Loading

This four-piece Tiffany and Company tea set was presented to Watts Cooke, Superintendent of Motive Power for the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western (DL&W) Railroad, by his employees on Christmas of 1866. It is embossed, "Presented to Watts Cooke/Superintendent of the Rolling Stock by the employees of the Delaware & Lackawanna R.R. Co./Christmas of 1866/City of Scranton, Pa." Watts Cooke, son of an Irish immigrant, was instrumental in the development of coal burning steam locomotives. Not only did he oversee the conversion of wood burning locomotives to coal burning for the DL&W, he began his own business manufacturing steam locomotives in the Scranton area. His company was bought out by Thomas Dickson, and became the foundation for the Dickson Locomotive Works. His brother, John Cooke, founded the Cooke Locomotive Works in Paterson, New Jersey.

This set not only represents the early history of the development of steam locomotives, it also represents the development of Scranton, Pennsylvania as part of a vibrant industrial area. Scranton was incorporated in 1866, the same year the tea set was presented. The railroad yard Watts Cooke worked operated for over a century and a half and was ultimately made part of Steamtown National Historic Site. This set was handed down by the Cooke family over the years and was bequeathed to the National Park Service in 2013.

Show lessRead more

Additional Items

Recommended

Home
Explore
Nearby
Profile