This lot features an early California Gold Rush transferware plate, originating from Creil & Montereau, France, out of the Lebeuf & Milliet pottery shop circa 1850. Creil and Montereau pottery, a business which operated until 1895 and was created from the amalgamation of two potteries, one at Creil-sur-Oise, north of Paris, established in 1797, and another at Montereau, south of Paris, established in 1748. Louis Lebeuf and Etienne Thibault operated the business from 1825 to 1833, and the wares were stamped 'Creil and Montereau' and 'Lebeuf Milliet & Cie.' from about 1840 until the death of Lebeuf in 1876. Earthenware made at the Creil factory was the first French pottery to use transfer printing on earthenware. By reproducing engravings on different topics, they created several sets of plates. This particular piece is titled across the bottom; "Plaisirs Du Pain Dans Le Sacramento", translating to "The Joy of Bathing in the Sacramento River", and is additionally labeled "No 6". The plate depicts two California Gold Miners (gold rush seekers) being frightened by caimans (crocodiles) in the swamps. The scene is encircled by an intricate border of gorgeous flowers. The back of the plate shows period correct hallmarks, labeled; "LeBeuf Milliet & Cie - Creil & Montereau". The plate is additionally stamped on the bottom "6. - K". A similar Lebeuf & Milliet transferware plate went to Heritage Auctions in November of 2010 - Dallas Grand Format Americana & Political Memorablilia Auction #6047 - Lot #47286, and sold for nearly $900. Overall, the plate shows very-good condition, showing vivid detail of transferred graphic onto earthenware, and displaying only very-light crazing, and wear to the hard line of the plate. The plate measures 7 3/4" across. These were made during the Gold Rush. An example attributing the plates as being Gold Rush related was sold by Heritage Auction Company in 2010.
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