Worcester Ware Mug

Mid to Late 18th Century
Antique artifact of the Worcester Ware Mug.

This mug depicts three Freemasons, a Master, a Senior Warden and a Junior Warden, each wearing the jewel of his Office. Masonic symbols cover the mug: square; radiant triangle; G; upraised, bent arm holding a trowel; cable; compasses and circle segment; radiant sun; crossed keys; bag; crossed plume pen; triangle; T-square; open book; square and compasses with both points of the compasses on top of the square; plumb; plummet; trowel; gavel; smooth stone block; gauge; Corinthian column; oval; square shape; tessellated floor; three steps; three candle-s; unfinished pyramid; beehive with bees; moon; crescent moon with face; seven radiant stars; radiant sun with face; aprons; level.

This Worcester ware mug was donated to the Grand Lodge Library and Museum in 1899. This was 14 years after Grand Master William A. Brodie created in 1885 a “relics and curios” sub-Committee to the Library and Reading Room Committee (formed in 1884). The sub-Committee was formed to “take charge of these articles, to add to their number, and in general, for the collection and arrangement of archaeological objects and matters of Masonic interest and curiosity.” In 1886, the sub-Committee became a Standing Committee called the Committee on Antiquities.

Worcester ware was first manufactured in 1751, when the Lowdin pottery was moved from Bristol to Worcester. (Columbia University Press, 2007). The mug was donated by Mrs. James H. Whitney, the niece of Rhoda Harden (b. 1801, d. 1892), who was the daughter of the original owner, Mr. Fuller of Bridgewater, Mass. There is no information (at this time) as to whether Mr. Fuller was, in fact, Brother Fuller.

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Note: Image and research by Catherine M. Walter, Curator