Convention Program is mailing to members!

The RWCS Convention Program is mailing to members.

This is your printed resource for all the events and activities of the Convention. 

RWCS member Craig Orcutt is also working on the final details of the Convention app for download. Watch for more information on that soon.

10 Gallon Salt Glaze Butterfly Cooler Expected to be the Top Lot at Red Wing Collectors Society Convention July 11 Auction

Fronted-stamped “Red Wing Stoneware Company”, this 10 gallon salt glaze water cooler hand-decorated with a cobalt butterfly is expected be the top prize at the official RWCS members-only auction at the RWCS Convention. The event will be held at the River Bluff Education Center at 395 Guernsey Lane in Red Wing. A preview will be held from 2 to 4:15 p.m. on Thursday, July 11, with the auction beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Red Wing, MN – A signed Red Wing 10 gallon butterfly-decorated salt glaze water cooler is just one of the impressive pieces highlighting the official members-only auction at the Red Wing Collectors Society Convention, July 11-13 in Red Wing.

The RWCS will celebrate its 43rd Anniversary at this year’s Convention, which will unofficially begin on Wednesday, July 10 when the RWCS Foundation holds its “Wine-ing for Red Wing” fundraiser from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Pottery Museum of Red Wing at 240 Harrison Street, Red Wing. Admission for the fundraising event is $25; it will feature food and beverages, and silent and live auctions.

For the first time, this year’s RWCS Convention will be held at the River Bluff Education Center located adjacent to Red Wing High School. Located at 395 Guernsey Lane in Red Wing, River Bluff opened its doors in the fall of 2015 and is part of the Goodhue County Education District. The facility has a compact layout and enough rooms for all Convention events. Plus, the school’s gymnasium is air-conditioned, which will provide a comfortable place to hold the Convention Auction on Thursday, July 11 and Show & Sale on Saturday, July 13.

The RWCS Convention officially kicks off at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 11 with a keynote presentation on grading pottery and stoneware for the Society’s auction by RWCS Member Larry Birks. A long-time collector and past RWCS president, Birks will present on the need for auction grading and the definitions of the various damage the graders look for that cause the description to vary from what is shown on the RWCS Auction sheet. The seminar will also explain repairs, restorations and fakes that find their way across the grading table.

The official RWCS members-only auction*, which features more than 200 pieces consigned by members, will take place at 4:30 that evening in River Bluff’s gymnasium. Onsite registration will be available to become a member. The auction preview will be open from 2 to 4:15 p.m. Catalogs are for sale for $5 in advance at the Pottery Museum of Red Wing or can be purchased at the auction itself.

RWCS members will also have their lineup of usual favorites to attend during Convention, including street sales held at Red Wing’s historic Pottery Place, other stoneware and pottery auctions held on Tuesday and Wednesday, educational seminars and the official RWCS Show & Sale at the River Bluff gymnasium that begins for members at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 13. It opens FREE to the public from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. In addition to these activities, an early evening social will feature food, trivia and fun from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Friday, July 12 in the River Bluff cafeteria.

A reunion of the iconic Red Wing stoneware “Boy with Crock” statues is being held in the Display Room at the Red Wing Collectors Society’s Annual Convention this summer (Thursday, July 11 through Saturday, July 13). There are at least 14 of these impressive figurines in existence, but more are likely more out there. Collectors hoping all of the figurines can attend for what will surely be an epic display of incredible handcrafted folk art stoneware.

Other Convention activities include a “Crock Hunt” scavenger hunt around Red Wing and a special display room at River Bluff where members create their own unique displays of Red Wing items for the education and enjoyment of attendees. This year the Convention Display Room will feature a reunion of the coveted Red Wing stoneware “Boy with Crock” statues.

If you have one of these statues, please contact RWCS Executive Director Stacy Wegner at for more details about the display. Even if you can’t make it to Convention, the RWCS would like to work with you to bring your Boy with Crock back to Red Wing for this brief appearance. The identities of all Boy with Crock owners will be kept confidential.

An annual commemorative will be unveiled and distributed to members beginning Thursday, July 11. The commemorative piece is a closely guarded secret and there is much speculation as to what the piece will be each year. It is a miniature replica of a Red Wing pottery item with a limited number made. Last year’s commemorative was a flower pot.

Breakout education sessions scheduled for Friday, July 12 at the River Bluff Education Center will offer a great selection of diverse topics. The presentations are listed below; check out the “Education Seminars” page on the Convention section of the RWCS website for more detailed descriptions

  • Patents and Stoneware by Marv Juel.
  • The Journey of Collecting Red Wing by RWCS Hall of Famer Larry Peterson and Gary Tyc.
  • Collecting on a Budget by Todd Avery.
  • The Dump Finds from the Past by RWCS Hall of Famer Steve Showers and his wife, Phyllis.
  • Digging Up the Past by Red Wing Dump Diggers Paul Boudin & Connie Mathison.
  • Anniversary Line Dinnerware by RWCS Hall of Famers Terry Moe & Larry Roschen.
  • Early Red Wing Clay Industries and Marketing – from Salt and Albany to the Dawn of Zinc by Dr. Danaè R. Quirk Dorr.
  • “Hat’s Off To History” 150 years of Goodhue County History by Robin Wipperling, Goodhue County Historical Society Executive Director.
  • The Potter, the Myth and the Reality by Potter Richard Spiller.
  • Red Wing Bowls by Brent Mischke.

Another unique aspect of the RWCS Convention is 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. Children ages 3-12 will have several hands-on pottery creation projects and a Kids’ Auction to participate in from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, July 12 at Red Wing Art Reach and the Goodhue County Historical Society (GCHS), which is located at 1166 Oak Street in Red Wing.

To further complement KidsView, the RWCS has a Young Collectors program for Red Wing collectors ages 13 to 20 grow their interest in Red Wing. This is a great opportunity to learn more about Red Wing, develop new friendships through peer-to-peer discussion groups and participate in hands-on activities. Young Collectors activities will be held at the GCHS from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 11.

The 2019 RWCS Convention is sponsored by Red Wing Shoes, Larry’s Jugs Antiques, Red Wing Brewery, Red Wing Stoneware Co., Stockholm Pie Plate Cafe’ & General Store, Red Wing Framing & Fine Art Printing, Musty Barnhart Agency, Xcel Energy and First State Bank of Red Wing. To learn more about all the events and activities of the RWCS Convention, visit the RWCS website event page for the Convention.

The RWCS can also be followed on Twitter and on Facebook. Like most antique collecting clubs, attracting young new collectors has been a challenge for the RWCS. A bright spot in the organizations recruiting efforts has come through the RWCS Facebook Chapter, which is a highly active page where recent finds are shared, questions are answered and pieces are bought and sold by new and advanced collectors alike. To join the conversation, visit

* Registering onsite to attend the RWCS Convention costs $50 per person; kids 15 and under are free. Annual membership in the Red Wing Collectors Society also costs $35 and includes five full-color newsletters mailed to your home throughout the year. The RWCS was founded in 1977 in Red Wing and there are more than 3,000 members worldwide. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 651-388-4004, e-mail or log on to You can also join the RWCS on Facebook and follow it on Twitter at @RWCollectors. 


April Newsletter mailing update

Update from RWCS Newsletter Editor Rick Natynski:

Members, the April RWCS Newsletter printed on April 22 and was supposed to mail out the following day, but there was a significant delay at the fulfillment house the printer uses. At this point, most members have not received a newsletter yet. The printer spoke with a post office rep on Thursday and according to them, the newsletters have finally been received and should be delivered to mailboxes soon.

I apologize deeply for this delay. I have informed the printer that this is unacceptable and they agreed. They will discontinue their relationship with this particular mail house going forward.

In the meantime, just as a reminder, the April issue has been uploaded to the members-only page on the RWCS website and can be viewed there by all members in good standing.

Please note that three members have advertised upcoming auctions on May 25, May 27 and June 1. Click here to view these and all the other classified ads. Each have quality items, so you’ll want to check it out! If you have any problems accessing the members-only page, please contact Stacy Wegner at the RWCS office on Monday. Again, my apologies!

Rick Natynski


RED WING, MN – Hundreds of stoneware and pottery collectors are gearing up for the annual Red Wing Collectors Society (RWCS) MidWinter GetTogether, which will be held at the Isle Resort and Casino in Bettendorf, IA Feb. 22-23. This will be first time a club event will be held in the Quad Cities in the organization’s 42-year history.

Founded in 1977, the RWCS is composed of than 3,000 members worldwide who collect stoneware crocks, jugs, churns, dinnerware and art pottery manufactured in Red Wing from the 1880s to 1960s.

The event, which is focused around on buying, selling, education and fun with old and new friends alike, will kick off with a Friday night social for attendees in the hotel’s Salon B ballroom from 6 to 8 p.m. on Feb. 22. But many attendees will start selling stoneware and pottery from their hotel rooms in the north tower well before that – some starting as early as Tuesday, Feb. 19. A formal Show & Sale will run from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23 followed by an auction at 4:30 p.m. – both of which are open to the public. More information about the auction can be found at Whether you’re new to collecting Red Wing or an experienced collector, anyone and everyone is invited to attend this fun event and find a new piece for their collection.

Education is also a major focus of the event. Starting at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23, collector Danae Quirk Dorr will give a keynote presentation on “Red Wing Clay Industries & Marketing – From Salt and Albany to the Dawn of Zinc”. Danae will cover products produced and sold by Red Wing Stoneware Co., Minnesota Stoneware Co., North Star Stoneware Co., and Union Stoneware Co. through the 1800s. A highly informative and enthusiastic speaker, Danae is vice president of the RWCS Facebook Chapter and a member of the RWCS Foundation Board.

After that, the following hour-long education sessions will begin at 9:30 a.m. and 10:40 a.m., separated by a 10-minute break:

  • “Pouring and Glazing Pottery” by Glenn Beall. In addition to being the former RWCS Education Manager, Glenn has been pouring and glazing his own pottery for the past nine years and he’s excited to share the ‘ins and outs’ of pottery production.
  • “Salt Glaze Stoneware” by Rick Natynski. Best known for the high quality RWCS Newsletter that he’s produced for the past 12 years, Rick has collected Red Wing salt glaze for nearly 20 years. He’ll share more than 200 photos – many featuring the best pieces Red Wing ever turned out.
  • “Auction Grading: Identifying Stoneware Damage, Restorations and Fakes” by Larry Birks. A stoneware collector since the late 1970s, Larry served as RWCS President from 2014 to 2016. In addition to grading items for the RWCS Thursday Night Convention Auction for several years, he has presented seminars on “faked advertising” stoneware to the RWCS, Collectors of Illinois Pottery & Stoneware (COIPS) and the Blue and White Collectors Club. “Knowing what to look for when buying a piece of stoneware will help everyone know whether the ‘value asked is the value bought!’” Larry says.
  • “Red Wing Dinnerware” by Terry Moe & Larry Roschen. Experts in the field of Red Wing dinnerware, both Terry and Larry are RWCS Hall of Famers. They have presented countless seminars on the many dinnerware lines produced by the Red Wing Potteries. Their sessions have a loyal following at every RWCS event, which will surely be the case again in 2019.

All activities will be held at the Isle Casino Hotel at 1800 Isle Parkway in Bettendorf, IA. Visit to register or learn more about the MidWinter GetTogether.

This event will help tie collectors over until the 42nd annual Red Wing Collectors Society Summer Convention, which slated for July 12-14 in Red Wing, MN. Annual membership in the RWCS costs only $35 and includes five 16-page full-color newsletters mailed to your home throughout the year. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 651-388-4004, e-mail or log on to You can also join the RWCS on Facebook and follow it on Twitter at @RWCollectors

Thank you to our advertisers!


RWCS GEAR – DIGGIN Shirts Available NOW!



Deadline to order January 23, 2019

RWCS members can pre-order to pick up at MidWinter or have it mailed after the event!

CLICK HERE to pre order to recieve in two ways!

  1. Pay and Pick up at MidWinter 2019 in Bettendorf, IA.
  2. Have it mailed after MidWinter!. Members ordering for mail will be contacted by the RWCS to make payment arrangements.


In addition to the Diggin’ shirts members attending MidWinter will be able to order one of the fashion polo shirts below and purchase a limited line of hats, pens, and other gear!



2019 RWCS Convention to be Held at River Bluff Education Center in Red Wing, MN.

RED WING, MN – The Red Wing Collectors Society Annual Convention, July 11-13, 2019 will be held all in one place and in a new location at Goodhue County Education District’s (GCED) River Bluff Education Center (RBEC) located adjacent to Red Wing High School in Red Wing, MN.

For the past two years, the Red Wing Collectors Society’s (RWCS) Convention has been held in two venues the Minnesota State College Southeast’s Red Wing Campus and the Red Wing National Guard Armory. Prior to that, the Convention was held at the Red Wing High School.

With more time to plan for 2019, the RWCS conducted an attendee survey during the 2018 Convention. The survey indicated that while members enjoyed the College’s compact facility layout and the adult friendly furnishings, many respondents said that they were unhappy traveling to a second venue without air conditioning for the Auction and Show & Sale. With this member feedback, the RWCS Board of Directors formed a committee to review any site in the Red Wing area. The committee focused on two main features for a facility. One, it had the compact feel of the College and two, large enough to hold all the Convention events with special consideration that the room used for Auction and Show & Sale would have air conditioning.

“The committee’s objective was to leave no stone unturned when seeking the right place to hold the 2019 Convention activities like Chapter meetings, educational seminars, display, Auction, and Show & Sale.” stated Paul Wichert, RWCS President.

This past fall, the committee researched nearly 20 different venue options and toured many of them. The River Bluff facility had been on the RWCS short list two years ago, but time constraints in 2017 made a full evaluation of the facility difficult. As the committee began to narrow down the list, River Bluff once again bubbled to the top as an all-inclusive location with the small venue feel of the College and Armory. Stacy Wegner, RWCS Executive Director, and the committee approached Cherie Johnson, Executive Director at the River Bluff Education Center. Working closely with Cherie, the committee, and several key RWCS members, the River Bluff facility would be a fit for the 2019 Convention. The facility had a compact layout, enough rooms for all events, and the gym has air conditioning.

“We are very excited to host the RWCS Convention 2019” said Cherie Johnson, Executive Director, RBEC. “As director of the GCED I spearheaded the build of River Bluff and I kept the RWCS Convention in the back of my mind when Goodhue County began the building process. I knew our school would be a fit, we just needed more time to plan the Convention within the building.”

River Bluff Education Center (RBEC) opened its doors in the fall of 2015 and is part of the Goodhue County Education District. The GCED is a group of six districts in southeastern Minnesota that work together to provide educational services and funding for a variety of special education programs, staff development, and alternative school services.

The RWCS can’t thank Minnesota State College and the Red Wing National Guard Armory enough for their warm hospitality and support these past two years. Both facilities and their staffs were a pleasure to work with.

River Bluff’s new construction will serve as an excellent venue for all the 2019 Convention events. Stacy Wegner, RWCS Executive Director, along with other key managers, position chairs, and volunteers have already begun laying the ground work for the move to River Bluff.

“I am excited to be working with Cherie and her staff to make the smooth transition to River Bluff for the 2019 Convention. The school’s compact layout will keep the feeling of the college, but bring all the convention events into one building. Cherie’s an RWCS member too, so her Convention attendee experience will be a key piece in planning for the Convention.” said Stacy Wegner, Executive Director, RWCS.

RWCS members are encouraged to attend MidWinter, February 22-24, 2019 in Bettendorf, IA at the Isle of Capri to get all the latest information on Convention! Wegner will share more details about the 2019 Convention during the event’s Welcome Session slated for Saturday, February 23, 2019.

Annual membership in the Red Wing Collectors Society costs only $35 and includes six 16-page full-color newsletters mailed to your home throughout the year. The RWCS was founded in 1977 in Red Wing and there are more than 3,000 members worldwide. For more information or to become a member, call the RWCS business office at 651-388-4004, e-mail or log on to You can also follow the RWCS on Facebook at and Twitter at @RWCollectors.

RWCS Office Closed December 24, 2018 – January 1, 2019

The Red Wing Collectors Society Business office will be close from Christmas Eve Monday, December 24, 2018 through New Years Day Tuesday, January 1, 2019.

If you  would like to renew your membership, register for MidWinter, or have questions about your membership status please email the office at

Have a wonderful holiday season!


Ray Reiss Inducted in to RWCS Hall of Fame

Red Wing, MN – The Red Wing Collectors Society inducted RWCS Member Ray Reiss into their membership Hall of Fame on Friday, July 13 during their Annual Business Meeting.

Reiss was introducted as the 2018 RWCS Hall of Fame by Wayne Bell a fellow collector. Wayne shared his thoughts about Reiss and his contribution to Red Wing collectors everywhere. The Hall of Fame Plaque states:

Ray Reiss – 2018

Ray Reiss of Chicago, Illinois, Red Wing Collectors Society Member #5996, has made significant contributions to the Red Wing Collectors Society. Ray is hereby inducted into the Red Wing Collectors Society Hall of Fame this 13th day of July, 2018 in recognition of these lifetime achievements:

  • Joined the Red Wing Collectors Society in June 1977
  • Charter Member Red Wing Collectors Society
  • Passionate collector, student and researcher of Red Wing clay products for more than 30 years
  • Presented educational seminars at RWCS Conventions for many years
  • Authored, photographed & published Red Wing Art Pottery and Red Wing Art Pottery Two
  • Authored, photographed & published Red Wing Dinnerware Price and Identification Guide

Ray’s tedious research and passionate interest in Red Wing greatly contributed to the surge in collecting art pottery in the 1990’s. He produced two wonderful coffee table style books, Red Wing Art Pottery and Red Wing Art Pottery Two, that exemplified his exceptional photography skills. Ray did a massive amount of research, engaging many in the Red Wing collector community and past employees of the Red Wing Potteries who shared valuable knowledge and included this information in those books. Red Wing Dinnerware Price and Identification Guide, an additional booklet, included his beautiful photographs of individual pieces of dinnerware. This work was very well organized and provided updated information and price references for Red Wing dinnerware items.

Ray’s work created and encouraged widespread interest in collecting Red Wing art pottery and dinnerware items and most certainly brought new collectors to the RWCS. His passions for collecting and for sharing his extensive research have benefitted countless collectors.

The Red Wing Collectors Society is delighted to welcome Ray Reiss into the RWCS Hall of Fame.

2018 Convention Commemorative unveiled!

Red Wing, MN –

The Red Wing Collectors Society celebrates its 42nd Convention in 2018. The 2018 RWCS Convention Commemorative is a reproduction of the popular 2-inch glazed flower pot made by Red Wing Pottery. Three versions of the Commemorative were produced: Version A is 90 percent of total production, Version B is 9 percent and 39 Version C pieces were made. Members received these versions at random at Convention and in the mail.

New and Current members are still able to order their 2018 Commemorative!

Log into the RWCS Website online membership services or call the office at 651-388-4004 until July 14. If you call, you may need to leave a message, your call will be returned as quickly as possible and messages will guarentee your order!

The original 2-inch glazed flower pots are highly sought after by collectors, with the more unique colors often commanding hundreds of dollars when offered for sale. Collectors often refer to the flower pots as salesman samples. They came in simple colors like black and white, and unique colors such as Hyacinth and the Silver Green and Burnt Orange Crystalline glazes. They are available in more than 30 color combinations. Some have a different color inside and outside.

Version A is green with a cream interior. Version B is all pink and Version C is blue with a white interior. The pots are marked on the bottom “RWCS July 12-14, 2018”. They were pressed at Rowe Pottery in Cambridge, WI.

Rowe Pottery also produced a saucer for the flower pots as the 2018 Commemorative Accessory piece.

The Special Commemorative is a miniature flower pot in the style made by the Minnesota Stoneware Company. They were originally made in bisque and Albany slip and are very hard to find in the 2-inch size. A saucer is included with the pot. Eighteen specials were made. Half are bisque and half are Albany slip. Both the pot and saucer were hand-turned at Rowe Pottery. The bisque pots were awarded to Convention Display winners; the Albany slip pots were given away as prizes for several drawings at Convention. One of each was silent-auctioned in the Commemorative Room at Convention.

Twelve flower pots were decorated with a flower and glazed white to represent KidsView and the Young Collectors. These pots were auctioned at Convention and MidWinter with the proceeds going to support the youth program activities.


2018 Convention Attendee Info!

2018 Convention Attendees!

We are just a week away from the Convention. Many of you are already packing your bags and cars right now.

The RWCS Website and the Convention Supplement are your sources for all your Convention information.

Have the Convention at your fingertips on your mobile device. Just visit your app store and download IN ANY EVENT. If you already have the app on your device, it should automatically update it too.

Here are the website links to plan your Convention Experience:

Schedule See the latest times and locations for all the events and activities.

Scavenger Hunt – Check out the locations and bring the form to the Member Meet Up at the College Friday Evening.

Wednesday, July 11

  • 11:00 am – 3:00 pm Pre-registered pick up – Pottery Museum of Red Wing
    • Be sure to pick up your Convention Program
  • Pottery Museum of Red Wing Events
    • 6:00 pm– 9:00pm – WINE-ing for Red Wing Pottery Museum of Red Wing

Thursday, July 12 – Minnesota State College Southeast (308 Pioneer Road)

  • Commemorative Unveiled 
  • Keynote: Historic Pottery Industry of Red Wing & Goodhue County Story map by Leanne Knott
  • RWCS Gear SALES & Pick up at College Only
  • Chapter Meetings 
  • Young Collectors
    • Viewing at 2:00 pm 
    • Live auction at 4:30 pm 
    • Concessions by Red Wing High School Volleyball 
    • Parking and Shuttle from Minnesota Correctional Facility watch for signs

Friday, July 13 – Minnesota State College Southeast

  • Shared Interest Groups 9am
  • RWCS Gear SALES & Pick up at College Only
  • Educational Seminars being at 10am 
  • Kids View – 10am – 2pm 
  • Annual Business Meeting 3:15pm 
  • Member Meet Up in the College Commons 5:00 – 6:30pm
    Sponsored by: Hallstrom’s Florist and Greenhouse and Sturdiwheat Foods
    Scavenger Hunt Winners, Trivia Contest, Root Beer floats and light appetizers

Saturday, July 14 – Red Wing National Guard Armory

  • Show and Sale – Saturday, concessions by Red Wing High School Volleyball
    • Parking and Shuttle from Minnesota Correctional Facility watch for signs
  • Banquet – Saturday Night at Mount Frontenac Golf Course– tickets still available
  • Commemorative Pick Up

Other Convention Information:

  • Display – Thursday and Friday at the College
  • Chapter Challenge Silent Auction Thursday and Friday at the College

Information about the City of Red Wing:

  • Things to do in Red Wing – Coming for week or looking for other events in Red Wing? There’s events like amateur baseball games, ice cream socials and concerts in the park!
  • Directions to Events – Includes information on finding the Minnesota State College and the Red Wing National Guard Armory.
  • City of Red Wing Information – All the links to City of Red Wing tourism and visitor information

One last reminder; don’t forget to bring your red badge holder and volunteer pin! The RWCS Board and I  are looking forward to seeing all of you in Red Wing. Safe travels!

Stacy Wegner
Executive Director, RWCS