Ralph Hall


1822-41 (ca.)


13 1/4 x 17 inches


Glazed stoneware

Object No.


Credit line

Museum Purchase


On back (in blue): "R Hall's / Select Views / Gyrn, / Flintshire / Wales./ Stone China" ; impressed "16"


Like the America and Independence plate by James Clews that Stickley owned, this platter–featuring a view of Gyrn Flintshire in Wales–was displayed in the family's Syracuse home and also featured in the 1902 Retail Plates that Stickley used to market his furniture. When we think of Stickley and his taste, blue and white transferware is not something that immediately springs to mind, and yet the appearance of this platter in both his Syracuse home and at Craftsman Farms, in addition to its use in promotional photographs, clearly indicates an attachment to it, an appreciation of the visual qualities that he felt added something to the objects it was displayed upon.

The choice of the Gyrn Castle view is significant because unlike the Clews plate, the concern is not history or patriotism, but a Romantic notion of the landscape that flourished particularly in the 19th century. Although ownership of the land can be traced back to at least the 17th century when the Mostyn family occupied the property, it was the period between 1817 and 1824 and when the modern identity of the Castle emerged. Purchased and expanded by cotton merchant John Douglas between 1817-24, the castle came to reflect the ideals of a picturesque, scenic landscape that was popular at the time.