The initials EW engraved under the base of this teapot possibly refer to a member of the Wistar or Warder families of Philadelphia, in whose lines this teapot descended. Margaret Bacon Carey descended from Jeremiah Warder and his son John Warder (1751-1828) of Philadelphia. Another ancestor was Caspar Wistar Haines (1762-1801), descendant of Caspar Wistar.
Joseph Richardson's surviving account books from 1733-40 and 1744-48 list fewer than 20 commissions for teapots, although many more "shugar dishes" and "milk potts" are recorded. Richardson's first known teapot (circa 1735-1740), now at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, has a bullet-form body and a slightly curved spout with a shell at the join. His second generation of teapots (circa 1740-1750) feature a more graceful apple-shaped body. An apple-form teapot with the same octagonally-cast spout and as the present lot is in the collection of Mrs. Walter M. Jeffords and illustrated in Martha Gandy Fales, Joseph Richardson and His Family, 1984, fig. 40, p. 85.