A-Z of Ceramics - J is for Jiggers and Jolleys
Machines called jiggers and jolleys are used to make tableware in ceramics factories. The derivation of these strange names is unclear, though the word 'jigger' is actually used to describe all kinds of quite different mechanical devices used in many different occupations, including billiards, golf and printing.
By the 1880s, the machines were in regular use in the potteries. Their arrival was not welcomed by the workforce. Men in particular were opposed to their introduction, but found that if they did not work them, women were employed in their place. The devices are similar, both consisting of a profile which is used in conjunction with a plaster mould fitted to a rotating head. This can be seen in the diagram.