Revolutionary War Era Silver Milk Pot

Grade Range: K-12
Resource Type(s): Artifacts
Date Posted: 2/1/2017

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History recently acquired at auction a rare 18th-century silver milk pot or creamer with engraved with symbols and an inscription that support the American colonists’ ongoing boycott of imported goods, especially tea, during the months following a 1773 Tea Act aimed at expanding the British East India Company’s monopoly. Domestic objects from this era that reflect political or economic sentiments are rare.

Decorated with the female figure of a Native American holding a tea plant, topped by a liberty cap with a crate of tea and a British ship by her side, the milk pot has an inscription that reads, “Britons take back your baneful tea/You n’er make a slave of me” which refers to many colonists’ pledge to end the consumption of taxed tea.

National Standards

United States History Standards (Grades 5-12)

Instructional Strategies