This teapot depicts Cardiff Docks c.1900. The dwindling South Wales coal industry of the inter-war years led to mass unemployment, and so hundreds of thousands of people left Wales to find work. While some stayed in the UK to join other industries, many went further afield to Canada(like the donor, Ellyn's family), Australia and America.
"My grandmother, Maggie Williams Harris was given this teapot in 1927 when she was just about to board the ship which would take her family to Canada. My family had always lived in a small village called Blaenllechau above Ferndale and it was devastating for her to have to leave her first born child buried in a cemetery in Llanwonno. She had to sell all her china in order to pay for her ticket and as a last minute loving gesture, my grandfather, even though they were almost penniless, bough it for her near the Cardiff docks in a little antique (he called it a "tinker's") shop. She took it to Canada and when I moved to Wales, I brought it with me. So it has a made a round trip over the Atlantic Ocean.
It always had pride of place on my grandmother's mantle...it always reminded her of the last few moments that she was able to ever be in Wales"