George Jones is a renowned English potter, started his first apprenticeship at age 14 under Minton. His growth at as a potter continued and by 1850 he was an established China merchant in Stoke-on-Trent. He started his own pottery manufactory in 1962 and by 1965 he has his own land and pottery factory. He began to produce his majolica wares, a glaze that contains tin. His firm George Jones & Sons continued his work after his death in 1893.
The firm advertised majolica in the Pottery Gazette from 1881 to 1886. Some of our knowledge of George Jones & Sons majolica designs comes from annotated pattern books which have survived and now reside in the Wedgwood Museum. Fortunately, much of the firm’s majolica production was also marked and the distinctive mottled brown and green undersurface glazing of Jones majolica allows attribution of other unmarked pieces.
The firm produced a very large amount of majolica which is still available to collectors. Being of uniformly high quality, the pieces are also among the more expensive.
George Jones produced a broad array of majolica wares. The most successful pattern was likely the Apple Blossom which is sometimes erroneously called Dogwood. The design was adapted to a variety of shapes including small and full-sized cheese keepers, a tea service and graduated pitchers. Calla Lily and Pond Lily patterns were likewise utilised in a number of different shapes. Many pieces are decorated with an ochre twisted rope trim with pointed acanthus leaves. Naturalistic themes predominate, and precisely, but artistically modelled flora and fauna add to the unique charm of George Jones majolica.
Among the most prized for collectors are covered dishes including cheese keepers, game pie dishes and sardine boxes