W. H. Goss Models

This section gives information about and photos of the various "models" produced by the Goss factory (NB still under construction.)

The term "models" is generally used to describe the wide range of miniaturised copies of historical artefacts, buildings, structures, animals, etc. which formed the mainstay of the factory's business from the 1880's until the family sold the pottery in 1929. The term is used because the vast majority of these bear brief wording (the inscription) which gives some information about the original and which in many cases begins with the words "Model of ...".

The various models are listed in alphabetical order here:

For convenience, the following links provide lists of models relating to some common themes:

Each individual page includes the following information:

inscription:
The descriptive wording which is found on the piece, usually on the underside of the base but sometimes on the "back" of the model (i.e. on the opposite side to the coat of arms).

This basic inscription sometimes has a registered number (of the form Rd. No. xxx where xxx is some number) appended to it, which indicates that the particular shape was registered as the sole property of the Goss factory. Registration numbers were issued sequentially, beginning at 1 in 1884 and ending at something over 640000 in 1914 when the use of registered numbers was superseded by copyrighting (post-1914 designs owned solely by the factory are therefore marked simply "Copyright") so it is possible to deduce the date of registration of a model or design from its registration number (though this only gives an idea of the date the model was first produced -- actual first production may in fact have been several years after registration, while in some cases shapes were registered after they had gone into production). However, not all models first produced between 1884 and 1914 were registered in this way, and copies of those that were do not necessarily bear their registered number. In addition, decorations as well as models were registered so a model may also bear the registration number of the decoration it carries and in cases where both the decoration and the shape were registered can bear the registered numbers of both.

Other wording which appears on the piece, such as wording which is also found on the original of the model, is also noted here.

size:
The height of a model, or in some cases its length or width. Note that the measurements of actual models may differ from those given by anything up to 10% due to unequal shrinkage of different batches of the same model during manufacture. The figures given are therefore rounded to the nearest 5mm and should be taken as a guide only.

Many models were in fact produced in different sizes. As a general rule, the smallest size normally carries one coat of arms or other decoration, while larger sizes usually carry more than one. Exceptions to this rule, where known, are indicated in the notes section for each model.

matching arms:
Most models were associated with a particular town or city, and hence also with the (sole) agent selling Goss porcelain in that town or city -- indeed when the Goss factory first started producing models of this form a model could only be obtained from this local agent, though as the range of models and the demand for them increased this restriction was largely lifted. In addition, each agent could only sell models bearing one of a small selection of local arms, which were again in the main specific to that agent -- generally, these would include the arms of the town or city where the agent was located, but may also include the arms of the county in which that town or city was situated, arms of local schools or personalities, local ecclesiastical arms, or national arms.

This system of sales led to a practice among some collectors of the time of collecting any particular model bearing the "correct" or "matching" arms of the local agent, and later editions of The Goss Record included information indicating which agent was especially associated with each model specifically for the benefit of such collectors.

In most cases the arms of the town or city in which this agent was situated are considered as the "true" matching arms, though the other arms associated with the local agent as listed above are also accepted as appropriate matching arms by most collectors today. However, some models were more closely associated with a specific person rather than a town or city, while others were more generally associated with a county or a country as a whole. In the first two cases, the personal or county arms are then the preferred matching arms, while in the last case, which applies to most models associated with overseas agents and to some associated with Ireland, Scotland and Wales, any arms associated with that country are generally accepted as matching, though there is in some cases a preference for the national arms.

notes:
Additional information about the model.