Robert Haldane, Captain of the East Indiaman Haeslingfield, and his crew survived a hurricane in 1743 en route to Canton. Several bowls recording the shipwreck are known to exist and it is likely that they were either commissioned by or given as gifts to the crew once they returned to England; also on board was James Beech, an amateur artist. In addition to John James Jackson, for whom this bowl was made, it is known that bowls were also made for David Matthews (whose bowl was sold in London, 22 July 1969, lot 429), Robert Stockdall (whose bowl is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), and Edward Butcher (whose bowl is now in the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco). Each bowl has a somewhat different design and different inscription.
Stockdall's bowl, mentioned above, is illustrated by J.A. Lloyd Hyde, op.cit., pl.XVII, nos.63 and 65; by D. Howard and J. Ayers, op.cit., vol.I, p.220, no.217; by J. G. Phillips, op.cit., p.25, fig.16; and by F. et N. Hervouët and Y. Bruneau, op.cit., p.52, fig.2.46. Interestingly, Hervouët and Bruneau also refer to the present bowl, formerly in the Garbisch Collection, sold in New York in 1980. Another bowl, with the inscription The Haeslingfield in Distress, Sept.12, 1743 encircling the wrecked ship in the centre of the interior, but with no further inscription as to for whom it was made, was exhibited, A Tale of Three Cities, Canton, Shanghai & Hong Kong, London, 1997, Catalogue, p.31, no.21