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Ardalt-Lenwile sticker and backstamp

Ardalt / Lenwile was an American company that imported into America a variety of china-ware made in Japan. Most of these items fall into the "gift" category of goods, including statuettes, figurines, tableware, dishes, bowls, cups, jars, and vases. Many of the pieces are hand-painted in the well-known pseudo-European "export" style popular in 20th century Japan.

Ardalt, Inc. was located at 95 Madison Avenue, New York, New York. Both the incorporation of Ardalt and the registration of the trademark Lenwile occurred in 1945, very soon after the end or World War Two. The roots of the words Ardalt and Lenwile are not known, but they are presumed to be composites of the names of the company's principals. The company also used the monogram AA, which may well stand for Ard-Alt.

Ardalt-Lenwile chinaware was marked with a red and silver foil sticker reading "Hand Painted / Lenwile China / AA / Ardalt / Japan." The foil sticker is often missing from collected pieces, either due to intentional removal or because the items were washed in water.

Ardalt-Lenwile pieces may also be marked with an iron-red numerical backstamp. The numbers may constitute a dating code, but if so, the code has not yet been deciphered. The consensus opinion is that it is instead a catalogue number or SKU number.

Some pieces, notably figurines, are not co-branded Lenwile. On these, in addition to the numerical backstamp, there may also be an iron-red backstamp reading "Hand Painted / AA / Ardalt / Made [or Mede -- sic] in Japan" with no mention of Lenwile. Ardalt chinaware that is not co-branded Lenwile has also been found that originated in nations other than Japan.

The Ardalt-Lenwile Zodiac is the only known example of this company importing a divination tea cup.

catherine yronwode
curator, historian, and docent
The Mystic Tea Room

See Also

Pages in category "Ardalt-Lenwile"

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