A bone china teacup and saucer decorated with medallions depicting mountain scenery, from J & M P Bell's Glasgow Pottery in Port Dundas.
John and Matthew Bell set up the Glasgow Pottery in the early 1840s to make clay fire-ware. Within ten years they had expanded their range of products and were also producing parian ware (a white marble-like porcellaneous earthenware), terracotta and bone china. The business became very successful, eventually employing over 800 staff, and was the only Scottish exhibitor in the China, Porcelain and Earthenware class of the Great Exhibition in London in 1851.
Matthew Bell died in 1870 and his brother John ten years later. John Bell's death was said to have been hastened by financial difficulties linked to the crash of the City of Glasgow Bank in 1878, and he died intestate and in debt. The pottery was sold as a going concern but closed early in the 20th century.
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums
bone china, City of Glasgow Bank, clay fire-ware, exhibitions, Glasgow Pottery, Great Exhibition, 1851, J & M P Bell & Co, landscapes, medallions, mountains, parian ware, potteries, pottery manufacturers, saucers, tea drinking, teacups, terracotta