Rhode Island is a state that means two things in my mind: Gilded Age mansions and a famous manufacturing center for costume jewelry. Any tea connections in Rhode Island? I found a few!
• Rhode Island is well known for its production of costume jewelry. When I first started collecting tea-themed jewelry, I was pleased to learn how much of it had been produced with teapots and teacups as part of the design. JJ or Jonette was a jewelry company in Providence, Rhode Island, that made both the bracelet and earrings above. The company's owners, the Lisker brothers, got the name by combining the name of their parents, John and Etta, thus the "Jonette" name. Rhode Island continues to be known for its jewelry manufacturing today.
Photographs in the Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.
• A teahouse was also featured at the Berwind Estate in Newport, Rhode Island. Now who wouldn't have enjoyed being invited to tea in this teahouse? This linen postcard was mailed in 1942 and says, "Hello Tootsie. I am having a good time. Wish you were here too. I went swimming in the ocean, it's fun. Will be seeing you soon. Rita." Lucky Rita! (And if you're curious, as I was, here's a more modern photo of the teahouse, an image I found on Pinterest.)