The figurine is wielding a sword, is wearing a turban and a tunic and is climbing a tree or a rope. The type of sword appears to be a Turkish; the entire figure is reminiscent of Turkish/Saracen/Muslim attire. The entire figurine has a glassy glaze. The details of the face are very expressive. Some of the colors have rubbed off, but the back does show the brown color. On one leg, one can see the end of the pant leg which is gathered; this was the type of dress that the Turks etc. wore. The bottom of the figurine has a rectangle with "G. Kolb Salzburg"
George Kolb was not a potter and the appraiser believes the mark on the bottom of the figurine indicates ownership, not craftsmanship. George Kolb was a native of Germany, born in 1827, and followed farming until 1852 when he came to America and went to Fort Atkinson, where he resided for two years. In 1854, he came to Bangar and worked in mills and on farms until the 1860's, when he opened a brewery in West Bay City, Michigan, where he continued until his son Frederick and his son-in-law Morris Westover took over the business. George Kolb Sr. died Sept. 1892. The brewery was known as the Salzburg Brewery in 1867. In 1894, records show that the Salzburg Brewery was still being maintained under the above name.
Research has shown that many items brought from Europe such as silver, art objects and decorative objects had been marked by their owners. This was a long journey, mostly by ship, and items did get lost or broken. The figurine has historical as well as monetary value.
Beneath the "G. Kolb Salzburg" rectangle, there could exist the actual maker of the figurine of which Westerland of Germany was the most well-known (early 18th century to the late 19th century).
Appraiser Comments: The bottom of the figurine shows a rectangle with "G. Kolb Salzburg" and does appear to have been applied when made or at a later date. The figurine may have sat on George Kolb's desk at the brewery or at his home. The figurine appears to be salt glaze pottery which is a stoneware with a glaze of glassy, translucent and slightly orange-peel like texture which was formed by throwing common salt into the kiln during the higher temperature of the firing process. Sodium from the salt reacts with silica in the clay body to form a glassy coating of sodium silicate. The glaze may be colorless or maybe colored various shades of brown (from iron oxide), blue (from cobalt oxide), or purple (from manganese oxide). The earliest known production of stoneware was in the Rhineland of Germany around C. 1280. Initially, the process was used on earthenware. Salt glazed stoneware continued in Germany until 1983, when it was stopped due to environmental consideration. I believe the figurine was made in Germany and would date C. mid 19th century. German potteries that made salt glaze stoneware were located in Westerland, Siegburg, Koln and Hohr-Grenzhauser, but I now believe the stamp on the bottom of the figurine was put on in America at the time Kolb owned the Salzburg Brewery. The technique seen on the figurine originated in Germany. The English and American salt glaze pottery is more likely to have the orange-peel texture.
Size: 8 inches tall.
Condition: The overall condition is as you would expect from an object of substantial age that has been displayed/handled/used, usually over the lifetimes of several owners. Photos are part of the description.
Appraiser Tips: Old pottery is very difficult to determine whether it can be cleaned with anything stronger than dish soap.
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