Pitcairns Ltd


Location and period of operation:

Pitcairns Ltd





Earthenware manufacturer at the Pinnox Pottery, Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent, England
  • The partners were Thomas Andrew Tennant Pitcairn (b.1861 d.1906) (Managing Director) and his brother William S. Pitcairn. [NOTE: the M.D. was previously, and probably erroneously, identified as A. Semant Pitcairn]

  • The Pitcairns business closed around 1901 and in 1903 The Henry Richards Tile Company took over the Pinnox Works.

  • William emigrated to the USA and formed a company in New York, William S. Pitcairn Corporation, who acted as agents and importers for English pottery companies. 

  • Another brother, John Tennant Pitcairn was a pottery and glass trade representative based in London. He died in 1907, aged 50. 



Transfer ware bowl in the Aquilla Pattern 


covered serving dish in the Oriel Pattern 


     sauce boat and stand in the ETON pattern 

photos courtesy:  Angela McCravy



Printed mark, 1895-1901

Porcelain Royale
Pitcairns Limited

Printed marks 1894-1901


The Pinnox Works 

- click for more -


The William S. Pitcairn Corporation
104 Fifth Avenue,
Now York City 

After the closure of Pitcairns pottery company William emigrated to the USA and formed 
a company in New York, who acted as agents and importers for English pottery companies. 


William Pitcairn's daughter, Gillie, worked as 
an importer for the business

The Princeton Alumni Weekly
December 1, 1920


Royal Doulton Bone China

William S. Pitcairn Corporation
Sole Agents for the
United States
and Canada

1925 Advert



Tariff Act 1929

William Pitcairn appeared before the hearings of the
United States Senate Committee on Finance to
represent importers of English China and Earthenware


NOTE: the obituary gives the middle name as 'Tennent' 
- it most likely should be 'Tennant'  

John Tennent Pitcairn, Aged 50

THE pottery and glass trades of London lost one of the most genial of representatives when Mr. John T. Pitcairn, of Ely House, 13, Charterhouse-street, E.C., passed away on July 11, at his residence, Braeside, Ardbeg-road, Herne Hill, S.E. To say that it is “ with regret we announce ” Mr. Pitcairn’s death is but feebly to express the feelings with which we do so. The news of his death, though not altogether unexpected, was received with deep sorrow by all the wholesale and retail dealers in our trades who had ever done business with him. That sorrow we are sure will be shared by a number of buyers on the other side of the Atlantic, who never failed to call at 13, Charterhouse-st., on their periodical visits to London. Mr. Pitcairn's health broke down about two and a half years ago, and though he rallied for a time, his illness left its permanent effect on his lungs and on his heart. He had been confined to room for some weeks, and though he suffered acutely towards the end, he bore it with remarkable patience and resignation. Until his health failed him, as stated, he was full of energy and vigour, and was one of the most enthusiastic men in the trade.  

The deceased was born in Scotland, but while he was very young his parents moved into England, so that his whole training has been English. His first business experience was not in connection with pottery, his father, we understand, having been engaged in another industry. The late Mr. Pitcairn, however, had brothers in the trade as manufacturers of earthenware, under the style of Pitcairns, Ltd., with works at Tunstall. They made chiefly for foreign and Colonial markets, especially for the United States. One of his brothers is now well established at New York. Mr. Wm. S. Pitcairn, of 19, Murray-street, is one of the best known men in our industry in the States. He represents Doultons and other leading houses. That he is held in high esteem in his adopted country is evident from his position as one of the trustees of the Crockery Board of Trade of New York. 

The late Mr. John T. Pitcairn became associated with F. Winkle & Co., of the Colonial Pottery, Stoke-on-Trent, about fifteen years ago. They are manufacturers of general useful and ornamental earthenware, and he undertook their London agency. About the same time he commenced to represent Pointon & Co., china manufacturers, of Stoke-on-Trent. Apart from their business connection, Mr. T. Pointon and the deceased have been on terms of the closest friendly intimacy practically all their lives. As a representative, the late Mr. Pitcairn was full of enterprise and tact. The latter quality is an important one for a representative in these days, when dealers and buyers have so many partialities — and prejudices. We have it from a buyer, who candidly confessed that he himself had both, that his late friend had acquired the happy facility of meeting the former and of overcoming the latter with conspicuous success. The late Mr. Pitcairn was held in high esteem by the firms he represented, not only because he had so greatly extended their London connection, but on account of his genial friendliness. He was also respected by his customers, and we are justified in saying that he was by them regarded as one of the most reliable authorities in the trade. When trade questions were discussed, the views and opinions of the deceased always carried weight with them. In addition to the firms named, Mr. Pitcairn represented A. & J. Davis, glass manufacturers, of Stourbridge, and L. Bernardaud & Co., china manufacturers, Limoges. The deceased was held in great esteem in the suburb in which he resided. (This is within the personal knowledge of the writer, who lives in the same neighbourhood.) 

He was one of the sides-men at St. Jude’s Church, Dulwich-road. He took no active part in politics, though he had strong views on the questions of the day, and did not hesitate to express them. He was of a quiet, retiring disposition, and found his recreation in bowls. The quietude which is the characteristic of that popular game was in perfect harmony with his disposition We have known him for fifteen years, and we cannot imagine anyone having a quarrel with him. If there ever was one it must have been a one-sided affair. He was peculiarly sympathetic, and was ever ready to assist those in need as far as he could. He was a subscriber to the Pottery and Glass Trades Benevolent Institution, and was a member of the Board of Management. It was decided by the Board to elect three annuitants at the annual general meeting held last January. There were five applicants, one of them a well-known 'member of the trade, who was in great need. Mr. Pitcairn worked hard to secure his election, and succeeded. That was his last duty in connection with the Benevolent Institution. 

The deceased was a "Free and Accepted Mason." The funeral took place on July 15. There was a more than usually impressive choral service, conducted by two of the clergymen ministering at the church lie attended, and the interment took place at Norwood Cemetery. The love and respect entertained for the deceased were indicated by the large attendance at the church and at the graveside. In addition to the members of the family and local acquaintances, these were present the following members of our trades: Mr. W. J. Bowering, representing Winkle & Co., Mr. J. E. Heath, Mr. J. Pointing, Mr. John Porter, Mr. H. Bates, Mr. W. W. Wood, Mr. A. P. Millington, Mr. Penman, Mr. Turnbull, Mr. Stern, Mr. Cecil Cooper and some others. Amongst some dozens of floral tributes there was one "With deep sympathy" from the staff of Winkle & Co., another labelled "With intense sympathy from Tom Pointon," and one "affectionate memory from John Porter." After the committal a number of the deceased’s fellow-craftsmen filed past the grave, each reverently dropping a sprig of acacia on the coffin as their last tribute in accordance with Masonic ritual.

The Pottery Gazette, August 1, 1907



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