R4331 R4332 and other White Star Line Patterns


May 8, 2001
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In gazing at the cobalt saucer again on Hennings site, it was stated that there were two patterns made. One for Olympic and the other, a similar pattern, for Titanic. Can you tell me the difference between the two, and does an example of R4331 exist? If so can someone tell me where to see the other pattern? (Parks?)
I was at Parks website and there is a wonderful article on White Star Line China. I spotted what was called "large pattern" china. Was that a later pattern, or used along side the rest on Titanic?
Thank you in advance.
Colleen
 

Steve Santini

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Nov 29, 2000
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Dear Colleen,
From the research I have conducted (and, it is very exhaustive) , it would appear that the only known examples of the R4331 pattern are in the Spode Museum Trust in the form of two dessert plates. The surmise that R4331 was made for Olympic and R4332 was made for Titanic is a theory I have developed. Given the information I have found out from the British Patent Office as well as what I have learned from Spode and the British Public Records Office, it would appear there is some substance to my theory. The only difference between the R4331 pattern and the R4332 pattern is a single , vs. double row of raised gold dots around the rim. Hope this is of help to you. Regards, Steve Santini.
 
May 8, 2001
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Thank you Steve. That did help quite allot. I have searched all day on the internet, the Spode Museum and related web sites, but was unable to see any other on-line examples of the cobalt plates. (Sure had an enjoyable day though!)

Since so very few were made, and no one really knows what and where they were used for, how far fetched is a theory that they were Captain Smith's hand selected design for the ship he was commanding at the time? Since Spode must have been a very prominant and respected business in Smith's own home town, it would have been with great pride that he had a small set for private use. Maybe he had an uncle or family member that was employed there at one time. Just a speculation...

Thank you Shelly for sharing the picture. It is certainly a place I would like to visit!

Sincerely, Colleen
 
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sean szmalc

Guest
Hi Colleen,

I read your posting regarding your query. Mr. John Cross and Philip Croucher of White Star Line International Limited have carried out over many years extensive research and are also consultants to many auction houses throughout the world those including Southebys, Christies, Philips and Bonhams to name a few.

It is with great pleasure to list the research that both gentleman have concluded :-

Records of several pattern numbers for designs used by the White Star Line. There is no information to suggest that any of the patterns were exclusive to White Star Line.

The patterns known to have been used by White Star Line for their ships are: pattern number 1/9608 introduced in about 1899; R416 introduced in about 1901; R3717 introduced in about 1909 and R4331, a modified version of R416, and R4332 both introduced in 1911. R4331 has a registration number 580303 dated 14th March 1911. This registered the pattern with the British Patent Office.

R416, R4331 and R4332, are similar designs for patterns for bone china and were richly decorated in gold and cobalt blue. R4331, with the company crest, OSNC (Oceanic Steamship Navigation Company) This is the pattern believed to have been used in the First Class Dining Room on the Titanic and her sister ship the Olympic. Pieces were excavated from the wreck of the Titanic together with ware made by other manufacturers.

A pattern on earthenware called Bradford, with registered number 461740, was produced with the White Star crest. This pattern was first registered in 31st July 1905. This was produced on a shape called White Star shape.
Another pattern on earthenware was a border of Star sheet pattern printed in blue and used with the OSNC crest in the centre. This is known to have been produced in the 1920s from an existing piece in a private collection.

There may be other patterns of which are as yet unaware, usually orders for ware would be placed through an agent for the White Star Line and Spode, as the manufacturer, would have no knowledge of the end use of the product. Indeed some customers remained anonymous. Copeland's agents for White Star were Stoniers of Liverpool whose records were destroyed in the war. John Stonier, who came from the Staffordshire Potteries, started Stoniers in Liverpool in 1861. By 1876 he had made his fortune and retired, the company was sold to Stuart Crystal of Edinburgh. In 1997 Liverpool jewellers David M. Robinson bought Stoniers just as it was about to be lost as one of Liverpool’s most famous names. The company continues to trade today with some of the original staff from Stoniers helping to maintain the tradition of china retailing in Liverpool.

Today Spode produces Lancaster Cobalt, one of the company's most prestigious patterns, which is similar in design to the cobalt and gold patterns used by the White Star Line.

The Crown Derby Factory in Derby also supplied dessert plates and other wares. They have limited archive material from that period dealing with the shipping line. They also have an example of the dessert service Crown Derby produced which can be seen in their Museum.

With sincere thanks to Mr. John Cross (Honorary Historian, Falkirk Titanic Society.)and Philip Croucher both gentleman Managing Directors of White Star Line International Limited.
 

Steve Santini

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Nov 29, 2000
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Just to clarify some points,
The information contained in the above post by Mr. Szmalc is available to anyone caring to contact Spode. It is not, as implied, the result of "years of extensive research" by historians for the Falkirk Titanic Society. In fact, much of the above information is contained in an article on White Star Line china patterns written by the curator of the Spode Trust and Museum, Pam Woolliscroft. Much of it is copied in the above post word for word! There is nothing new or unknown here and Spode makes this article available to anyone who inquires about patterns made by Spode for the White Star Line. The pattern 4332 was likely NOT used in the first class dining areas on board Titanic. It is believed that very limited numbers of this pattern were ever produced and it's use may have been limited as room service dining wares to the private promenade suites on board Titanic. Unlike other mass produced WSL line patterns made by Spode, Derby, and other makers under contract to Stoniers, there is no evidence to suggest that R4332 was ever made for any other ship of the line besides Titanic. Although Spode believes the pattern may also have been used on board Olympic, there is no evidence to support this. I know, I have researched this pattern for over 7 years now and I have asked Spode MANY questions concerning R4332. However,it is confirmed that the cobalt and gold R4332 pattern HAS been found on the wreck of the Titanic. It HAS NOT been seen on the wreck of the Republic or any other WSL ship. As well, pieces of this service have not circulated for public sale with attribution to any other ships of the line except Titanic. On the examples of R4332 known to exist that were not salvaged from Titanic, many bear some sort of oral history linking them to Titanic. Peter Boydd Smith in Southampton has a demitasse set in this pattern taken off Titanic, Ken Marschall has the same set given as a presentation piece to a man who supplied equipment for Titanic, a set exists in a private collection in the USA which was given away before being loaded on board Titanic, and so on. In fact, the pattern is SO RARE that were it to be assigned to all of the ships of the fleet, examples of it certainly would have appeared by now. It would be nice the next time someone posts the fruits of "years of extensive research" that they would be good enough to tell the truth and explain that they are in fact reproducing or copying the research actually done and published BY SOMEONE ELSE. Regards, Steve Santini.
 
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sean szmalc

Guest
hey who's saying thet didnt get their research material from spode you are not the only person in the world Mr Santini that can do reseaarch
 

Steve Santini

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Nov 29, 2000
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Well then Sean,
Would it not have been proper and ethical for you to have listed Spode as the source of this PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED material rather than put up a post obviously worded so as to give credibility to your own "historians" and thier ability to research? After reading your post, one could get the impression that the information contained in the post was uncovered exclusively by people associated with your own Society. Is this the impression you are trying to convey to readers Sean? It sure appears you are... especially when you say, and I quote, "It is with great pleasure to list the research that both gentlemen have concluded-". Sure sounds worded that certain way for a reason! And you are right, I am not the only person in the world who can do research. In fact, I would strongly suggest others should do some research too; particularly into your alleged "Titanic plates". Such research, conducted by myself, has provided, and continues to provide, untold hours of enterainment!
Steve Santini.
 

Steve Santini

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Nov 29, 2000
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To all interested parties.
I just got off the phone after a chat with Mr. Charlie Haas. Some time ago, when I had a phone conversation with Mr. John Cross, (the man to whom Mr. Szmalc often refers), Mr. Cross assured me that both Charlie Haas and Jack Eaton had seen his collection of alleged Titanic artifacts and believed them to be authentic. Indeed, he said both Jack and Charlie were good friends of his. I just spoke to Charlie Haas and he assured me that he 1) has not inspected or authenticated ANY alleged Titanic items owned by Cross, and 2) He does not want his name associated in any way with what he termed a "commercial venture". It is at Charlie's personal request that I am making this post to ET. Regards, Steve Santini.
 
May 8, 2001
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Apologies are in order for possibly (unintentionally) misleading some of you. The picture I posted is of the LANCASTER COBALT pattern mentioned above as a current market item.
Sorry for any confusion.
Colleen
 

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