Face Jug

The Case:

Our Pennsylvania contributor has a startling piece of art – a ceramic jug with eyes, nose, ears and teeth bared in a grimace.

In 1950 her grandfather, a plumber, was digging up land for a school in Germantown, PA, and found this peculiar piece of pottery.

Our contributor suspects African Americans made this face jug during the Civil War era and wonders if it came to Philadelphia on the Underground Railroad.

History Detectives researches the site where the plumber first found this pottery, to see if there could be an Underground Railroad connection, visits the Philadelphia Museum of Art and heads to South Carolina to try to find out the who, what, when and where of this curious jug.

Discuss this story

Season 8, Episode 8

Gwen Wright Location:
New York and Chicago

More Photos Of The Face Jug

Related Content

Related Links


This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.


blog comments powered by Disqus