Denver & Rio Grande RR "Prospector" Demitasse Cup & Saucer Set

From the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad comes this terrific little demitasse cup and saucer set in the "Prospector" pattern.

Condition is as close to Near Mint as they come, with NO cracks, chips, flakes, crazing or repairs. You might find a very few, very light surface marks by tilting the pieces in bright light and looking hard. There are no marks even on the saucer well.

Both pieces match beautifully with ivory colored base ware with cobalt blue "Rio Grande" streamlined monogram and stripes.

The cup has no bottom markings; the saucer is correctly bottom marked Syracuse China, and date coded DD-1 (January 1949), just when the second Prospector train was being added to service (see below). This pattern was never railway bottom marked.

"Prospector" china is best known for the eyecatching dinner plates decorated with a large center design of a prospector with his burro; all other pieces carried only the "Rio Grande" monogram.

According to "Dining on Rails" (Luckin), Prospector china was first ordered in 1941 for use aboard the D&RGW's 2-car name train "Prospector," which operated between Denver, CO and Salt Lake City, UT. The china continued to be used on a second Prospector train that debuted in 1950 and then on the "Rio Grande Zephyr" trains until the late 1970s.

Item ID: 2114

$260 USD

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Time's Treasures Railroad & Country Collectibles


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