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August 2011 Issue Update
The RWCS bi-monthly newsletter August issue was scheduled to be mailed on Wednesday, August 31; however, it was delayed at the printer. The Newsletter will be mailed on Friday, September 2.
We apologize for the delay.
2011 Commemorative Shipping Update
The last group of original order commemoratives shipped Friday, August, 26 from Maple City Pottery. They were shipped via USPS Priority Mail.
For those members who returned their piece due to damage, replacements will begin shipping soon.
Red Wing Collectors Society Releases
by Larry Birks
Red Wing, MN – Red Wing Collectors Society member Larry Birks was the keynote presenter at the 2011 MidWinter GetTogether. Birks has spent over a year researching and documenting stoneware fakes found by himself, other RWCS members, antique shops, and auction houses.
If anyone finds additional stoneware fakes, please email the photos and information to the RWCS executive director, Stacy Wegner, email@example.com.
Ronald C. Schirmer, Ph.D. from Minnesota State University at Mankato kicked off Convention with his keynote presentation on ancient pottery from the Red Wing area. Other topics of educational sessions included an orientation for first timers, demonstrations by a working potter from Ephraim Pottery “throwing” pieces on a wheel, Red Wing 101, recent finds from the old pottery dump, Red Wing dinnerware, Pennsylvania’s Sherwood Brothers pottery, Red Wing Saffronware and using Facebook to enhance your collecting experience. The RWCS Foundation also held an info session about its plans to acquire a new, permanent home for the Red Wing Pottery Museum.
The year’s commemorative, which could be purchased only by Society members, was a miniature 4 gallon salt glaze churn. Two limited-edition commemoratives were also produced. These were mixed in with the regular commemoratives and all commemoratives were packaged in sealed boxes, so a small number of members were fortunate enough to get one. Of the 3,300 pieces made, 2965 had a cobalt target decoration, 300 had a butterfly and 35 had a hand-drawn bird.
Another unique aspect of the RWCS Convention was the participation of the younger generation through the KidsView program. The Society is on the leading edge of creating engaging and educational ways to get the younger generations involved in collecting. The focus on these RWCS members is an important part of the vision of the Society to ensure its continued existence and growth. Many interactive and challenging activities and seminars were offered for children of all ages, such as learning how to bid at an auction, what to look for in an antique, and several hands-on pottery creation projects.
To further complement KidsView, a new program was introduced at this year’s Convention geared towards helping young Red Wing collectors ages 15 to 20 to grow their interest in Red Wing. Participants learned more about Red Wing, developed new friendships, participated in hands-on activities and visited with dealers who were set up in the Pottery Place parking lot.
The Red Wing Collectors Society was founded in 1977 in Red Wing, Minn. and is devoted to educating people about all American pottery. There are more than 4,000 members worldwide. The Red Wing Potteries had diverse pottery lines that included stoneware, dinnerware and art pottery. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 800-977-7927, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or log on to www.redwingcollectors.org.
The 2011 Commemorative is a salt glazed butter churn. The churns were produced from 1877 through the late 1890s. They varied in size between 2 gallons and 10 gallons and came with many different hand-drawn cobalt decorations, such as ribcages, leaves, drop-8s, butterflies and targets. Although rare, salt glazed churns decorated with a cobalt bird also exist.
In 2011, the Red Wing Collectors Society produced three different versions of its Commemorative. Version "A" is 90% of the total made, version "B" is 9% and version "C" consists of 35 pieces to match the Convention’s 35th anniversary. No one knew which version they were going to receive until they selected a sealed box at the Convention or received their piece in the mail.
Version "A" has a lazy 8 target design, version "B" has a butterfly and version "C" has a bird. The Commemoratives are all stamped just like vintage churns. The stamp can appear on the front, back or either side. The stamp resembles a vintage slit oval stamp and reads "RWCS Convention 2011". The Commemoratives were produced by Maple City Pottery in Monmouth, Illinois. The churns were hand-turned, hand-decorated and glazed with hand-thrown salt. The churn lid was pressed in a two-piece mold.
The 2011 Special Commemorative is a transition butter churn. It is decorated with a hand-drawn cobalt leaf and resembles the zinc glaze appearance that the Red Wing Stoneware and Minnesota Stoneware companies introduced when they moved away from the salt glaze process from 1895 to 1900. The Specials are all stamped on the front. There were 18 Special Commemoratives made. They were given out as awards for displays, prizes and various drawings including a new drawing at the Thursday Night Auction. In addition, one was auctioned in the Commemorative Room.
It not too late to order your commemorative or come to Convention! Register at Red Wing High School each day of the Convention. Not able to attend call 800-977-7927 and order one to be mailed today.
We are just over a week away from “Stirring up the Memories” at Convention! I am sure many of you are already packing your bags and cars right now.
Just a few reminders before you head out the door: