Manufacturer: Shenango China
User: Mayflower Doughnut Corporation
Dates of examples: 1939 – 1950s
Notes: Adolph Levitt opened the first Mayflower Doughnut Shop in 1931 at Broadway and West 45th Street in New York City. To attract customers, he featured a working doughnut machine in the shop's window. Eventually there were 18 Mayflower Doughnut Shops across the country; it was the country's first doughnut chain.
Eventually the company became the Doughnut Corporation of America. The last Mayflower seems to have gone out of business in the 1970s.
It was Levitt who adopted The Optimist's Creed as his own and had it printed on his doughnut boxes:
"As you ramble on through life, brother,
Whatever be your goal,
Keep your eye upon the doughnut,
And not upon the hole."
This saying is also printed on the more commonly seen Mayflower Doughnut china, especially the footed mugs.
White body with two color and rim pattern variations shown below. The red variation has images of donuts around its edge, the Mayflower ship, and its mascot, Donut Danny. The brown variation has a twig-like border and is topmarked only with the Mayflower ship and images of donuts.
For related info:
Mayflower Doughnut Corporation 2 by Sterling China
Mayflower Doughnut Corporation 3 by Iroquois China
Mayflower Doughnut Corporation 4 by Wallace China
Mayflower Doughnut Corporation 5 by Sterling China
ID and top plate photos contributed by Susan Phillips
Detail of plate with brown design contributed by kathleen
Cup photos contributed by itsagas
Doughnut shop photos contributed by ebay seller foshizzle!