Is there another T. Maddock character stein?

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  RDeSelms 5 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #27328 Reply

    Ron Gray

    To all,

    The web site states that the T. Maddock’s Sons Co. football stein is the only character stein made in the United States and that it is the only known character stein they produced. While searching for beer stein patents, I came across a bowling ball design patent 37298 issued to Harry S. Maddock on January 24, 1905. That is the same day he received his football design patent 37297 (see the September 2004 Featured Stein). I am having trouble posting a photo, but if you Google “Harry S. Maddock Design Patent 37298” you should be able to view the PDF file for the patent.

    I had never seen or heard of a T. Maddock bowling ball stein. I quickly looked at all my beer stein books that contained character steins and couldn’t find it there either. I then started looking in my collection of almost 400 beer stein auction catalogs that probably show around 200,000 beer steins. There were about 100 football steins, most of which were described as T. Maddock. The ones that weren’t noted as T. Maddock most likely were not marked. I saw about 50 bowling ball steins, most of which were noted as Schierholz, “Musterschutz” or Hutschenreuther. The few that weren’t marked or noted by manufacturer did not appear to be the T. Maddock bowling ball stein, although all photos were from the front of the stein rather than a profile which would show the handle too. The unique handle formed by three bowling pins would have been worthy of mentioning in the description, but it was not noted there.

    Has anybody seen this T. Maddock bowling ball stein? Can you provide us with the appropriate pictures of this beer stein? I would presume that they would have produced it after going to the trouble of obtaining the design patent.

  • #27329 Reply

    John Piet

    One of these should work:



  • #27341 Reply


    Hi Ron – I have 2 comments regarding your query, but no photos.

    first – Mike Wald and the authors of were both aware that Maddock did not make the only American character stein. White’s of Utica N.Y. made a Bismarck character and an Owl character. I know they knew this because I sent a photo of the Owl character to Mike Wald in the 1980’s. This was the first photo available and came from the great….great grandson of Emil White who happened to live in Rochester NY near me at the time.

    Second – Please note that football and bowling are American games and reasonable for an American maker to have designed and produced. Most (but not all) football steins made in Germany will be for soccer and rugby and those for bowling (10 pins) will have been made for Kegeln or Skittles (9 pins). Unfortunately I don’t have photos of any of these for you.

    • #27342 Reply



      You are correct that White’s Pottery of Utica made a character stein of Bismarck’s head and an owl. They are both shown in my White’s Pottery: A Pictorial Review by David Graci and published in 2010. Both appear to be shown in but I can’t pull up the photo to see if they identify the maker. The site does not show a listing for White’s Pottery of Utica. That web site is incomplete and can use some work. The listing for Thomas Maddock’s Sons Co. does say they were the only U.S. manufacturer of character steins and they are only known to have made the football stein. I did a Featured Stein article on it in September 2004.

      I have seen the soccer ball stein and it is easy to confuse for a bowling ball stein. The Rugby ball stein is sometimes described as a football and it is sometimes hard to distinguish it from an American football if it isn’t described properly. Sometimes the only clue is “Germany” on the bottom. I don’t know if the German version of bowling has a different name for the ball, but it is almost always described as a bowling ball in the auctions and book descriptions.

  • #27343 Reply



    Many years ago SCI Master Steinologist Roland Henschen pointed out in Prosit that the popular Mettlach PUG stein referred to as “The Bowling Gnomes” did not have “Bowling Gnomes” at all, but did have gnomes playing at Nine-Pins or Skittles. The only way to really tell is to be able to count the pins. If they were bowling, they would have been using 10-pins. The Mettlach Catalog describes this stein with décor number 727 as “Kegelscenen” which correctly translated should be “Nine-Pins or Skittles scenes”. Using the term “Bowling Ball” is expedient, but to be absolutely correct should be “Nine-Pins or Skittles Ball”. The German words “Kegel” = Pin and “Kugel” = ball, so I would guess that a Nine-Pins or Skittles ball would be a “Kegelkugel”.

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