People visit the Stirling Smith for many reasons. Recently the Goss Ware Collector’s Club which draws its membership Britain-wide came specially to see the original Stirling Jug. They brought these three jugs as a gift to the Stirling Smith collections. Printed on the base is ‘Model of the Stirling Pint Measure. One of the ancient standard measures of Scotland deposited in Stirling by Act of Parliament 1457’.
Stirling was given the Jug as it was the main brewing area of Scotland. Measures in all other towns had to be calibrated against it. Made of gun metal, it contains about three and a half Imperial pints. Pride in the Jug continued to the early 20th century, when the Jug was carried in civic processions.
The design of this piece of Goss ware was registered in 1910. The company embellished these souvenirs with coats of arms from different towns. Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirling are on the pieces here. Another in the Smith collections has Cambridge and there are examples with many other English towns, so the Stirling Jug is known to Goss collectors world-wide.
In 1888 and 1901 the original Stirling Jug was loaned to the Glasgow International Exhibitions. It is one of the unique objects in the Smith collections and every young visitor learns about it.
photo taken by Stirling Smith collections volunteer Alan Gardiner