Monday, November 21, 2011

Mustache Cups ~

I'd heard of them ~ mustache cups ~ but never actually seen one until I bought this one a couple weeks ago during my first visit to Jeffrey's Antique Gallery in Findlay, Ohio, which is the largest antique mall in Northwest Ohio. Their website can be found HERE. Mustache cups are one of those interesting items that, at one time, were very common, so when I saw this one, I couldn't pass it up. They have a semi-circular ledge inside the cup that served to keep men's mustache's dry while sipping tea or coffee.

A little history: mustaches became very popular during the American Civil War and Victorian era. Men would melt a little bit of wax in a pan, and using a special comb, carefully apply the wax to their mustache. It was quite a problem for men prior to the invention of the cups, as the wax would soften, and sometimes melt and drip into the coffee or tea, and fair-haired men's mustaches would become stained. We're talking about some serious, heavy-duty mustaches in those days. Just one example:

John Haskell-King, Civil War Photo

The mustache cup was invented by an English potter named Harvey Adams in 1830. My cup has no manufacturer's mark on the bottom, so I have no way of knowing its' age.  It has a lovely design, though, of purple and pale yellow flowers.

For more history and information on mustache cups, click HERE.
Until next time, thanks for visiting!


Antiques And Teacups said...

So glad you did a neat post on moustache cups. I love them! And that's a great fun thing to collect...such a window on another era! I had a grandfather with one (a Brit wouldn't you know!) who called it his soup strainer! LOL!

Thanks for linking too! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Patti said...

Believe it or not, though I've been into teacups for years, I had never even heard of a moustache cup until about 2 years ago. I ran across one in an antique shop, so I asked the owner about it. Truly, one is never too old to learn!

Yours is lovely.

Have a great week, and a happy Thanksgiving.


Sandi@ Rose Chintz Cottage said...

What a great find, Cindy! I have yet to find one myself. Yours is very pretty. Thanks for sharing it with us and have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family this week.


Peggy said...

Hi Cindy, I have awarded you a Liebster award - please see today's post on my blog @
I enjoy your blog very much!

Trish - Sweetology101 said...

I have often wanted to include a mustache cup into my collection of pretties but I have kept that at bay for now b/c once I start I am sure I will have a hard time stopping and where oh where would I put them! HA! I find it humorous to think of that man drinking tea from that dainty flowered cup! Fantastic history, I loved reading this and shared it with my daughter!!

Kathryn Ross said...

Fun, Cindy! I have one I recently picked up - white with gold grape clusters across the top. It is large - perhaps better suited to coffee - and actually matches the commemorative plate that was made for our city's 150th anniversary this year. Though, they are totally unrelated. But, they do look nice displayed together on the shelf.


Charlotte said...

What a great history lesson...I never knew such a cup existed. Thank you for all this wonderful information. My husband has a mustache, so I know how handy a cup like that could be:)

Pretty and unique cup!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Ruth...Time Was Antiques said...

I love the photo! What a dude! A great post about such an interesting item! Thanks for your visit and Happy Thanksgiving.

Barb and Dell said...

Cindy, I have heard of mustache cups but have never seen one. Yours is so pretty. Thanks for the history lesson.

Au and Target said...

Now this is interesting! I have never seen one of these cups although I've heard of them Fascinating. And eeeew yuk on the mustache thing. So dirty-looking.

Johanna said...

Hi Cindy,
The mustache cup is a real treasure. Nice idea to keep the mustache clean. LOL
Best greetings, Johanna

cindy said...

I have seen a mustache cup before but don't own one. I love that you provided us with the history. I didn't know that about the tea staining the mustaches or changing it colour. Happy Thanksgiving

Jen @ Creating with the J's said...

How very interesting. Thanks for providing me with my "You learn something new everyday" moment!!!

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

How fun...and pretty! Thanks so much for your congratulations!Happy Thanksgiving!...hugs...Debbie

Karen said...

An interesting post Cindy, and a pretty little cup! Hard to imagine a big burly moustached guy sipping tea out of such a delicate vessel.

HHL said...

Cindy .. your cup is so nice ... that is great history!! Thanks for sharing it with us. Wishing you a blessed week and wonderful Thanksgiving...xo HHL

Zaa said...

Ha Ha .. What a fabulous find and what an original post... I love it .. And such a sweet cup for a man to possess... Bright Blessings

Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage said...

I've owned a few moustache cups in my time. And I've always been quite amused at the fact that the cups - which were meant for moustache-bearing men - were always so delicate and feminine looking. ;)

Thanks for joining Time Travel Thursday this week, Cindy.

I hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving!
Liz @ The Brambleberry Cottage

Ivy and Elephants said...

Now you have gone and done it. That's all I need is another obsession, I mean collection. I love it! Happy Thanksgiving my dear!


suziqu's thread works said...

Hi Cindy thank you for coming to my blog via Cindy! I so loved your fascinating story about the mostache cups - I love fine china and especially pink depression glass, I had never heard of or seen these cups before.
Wishing you a very happy Thanksgiving.
Hugs from downunder,

Alissa@CraftyEndeavor said...

That's awesome! I've never heard of such a thing! I want a mustache cup.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting! I never heard of those cups before, but thoroughly enjoyed reading and seeing it. I also love the little artwork inside the teacup! Sandi


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