A decorated Toleware (tin) Cheese Cradle from the mid-19th century. Probably American (most tin ones that I have seen are), the side panels of this piece are decorated with gold flowers (decals or cut-outs that have been covered with varnish). Nice graceful sweep to the body of the Cradle painted throughout. The cradle measures 13 ¾” x 7 3/4” and 4” high at the ends. Very fine condition: the tin is firm and free of splits, cracks, rust and no major (or even very minor) dents. There is some expected rubbing to the applied floral decoration and although the paint is crackled and scratched inside the cradle, it is only minor rubbing, etc.
Large wheels of cheese (Cheddar, etc.) stood up in these cradles and chunks cut off for eating. Often they were used in General Stores and hunks of cheese were cut-off for customer to purchase. I have a similar example in red paint in my Ruby Lane Shop at the present time.