Pitcher

Object Number: 
1951.312
Date: 
1869
Medium: 
Silver plate
Dimensions: 
Overall: 13 x 6 7/8 x 9 1/8 in. ( 33 x 17.5 x 23.2 cm )
Marks: 
engraved: front center: "E. A. L." in gothic script stamped: Underside of pitcher struck with incuse company mark: anchor in shield and arched "GORHAM MFG CO" / "0 5 0" / "B". Underside of foot has scratched upside-down "N" and cover hinge and handle g
Description: 
Cast silver plated ice water pitcher; circular body tapering from a plain band around the shoulder to a plain band above the rounded bottom; seated on a plain, cast, circular foot; body engraved on the front center, "E. A. L." in gothic script; above the shoulder band is a short, slightly flared neck with a short, squared pouring lip and a plain applied rim; rim low at the sides; hinged, domed lid, folded in the front over the pouring lip; dome surmounted by a cast polar bear finial; squared strap handle tapering toward the bottom with a scroll hinge beneath to lift the lid open as one pours; maker's marks on the base.
Gallery Label: 
Ice water pitchers and iced beverages became fashionable in the United States during the mid-nineteenth century. The nickel interior of this ice pitcher provided insulation to keep water cold and prevent ice from melting. The tall streamlined body incorporates a sleek hollow handle fitted with an innovative lever thumbpiece. The domed cover, bent at the spout to prevent ice from escaping when poured, features a finial of a polar bear climbing icy crags, a playful reference to the pitcher's function and the chilly origins of ice. This pitcher bears the initials of its owner, Eugene Augustus Livingston (1813-1893).
Credit Line: 
Gift of Mr. Goodhue Livingston
Provenance: 
Eugene Augustus Livingston (1813-1893), who married (2nd) Elizabeth Rhodes Fisher (1828-1878); to their son Richard Montgomery Callender Livingston (1861-1945); to his cousin Goodhue Livingston (1867-1951), the donor.
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group