Posted January 4, 2012
How were your holidays? Did you receive any unusual gifts? I received a mysterious gift. It was sitting on my desk when I returned to work Monday. It was accompanied by a hand written note that read:
I crafted this for you and your family. Enjoy it! Merry Christmas. Earl Simpson/ Brasstown, NC
I have attached a picture of this hammered copper vessel with a brass handle. I really like the piece. It looks like something you would find at Quaker Meadows in Morganton where my ancestors lived before the Revolutionary War.
I would like to send Mr. Simpson a thank you note but he didn’t leave a phone number or address and I haven’t been able to locate anyone in Brasstown by his name. Perhaps he put this together at John C. Campbell Craft School in the mountains at Brasstown but lives elsewhere.
At first I wasn’t sure what the gift was. WRAL Producer Scott Nagel said “it looks like a spittoon to me!” Auctioneer Leland Little set the record straight after stopping by our studios for an interview this morning. Leland pegged it as a ladle. I can definitely use a ladle more than a spittoon!
But then I heard from WRAL staffer Amanda Smith and I think she's got it right especially after checking images on Google. Here is Amanda's explanation:
"Your gift is a Turkish coffee pot. It makes extremely dark coffee and you don't filter out the grounds. The grounds settle to the bottom of your coffee cup and you just have to be careful not to stir up the coffee grounds when you are drinking. I have a Turkish coffee grinder if you want to try and make some coffee."
Mystery solved....I think!