National Churchill Day: Churchill Toby Jugs

On the 9 April 1963, President J.F. Kennedy bestowed honorary American citizenship to former British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill. This date has since become known as National Winston Churchill Day.

Winston Churchill was born in 1874 to an American mother and a British father and as a bold and controversial character in his own time. After military service in India and the Sudan, he entered politics in 1900, serving first as a Conservative MP before joining the Liberal Party in 1904. He quickly rose through the political ranks, becoming Home Secretary in 1910 and First Lord of the Admiralty in 1911, only losing his position after the disastrous Dardanelles campaign off the coast of Gallipoli. Of course, Churchill's time as Prime Minister through most of the Second World War created the British symbol we know today, cementing his position as one of Britain’s most iconic Prime Ministers.

Most people are familiar with Toby Jugs, popular in the 19thand 20th centuries, depicting instantly recognisable faces typically seated. To commemorate Winston Churchill on this day, we will take a brief look at some of these collectables which we care for in our museum collection.

A Toby Jug dating from the 1940s designed by the British Designer Clarice Cliffe. Dressed in an Admirals uniform and holding a battleship, this jug serves as a reminder of Winston Churchills Naval service during the First World War.
A Spode Toby Jug dating from around 1941. This jug was designed by Eric Olsen a Norwegian designer and modeller. Olsen’s Winston Churchill Toby Jugs were so popular that Spode had to set up an entire department dedicated solely to them.
This Winston Churchill Toby Jug with detachable top hat lid was produced by Kirkland and Co. in around 1941.
This Toby Jug was designed by Harry Fenton and produced by Royal Doulton in the early 1950s. It may have been sold in Winston Churchill's second period as Prime Minister between 1951 and 1955.
Online collections | Hampshire Cultural Trust Online Collections

This article was written by:
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Sam Butcher

Curatorial Assistant who looks after objects and works to make them accessible to the public.
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