The soup tureen, cover and stand, illustrated here, is in 'Wellington' pattern. Part of a dinner service, it was printed from finely engraved copper plates. But the Spode-Copeland-Wellington connection is much more than just that of a pottery factory manufacturing, marketing and selling dinnerware associated with a famous military man.
William Taylor Copeland owned the Spode factory when 'Wellington' pattern was first produced. The late Robert Copeland wrote: 'It was probably a friendship between the Duke of Wellington and William Taylor Copeland that led the latter to honour the Iron Duke by reproducing scenes from Wellington's military victories reproduced onto dinnerware'. How well the two knew each other I do not know but Copeland was a young Lord Mayor of London in the 1830s and also served on committees for good causes patronised by the Duke.
Different shapes within a dinner service depicted different scenes of Wellington's military victories. The exact date of introduction of this pattern is unknown but possibly about 1839. Actual pieces are rare so it may not have been produced for long, ending soon after the Duke's death in 1852.
|Print from a damaged copper, 'Wellington' pattern, 'Passing the Douro'|
|'Wellington' meat dish (centre), snapshot Spode museum showcase in 2003|
|21" Gravy dish, 'Wellington' pattern depicting 'Retreat of the French Army from Arroyo to Molinos'|
Robert Copeland's paper was published in 'Country Life Magazine' in 1984. It was entitled 'Pursuing the Potters' Tribute: the Spode Wellington Service'. Items made in this design are known to have been exported via the Hudson's Bay Company to North America.
|Extract from 'Country Life Magazine' 1984|
A bust of the Duke of Wellington was made by the Spode company in about 1824. About 24 cm high it was made from red earthenware, glazed and then coloured to look like bronze. The back had a special backstamp: 'Wellington Spode and Copeland, Fecit'.
|Backstamp on the Spode and Copeland bust|
|Seated figure of Wellington, parian, Copeland, c1852/3 (Copeland ref S195)|
|Seated figure of Napoleon, Companion to Wellington, parian, Copeland, 1853 (Copeland ref S113)|
|1873 trade catalogue featuring listing for Wellington and Napoleon|
Other parian items were produced too. A statuette of the Duke of Wellington standing was made in about 1845 under the Copeland & Garrett ownership of the company (1833-1847). See Robert Copeland's book 'Parian: Copeland's Statuary Porcelain' ref S193.
Later, in about 1848, under the Copeland ownership, a figure described as 'Duke of Wellington Equestrian Statue' was made although one has never been seen - so far...
|Bust of the Duke of Wellington, parian, Copeland & Garrett, 1846 (Copeland ref B92a),|
|Bust of the Duke of Wellington, parian, Copeland, 1852 (Copeland ref B92),|
'Pursuing the Potters' Tribute: the Spode Wellington Service' by Robert Copeland, 'Country Life' published 1984
'Parian: Copeland's Statuary Porcelain' by Robert Copeland (details on my booklist)
'Spode/Copeland Transfer Printed Patterns found at 20 Hudson's Bay company Sites Part of a series on Canadian Historic Sites' by Lynne Sussman (details on my booklist)