Milk jug, 1765
Photo courtsey of the...
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Photo courtsey of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute

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Robert Sharp, Daniel Smith
Silver; H. 5 in. (12.7 cm), W. (spout to handle) 5 3/8 in. (13.7 cm), Diam. 2 3/4 in. (7.1 cm); Weight 267.5 g.
Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute; also Clark Art Institute (Williamstown, Mass.), 1955.335
Franklin's friend and physician in London, Dr. John Fothergill, gave him this jug, perhaps in 1775, engraved, "Keep bright the chain." That motto, adopted by Franklin from treaties with the Indians, refers to the bonds of friendship between allies. Here, Fothergill may be referring to their mutual efforts to maintain diplomatic relations between Britain and her colonies.
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