Friday, December 7, 2007

Daryle Lambert: Red Wing Pottery Up North

I must have had enough of the South, because today I'd like you to know about Red Wing Pottery.

This company made mostly utilitarian pottery, and that is what their most valuable pieces will be. I am sure that their intention wasn't to have it collected, but today, some of the most avid collectors I have ever run across were the Red Wing Collectors. They will travel as far as it takes or pay whatever the amount required to get that special piece missing from their collection.

The Red Wing Pottery Factory began in 1878 in Minnesota and was later sold in the 1930's. This company did start to make Art Pottery in the 1920's, and it became quite popular. Today, some of it commands high prices. But it is the crocks, water coolers, and everyday pieces bring the real money.

My wife Vickie has a friend whose parents are avid collectors of Red Wing. She asked me if I would purchase a 50 gallon crock with the large Red Wing on it for them, if I ever found one. I have been looking, but to this date, I haven't found one for them.

Red Wing Stoneware, by Dan & Gail DePasquale and Larry Peterson, is a small, but excellent book that was put out in 1983 that is definitely worth owning.

I will give you some examples of the most important pieces, but first you need to know that their pieces are marked with different types of red wings or stenciled leaves and flowers. Most of their wares are also marked on the bottom.

Here are a few of the most sought after pieces: 15 gallon Beehive Jug with advertising could bring over $5000. Crock with fancy stenciling of leaves or flowers could command a price in exceess of $1500 and a water cooler may be a bargain at $3000.

I think that you can see that it may be well worth your while to keep your eyes peeled for Red Wing, and if you find that 50 gallon crock, be sure to call me.

-- Daryle.

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  1. really enjoyed your article, I'm just getting into pottery, and haven't started collecting a single brand yet, just laid hands on a brown and white 2 gal. crock, it has a gold band that separates the colors, with a blue 4-leaf clover with a 2 in the center of the design,any idea who made it?

  2. I'm hoping someone out there can answer a very simple question I have: Can I use my redwing bean pot to cook with just as I would any modern day cookware? Should I be concerned about lead? I know that might sound sacrilegious to some, but just wondering. I am not a collector. I inherited it from my mom. I would use it only for decoration if I found out it should not be used as it was intended.