© Memorial Hall Museum, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association
The potter Chauncey Thomas held this goal: to create "honest work, making a thing just what it pretends to be."1 A manifestation of Thomas' intention can be seen in the modestly-sized brown stoneware vase that he crafted at his Deerfield Pottery sometime between 1909 and 1911. A slightly-irregular gourd-like shape and rich brown glazes lend to the broad vessel a pleasing earthbound quality. Likely comprised of native Deerfield clay in combination with other clays, this piece was made by one of Deerfield's few professionally-trained Arts and Crafts artisans. Thomas' desire to be "honest" to his craft, to the nature of his materials, and to the intended function of his works parallels the aims of Arts and Crafts proponents across the nation.