Decorated with cheerful bright yellow poppies, this tall pitcher actually is a cocoa pot (chocolate pot) from the Santa Fe Railroad or Fred Harvey operations. Made by Syracuse China, it is just over 5 inches tall at the tip of its spout.
CONDITION is lovely - near mint with NO cracks, chips, flakes or repairs. The floral decoration with charming yellow flowers is clear and bright. The spout is perfect. The lid is in perfect condition and it is very clean inside.
The bottom marking is correct, as its maker was Syracuse China. The date code 99-B translates to February, 1970. There are no railroad markings, but this piece is documented authentic. This is because "Poppy" was an "exclusive" pattern -- Syracuse China contracted to produce and sell the design ONLY to the Santa Fe Railroad and enterprising restaurateur Fred Harvey, who operated hotels and eating houses along the lines of the Santa Fe.
*COLLECTOR NOTE: The Santa Fe Railroad and Fred Harvey purchased exclusive rights to the California Poppy pattern, produced by Syracuse China. However, this ownership apparently applied only to heavy restaurant/hotel commercial weight ware, because Syracuse China made and sold lighter household weight china decorated with identical “Poppy”artwork. This "thinware" was never sold to the railroad or used on trains. Instead, it was distributed through standard retail outlets.
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