For sale is this large copper box by A E Jones (following Jesson Birkett), the lid set with two Ruskin Pottery roundels. This box is unmarked but carries the fascinating inscription ” L&L.P.S. Exhibition / 1908 / Opened by Lady Faire”. This is undoubtedly a reference to the Leicester and Leicestershire Photographic Society which is still in existence and can be found at this link.
Lady Sarah Faire was a member of the prominent Leicester Faire family who were major textile and shoe industrialists and active supporters of education and the arts in and around Leicester. A full biography of the Faire family history can be found on the University of Leicester (which they helped found) website here. It appears that the Faire’s acquired Evington Hall from John Paul Cooper’s family, in the early 20th century. A photo of lady Faire is included in the images, courtesy of the University of Leicester archive.
This design of box appears in the Jesson, Birkett & Co catalogue, circa 1905, to be made in bronze or silver plate. It is likely that this box was made in copper by A E Jones. It was also pictured in by A E Jones’s son, Kenneth Crisp Jones in the book, The Silversmiths of Birmingham and their marks: 1750-1908, as being made by A. Edward Jones.
The box interior is wood lined. The hinges are beautifully made in the arts and crafts style. Overall condition is really excellent and original, though the copper has been polished and is therefore a little “bright”.
I am grateful to HammerandHand.co.uk for some of this information.
Maker: A E Jones
Designer: A E Jones / Jesson Birkett
Material: Copper, Ruskin pottery
Condition: Excellent, copper is polished
Size: 22 cm long, 10.5 cm deep, 5 cm high