I’m starting a new series here on the blog to highlight some of the interesting things we find in our treasure hunting ventures… auctions, thrift stores, flea markets large and small… all are great sources for the items we acquire and re-sell. Some of them intrigue me to the point where I feel compelled to research them and learn a little more about them. Such is the piece I’m featuring on this very first Vintage Treasure Tuesday.
I bought this pretty little vessel at a rural auction last year. Because of its size – the opening is about 11 inches across – I assumed it was a chamber pot. Because we as a nation haven’t really used chamber pots for many decades, I knew this piece had the potential to be a true antique – meaning, 100 years old or more.
A bit of internet research based on the backstamp shown on the bottom of the piece tells me that my pee pot was made by the West End Pottery Co. of Wellsville, Ohio. The word “Cuban” refers to the shape of the piece – the low, wide stance and beautifully curved bowl. I imagine it came with a lid, long since broken and discarded.
This company manufactured dinner-, toilet- and hotel-ware from 1893-1938. Specifically, the mark on my piece indicates that it is ironstone toilet-ware made sometime between 1893-1910. That means the piece is anywhere from 106 – 123 years old!
That it has survived all these decades simply astounds me. I have put it in what I think is a safe place, hopeful it will survive a few more decades before I manage to drop it or otherwise smash it into a zillion pieces.
Completely as an aside… can you imagine what it would be like to actually have to use one of these on a regular basis? Simple enough for a man… but for women… I assume you just sort of… squat over it? I just… I can’t… let’s just say I’m glad I was born after the advent of indoor plumbing.