Signature

 

The earliest Handcraft Shop pieces bore a simple seagull over an M signature.

Hannah TuttHannah_Tutt.html
Sarah W. TuttSarah_Tutt.html
HTHT.html
Maude MilnerMaude_Milner.html
Herbert J Hall, MDHerbert_Hall.html
Arthur Irwin HenneseyArthur_Hennesey.html
Arthur Eugene BaggsA_E_Baggs.html

Most Marblehead Pottery bears a signature of a Square Rigged Sailing Ship flanked by the letters M and P.   The very earliest marks were hand drawn or painted.  Some early pieces had MARBLEHEAD written beneath the ship.  Other early pieces were simply marked with only the ship.

Later pieces were marked with impressed marks of the squared rigged ship flanked by the M and P.



Most wall pockets, frogs and hanging pieces are unsigned.  Some candlestick holders are unmarked.


An oval Marblehead Pottery paper label was applied in addition to the impressed mark beginning in 1915.  A second oval label occasionally listed the retail price.

Many decorated and a few undecorated pieces also bear additional marks or signatures.


Pottery was sometimes marked with a single initial presumably belonging to the designer/decorator.  Other Marblehead pieces were marked with two initials; one for the designer and one for the decorator craftsman (woman) who executed the design.

Herbert J Hall, MD founded Marblehead pottery in 1904 as a part of the handicraft industries.  With time Hall left the pottery management to Arthur Baggs.  In 1915 Hall sold the pottery to Baggs.   The initials HJH suggest Hall’s hand in this piece.

Arthur Eugene Baggs signed early pieces with a painted or incised B within a circle.


Later pieces bear a merged AB signature.  


Still later pieces bear the script initials AEB, in some cases with the year that the piece was produced.













Pieces designed by Arthur Baggs and decorated by Sarah Tutt were designated by both the merged “AB” Baggs signature and the separate “T.”  The Baggs signature was positioned either to the left  or above the Tutt signature.  A cider pitcher was signed with a B over a T.

    Arthur Irwin Hennesey was a designer whose initials “AIH” were inscribed on some pieces.                                   


    Occasionally, an isolated “H” is found on pieces. 


    More often his last initial “H” was  coupled with a “T” denoting that of decorator Sarah Tutt either side by side or vertically oriented.

   In a few examples the name Hennessey was spelled out and accompanied by the intials HT.

The initials HT probably represent the combined efforts of Arthur Hennesey and Sarah Tutt

Sarah Tutt was a decorator employed at Marblehead Pottery.  The initial “T” was combined with an “M” on pieces designed by Margaret Milner and decorated by Sarah Tutt while the initial “T” was combined with the initial “H” on pieces designed by Arthur Hennessey and decorated by Sarah Tutt.

Hannah Tutt never had a role in the production of Marblehead pottery.   Unfortunately, for many years the initials “HT” were misinterpreted as her signature rather than representing the combined efforts of Arthur Hennesey and Sarah Tutt.

The various stylized combinations of “M” combined with “T” may represent pieces designed by Maude Milner that were decorated by Sarah Tutt.

Annie E. Aldrich