Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum


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Chamber Pot, a modern novelty item

Chamber Pot
Item claimed to be a Central Pacific Railroad brass chamber pot with fanciful "Notice to passengers. Do not empty this toilet out of train window."
Brass pot with 11 3/4" diameter flared lip (5 1/2" tall, 8" in diameter at bottom), soldered brass handle and attached enameled plate, as shown.  Commonly offered for sale at auction (also in a smaller size), with several variations of the nameplate shown, stating "toilet", "spittoon," or "chamber pot".
Often incorrectly described as a genuine CPRR antique, or an early reproduction.
Actually a late 20th century novelty item, manufactured with a protective plastic film covering the enameled plate (seen above reflecting light at the lower left edge).

Stephen E. Drew, Senior Curator, California State Railroad Museum states that "these spun-brass pots were made in England specifically as commemorative pieces for sale during the 1969 Gold Spike Centennial.  I believe the retail price in 1969 was about $30.  Depending on condition, I have seen these in local antique stores for $45 to $75."

Don't feel too badly if you've been taken in by a fake such as this – you're in good company.

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