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Origins of the Transferware Collectors Club

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In early 1998, Dave Arman, Linda Arman, Judie Siddall, David Hoexter, and Norman Wolfe talked about establishing an American version of the British transferware club, “The Friends of Blue.” They decided they would include all colors of transferware made between 1760 and 1900, not only blue. As there were many names for printed pottery, transfer print, printed ware, Staffordshire pottery, Willow, Old Blue, and tranfer ware (note the two words), they decided to call the pottery “transferware.” Aided by a financial grant from the Paul and Gladys Richards Charitable Foundation (both Richards were avid transferware collectors), the Transferware Collectors Club (TCC) was incorportated in late 1998.

Norman, Judie, Linda Hewitt, and Robert Hewitt prepared a brochure that was sent to prospective members (anyone they knew who was interested in transferware). By the end of August 1999, there were over 200 members enrolled in the nascent TCC. Dave Arman set up a website for the TCC and established a quarterly Bulletin, with the first issue mailed to members on September 1, 1999.

The first annual TCC meeting was organized by Judie Siddall, David Hoexter, and Dave Arman. It was held in August 2000 at the New England Conference Center in Durham, NH. Approximatedly 65 members attended. The meeting featured lectures by noted authorities in the ceramics field, a transferware show and sale, and an auction led by Dave Arman.

At its inception in 1999, it was hoped that the TCC would serve as a medium for the exchange of transferware knowledge and research. These goals have come to fruition with the help of the yearly Richards Foundation grant for transferware research, the TCC Bulletin, creation of a database of more than 14,000 patterns, a website, and a Facebook page. The TCC has also created three online exhibits of transferware and a Pinterest page. In addition, the TCC has continued holding annual meetings, where members meet and share their passion for transferware in person. This year, 2017, was the 18th annual meeting.

Prepared by Judie Siddall, October 2017

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