant would go from house to house collecting the mugs, which he strung on a leather strap for ease of transport.
Coming back to the earliest tankards, the flat covers were sometimes embellished with saw-tooth serrations at the front,so that when the domed cover came into vogue at about 1690,this practice was continued, and remained until the beginning of the second decade of the 18th century.A pewter pokal, 16.5 inches, dated 1636 (very authentic and not a Weygang historismus piece) A presentation piece, but not indicated by anything on the piece. The names on the shield are all German knights so it well may have come out of the “30 Years War.” [FWTD] Editor: Thanks for all those good suggestions Dick, but I’m not certain some of my readers would take well to being called “dummies! So just for you Dick, here are some Steve’s “PEWTER RULES FOR DUMMIES” (and also for all you beginning stein collectors.) Here are SOME of the most important things to look for to help determine if a pewter stein / tankard / vessel is old or a newer reproduction / fake.