Watt Pottery Policeman Cookie Jar FakesBy

Watt Pottery Policeman Cookie Jar Fakes

Original Watt Pottery cookie jars have been selling in the $1,500 price range for years. The earliest confirmed reproductions date to September 1996 but may have been available earlier. Distribution of this fake followed the pattern of earlier Watt Pottery reproductions. They showed up first in New England states including the Brimfield markets, then locations in the south east such as Spartanburg, South Carolina. Wholesale prices to dealers were about $60; the fakes sold to unsuspecting collectors for around $500 each.

The fakes are made from a new mold cast from an original. Due to shrinkage in making the new mold, there are several noticeable differences in dimensions and weight noted in the chart below.

ORIGINAL FAKE
HEIGHT of base 5 5/8″ 5 1/4″
DIA base(top rim) 7 1/2-7 5/8″ 7 1/8″
OVERALL 10 1/4″-10 1/2″ 9 3/4″
WEIGHT 4+ lbs 3 lbs

The fake lid has an obvious molded detail that also helps separate it from the original. The bottom rim of the new lid meets the curved side in a flat ledge or right angle (Fig. 3, arrow). The bottom rim of an original lid meets the side wall in a gradual curve (Fig. 2, arrow).

All original Watt Pottery policeman are clear glazed throughout. The fake is not clear glazed on the inside or the very bottom.

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Fig. 1 Original Watt Pottery policeman cookies jar, left; fake on the right. Note size.

All original Watt Pottery policeman were produced in a single batch in 1951, possibly limited to only a couple dozen pieces. Although original Watt advertisements stated available colors as brown, red, green and black, all known originals are trimmed in black. Any other color of trim would be suspect.

Cross Section of Lid

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Fig. 2 Original lid smoothly blended where bottom rim meets side.

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Fig. 3 New lid has flat shelf.