Huge thanks to Shauna Gregg of Tyne & Wear Archives and Museums for providing photos of a bowl with the Carr impress (see below). Shauna writes 'I've attached images but the mark has not been photographed. The records say it has an impressed mark on the base showing an anchor, stag's head and JOHN CARR & SONS.' I've added Bell's image of the mark to refresh your memory (and mine). Click on the images to enlarge.
The final transfer detail shows the much-copied West View of the Cast Iron Bridge over the River Wear. So does it match up with any of the items in my August 23rd posting? If so, it might seem reasonable to attribute that object to Carr.
Looking at the cloud formations, I found only one similar match. A plaque with transfer-printed leaf borders (see my August 21st post).
So far, so good. A closer inspection, however, revealed differences (see below). The left image is the bowl, and the right image the plaque. The plaque has a bricked wall underneath the buildings on the right. The foliage in the foreground is shaded differently.
At this point I felt ready to give up. But look at the images below. The plaque (right detail) has a man in a rowing boat in front of the left ship. Now look at the bowl (left detail). The rowing boat is missing, but its ghost image remains underneath the shading of the water.
So I think we can say conclusively that they come from the same transfer plate, and that the plaque predates the bowl. The transfer plate became worn over time and Carr had it re-engraved, losing the rowing boat in the process. Sadly, one thing we can't say conclusively is whether the plaque was made by Carr. He could have bought the worn transfer plate from another pottery and had it re-engraved. We know that he bought transfer plates from the Garrison Pottery after its closure in 1865.
Stephen Smith lives in London, and is always happy to hear from other collectors. If you have an interesting collection of plaques, and are based in the UK, he will photograph them for you. Free advice given regarding selling and dispersal of a collection, or to those wishing to start one. Just get in touch...
This website is indebted to collectors, dealers and enthusiasts who have shared their knowledge or photos. In particular: Ian Holmes, Stephen Duckworth, Dick Henrywood, Norman Lowe, Keith Lovell, Donald H Ryan, Harold Crowder, Jack and Joyce Cockerill, Myrna Schkolne, Elinor Penna, Ian Sharp, Shauna Gregg at the Sunderland Museum, Keith Bell, Martyn Edgell, and Liz Denton.