RWCS will consider membership dues increase at Annual Meeting

The RWCS Board of Directors voted to ask the membership to increase membership dues $10 beginning August 1, 2013.  This step was not taken lightly and followed a lengthy discussion. 

The Board recognizes that this might not the best time, economically, to ask the membership to increase dues.  There are a number of reasons the Board has taken this action, but, the number one reason is that the cost of membership does not cover the cost of the RWCS Newsletter.  It needs to be understood that the overall annual cost of the Newsletter is actually $10,000 less than it was in 2006, but because of the decline in membership, the per-issue cost of the Newsletter has increased. The Board even went to a 4-year contract vs. a 2-year contract to save additional dollars. Up until now, the Board was able to make up the difference in cost through other means; however, this is no longer possible with the decline in membership.  Additionally, as you know, prices for everything have generally increased steadily.

The RWCS Board has done an excellent job in reducing expenditures so dues would not increase in past years.  Here are some facts one should be aware of about budget cuts the Board made in the past to avoid a dues increase:

  1. The spring Board meeting was eliminated in 2008 and this practice continues.
  2. The fall executive meeting and full Board meeting were modified from actual face-to-face meetings to conference call in 2009.
  3. Board meals and travel reimbursement for all meetings and  conferences was eliminated in 2010
  4. The administrative assistant position was eliminated in 2011
  5. Since 2004, the RWCS expenditures were reduced by 27%
  6. While office supplies have increased in price, we have reduced office expenditures for supplies, equipment, postage, printing, etc by 10% since 2006

If the membership approved the dues increase at the Annual Business Meeting at the 2013 Convention in July, the Board would encourage members to renew their membership for two years before the dues increase goes into effect on August 1, 2013


Golden State Chapter Annual Benefit Auction – March 9 – Galt, CA

Spring Chapter Gathering

Saturday, March 9th

1:00 pm

All Red Wing Collectors in California and those passing through, are invited to join other Red Wing Collectors at the Golden State Red Wing meeting in Galt, CA!

Lot of exciting things are planned for the gathering:

  • Show and Tell about your Red Wing piece
  • Networking with other collectors
  • Great food and drinks (bring something for the BBQ and a dish to pass)

2012 event auctioneer

Annual RWCS Foundation and Kids View Benefit Auction!
Help us raise money to support the Red Wing Pottery Museum through the RWCS Foundation and the Convention and MidWinter Kids View Program. Everyone is invited to bring a piece to this fundraising auction!

For more information on attending contact:

Bruce Cameron, President

Mike Robinson

2012 auction lots

Members meeting and greeting

Helen Bell, RWCS Charter Member Dies

Helen E. Bell, 92

Helen Elizabeth Bell, 92, died Monday, Feb. 11, at Seminary Home.
Published by the Red Wing Republican Eagle, Tuesday, Feb. 12

She was born Sept. 19, 1920, at her grandmother Barry’s house in Goodhue, Minn., the daughter of Daniel and Loretta (Barry) Bell. She moved with her family to Red Wing when she was 6 weeks old.

Helen was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Red Wing all of her life. She was active in the parish community and served as a Eucharistic minister, was chairwoman of liturgical committee for 20 years, was president of the John Ireland Club, and served as secretary of the parish council. She taught Christian doctrine to the primary grades, mainly 1st and 2nd graders, for many years, and later taught Bible study to the teenagers in the Faith Formation program. She was a Girl Scout leader for 7th and 8th graders as they worked for their special Marian Award. Helen organized and led Bible study groups for 50 years.

Helen was the parish historian for 25 years, influential in organizing and collecting church archives. She was appointed to serve on a fundraising committee, along with Willis Zignego and Joe Drake, for the building of the third Catholic Church on 7th Street. She also wrote a column in the parish newspaper called “Echoes of the Past.”

In 1960, Helen made her vows with Caritas Christi, a secular institute for women dedicated in the love of Jesus to do apostolic work.

Helen started her education when she was enrolled in 1st grade at St. Joseph Catholic School in 1927. She graduated from 8th grade and then moved on to Central High School, graduating in 1938. At the time of graduation, she received membership in the National Honor Society. In 1939, Helen decided to become a nurse and enrolled at St. Joseph Hospital in St. Paul for the 3- year program, graduating in 1942. She worked for some time in the newborn nursery at the hospital and decided to further her education in obstetrics. She did her post-graduate work at Margaret Hague Hospital in Jersey City, N.J. Following that, she returned to Minnesota and was employed at St. Marys Hospital in Rochester for 3 months in the labor and delivery department while she waited for an opening to work and care for newborn infants. The time came and she became charge nurse for premature infants. She remained there for 7 years and then went back to St. Joseph Hospital to work with preemies again.

In 1950, Helen received her degree from the University of Minnesota for nursing education, graduating with honors. She then became a member of the faculty at St. Catherine College, teaching medical nursing in the 3- and 4-year programs. In 1956, Helen became the director of nursing at the vocational school in Red Wing where she held that position for 27 years. It was a happy assignment because she had the opportunity of working with and encouraging women of all ages to become LPNs. Friendships were formed between Helen and the students that lasted even until today. They were the joys of Helen’s life.

During her years in Red Wing, Helen was very interested in community affairs. She was on the board of the American Cancer Society and American Heart Association; she served on the public library board; and she was on the faculty/advisory board for the vocational school. For many years, Helen played Mrs. Santa Claus for the City of Red Wing. Helen was a member of the Goodhue County Historical Society, serving on the women’s committee and working on newsletters.

Helen was recognized and received many awards. The Jaycees named her Educator of the Year in 1982. That same year, she received the WCCO Good Neighbor Award. She was named to the Wall of Honor at Central High School through the SOAR program.

In 1970, a group got together at the St. James Hotel Victorian Room to discuss Red Wing pottery. That evening, after much excitement and discussion, the Red Wing Collectors Society was formed. Helen was a charter member and extremely active in the yearly conventions. She had given the keynote speech, spoken at four banquets, and had presented educational sessions for members. She usually spoke under the title “Memories of a Pottery Worker’s Daughter.” Helen was elected to the Hall of Fame of the Society.

Helen is survived by twin grand-nieces, Denise and Debra Thompson of Texas; godchildren, Ann (Barry) Andersen, Patrick Maranda, Lynn (Steele) Stark, and Burnette Dressen; the Pat and Lois Barry family and the Edward and Mary Maranda family; many other cousins and friends.

Preceding Helen in death were her parents; her infant twin brother; an older brother, Bill Bell; and niece, Diane Thompson.

Mass of the Resurrection will be 11 a. m. Thursday, Feb. 14, at the Church of St. Joseph with Father Thomas Kommers officiating. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery. Visitation will be for 1 hour prior to the service at the church. Memorials preferred to Mayo Health Systems Red Wing Area Hospice or donor’s choice.

Mahn Family Funeral Home, Bodelson-Mahn Chapel, is handling arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Badger Chapter Plans Bus Trip to Schleich Museum following MidWinter

The RWCS Badger Chapter is sponsoring a MidWinter one day bus tour to visit the Schleich Pottery Museum on Sunday February 10th.  We will leave from the 2013 RWCS GetTogether convention – Holiday Inn.

Come see the museum before it moves to its’ new home in Red Wing!


Sunday February 10th  

7:00am   Leave Des Moines
10:30am   Arrive Schleich museum
2:30pm   Leave museum
6:00pm   Arrive back in Des Moines – Holiday Inn

Members may stay an additional night at the Holiday Inn-Des Moines at the special MidWinter convention rate. 

This tour is limited to the first 47 RWCS members. Cost is based on the number of people. This is a luxury coach tour and there is a restroom on board.

The cost for 47 passengers is $35 per person, for 25 passengers is $50 person. We need a minimum of 25 people but we believe we can fill the bus. Don’t forget to bring your camera.

These prices are for the bus only, you are on your own for lunch.  Entrance to the museum is by donation.  The tour cost does not include the donation.

If you have any questions, or would like to join us, please call Bob Morawski, Badger Chapter President & RWCS Commemorative Chairman, at 262 853 8269 or email You will need to reserve a seat.

Get the word out, talk it up and let’s fill the bus.  It’ll be a great time. I guarantee it!

Bob Morawski
President, RWCS Badger Chapter

– Bob

RWCS Gears up for MidWinter – Feb. 8-10 – Des Moines, IA


RED WING, MN. – Lovers of Red Wing stoneware and pottery will have the opportunity to quench their thirst for that next great treasure when they attend the Red Wing Collectors Society’s (RWCS) Annual MidWinter GetTogether in Des Moines from Feb. 8-10.

The RWCS is devoted to those who collect a diverse line of crocks, jugs, churns, dinnerware and art pottery manufactured in Red Wing from the 1880s to 1960s. Hundreds of people from around the country are expected to attend the February event, which will help tie collectors over until the next RWCS National Convention in Red Wing in July. These two events serve as great opportunities for members to buy and sell Red Wing and learn about the history of the potteries that once operated in Red Wing, their diverse production lines and the impact they had on the American pottery industry.

The MidWinter GetTogether includes a number of other organized activities like a reception from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 8. The theme of this year’s event is “Wild, Wild West: The Red Wing Watering Hole”.  Attendees are encouraged to don their cowboy hats, leather chaps, spurs and over-sized belt buckles to take part in the fun.

Highlighting this year’s event will be a keynote presentation from RWCS member and longtime Red Wing Pottery Dump Digger Dennis Nygaard, who will show and describe many of the new finds he’s made over the past year-and-a-half, which has been one of his most productive periods since he began digging in the dump in 1980.

More educational sessions will be held for members following the keynote presentations, including a discussion from the RWCS Foundation, which announced on Dec. 28 that it had officially purchased a portion of the Pottery Place Annex building in Red Wing, MN to house the new Red Wing Pottery Museum. Other educational topics will include an introduction to Red Wing dinnerware, the history of Boone, Iowa’s Moingona Pottery and the 1920 art pottery experiment by Iowa State College (now Iowa State University). In addition, the RWCS KidsView education program will have activities that will teach younger collectors about Red Wing’s “Wild West” story.

Many attendees sell Red Wing wares from their hotel rooms during the MidWinter GetTogether. A formal Show & Sale will run from 1:30 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 9 followed by an auction at 6 p.m. – both of which are open to the public. Whether you’re new to collecting Red Wing or an experienced collector, there’s something for everyone at the MidWinter GetTogether.

All activities will be held at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites, 4800 Merle Hay Road, in Des Moines, Iowa.  For more information on the MidWinter GetTogether, or the annual Red Wing Collectors Society Summer Convention, which is slated for July 11-13 in Red Wing, Minn., log on to

Annual membership in the Red Wing Collectors Society costs only $25 and includes six 16-page full-color newsletters mailed to your home throughout the year. 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 or log on to You can also join the RWCS on Facebook and follow it on Twitter at

Bob Downs, Maple City Pottery, dies

The Red Wing Collectors Society is saddened by the death of “Master Potter” Robert Downs of Maple City Pottery.

Since 2010, Bob Downs and his team at Maple City Pottery have produced the Red Wing Collectors Society annual Convention Commemorative. In addition, Downs has given several educational seminars at both at the RWCS MidWinter GetTogether and National Convention. He shared his knowledge about pottery production and the commemorative production process.

Obituary Notice published on

Daily Review Atlas (Monmouth, IL)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 @ 12:23 PM

Monmouth, IL – Robert Downs, 56, of Monmouth, passed away 10:20 p.m. Nov. 15, 2012, at the Monmouth Nursing Home in Monmouth.

Robert was born Oct. 3, 1956, in Moline, the son of Robert LeRoy and Darlene Alice Mitchell Downs. Robert was raised in the Quad Cities, attended local schools and graduated from Central High School in Davenport, Iowa. Robert was married previously to Cheryl Lynn Seligman.

Robert was a potter all of his working life and began by opening and operating a pottery shop near Davenport, Iowa. Later he did the same for a number of years in Wilton, Iowa. He then went to work at Rowe Pottery in Cambridge, Wisconsin, for five years until he came to Monmouth and opened Maple City Pottery which he operated for 25 years. Robert was a “Master Potter” all of his life. He also loved to dance and enjoyed classic cars.

He is survived by his sons, Michael W. (fiance Megan) Downs, of Macomb, and Robert L. Downs of Monmouth; his father, Robert L. Downs, of Rock Island; and one aunt, Marilyn (Merlin Swanson of Rock Island. He is preceded in death by his mother.
A memorial service is planned for 10 a.m. Saturday at Turnbull Funeral Home in Monmouth. Cremation has been accorded. Fellowship will follow the service at Robert’s residence in Monmouth. For more information, please visit

RWCS Foundation to participate in MN Give to the Max Day – Nov. 15th

Red Wing, MN –

MN Give to the Max Day is this Thursday, November 15th!  This will be our second year of participating and we would LOVE to top last year’s total of $6,135. GiveMN is a is a collaborative venture to transform philanthropy in Minnesota by growing overall giving and moving more of it online. It was designed and launched by the Minnesota Community Foundation in 2009 in partnership with 14 other funders.

This year, the Red Wing Collectors Society Foundation Board Members, have pledged $3,500 dollars to match any funds that we receive. This year our goal is to reach $10,000!  If everyone could just give a little, just $10, $20, or more then we would be on our way. When we get to the $3,500 mark, the board will then add their $3,500 which gives us a total of $7,000; putting us at 2/3 of the way there. Please help us reach our goal; I know we can do it!

You can give any time by clicking on the Give MN logo below; it will take you to our donation page. Here you can read about us, click the donate button and it will easily walk you through the process. 


If you do not feel secure in using a computer, you can call either Larry Peterson at 612-719-6113, Dave Hallstrom 612-718-0331 or Diane Hallstrom 612-247-9876. All three of us will be set up at the Red Wing YMCA on Thursday from 8:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. and we will be happy to get your information so you can send us a check in the mail. 

Please help to make your Red Wing Pottery Museum a huge success. Hope to hear from you soon and thank you very much!


Red Wing Collectors Society Foundation Board

Dave Hallstrom, President
Carmen Selfridge, Vice President
Barb Brown, Secretary
Wayne Miller, Treasurer
Dave Kuffel
Gary Tyc
Larry Peterson
Larry Roschen
Louise Schleich
Steve Brown
Sue Jones Tagliapietria
Diane Hallstrom, Curator

The mission of the Red Wing Pottery Museum is to preserve Red Wing and other American pottery and to expand the public’s awareness of these wares, not only as an art form but also as a historical reflection of American culture.

The Red Wing Pottery Museum first opened its doors in the historic pottery district of Red Wing, MN in July, 2001. The museum is situated in a retail mall setting, which is located in the original Minnesota Stoneware building dating back to the late 1800’s.

After 12 years at this location, the Red Wing Pottery Museum is thrilled to be moving ahead with the purchase of a 13,000 sq. ft. building located close by known as The Pottery Annex Building.

We have received some wonderful donations which we have on display. The Schleich Red Wing Pottery Museum, of Lincoln, NE, will soon be donating over 5,000 items; “bringing these items home, back to Red Wing, MN.” This will help to create a World Class Red Wing Pottery Museum; allowing us to display a huge spectrum of the clay products produced in Red Wing, MN.

2012 RWCS Chapter Commemoratives

Each year the Chapters of the RWCS produce their own commemorative like the national organization. These pieces are also replicas of pieces actually made by the potteries in Red Wing, MN. The pieces are available only to the Chapter members.

The RWCS business office receives these Chapters commemoratives through the annual chapter exchange held at the Annual Business Meeting during the Annual Convention in July. The collection can be viewed at the RWCS business office located in Pottery Place, 3rd Floor, in Red Wing. MN.

To learn more about the RWCS Chapters visit the Chapter Page or the RWCS’s  Commemorative Page.

Top Row Left to Right:

Siouxland Chapter: 2011 Beehive Jug with Advertising
45 regular + 3 special produced
The jug features advertising for the Owsley Mercantile in Watertown, SD. They were wholesalers of Red Wing Stoneware; the actual jug is on display in the Red Wing Pottery Museum. The specials were a miniature of the 7 inch shoulder bowls with Owsley Advertising on the bottom.
Produced by: W.A. Painter Pottery Works

Trails West Chapter: 2012 Hex Bowl
49 regulars, 2 specials produced
The regular commemorative is yellow and the specials were blue and white sponge. The advertising in the bottom “Mix with us Trails West Chapter 2002- 2012” commemorates the 10th Anniversary of the Chapter.
Produced by: W.A. Painter Pottery Works

Iowa Chapter: 2012 10 gallon Birch Leaf Crock with Advertising
170 regulars, 5 specials
The replica features the advertising from J.B Dakin General Merchandise Johnson’s Cider Vinegar A Specialty of Schaller, IA.
Produced by: W.A. Painter Pottery Works

Indiana Red Wingers: 2012 Saffronware Mixing Bowl with Advertising
25 regular, 2 specials produced
The bowl features banding around the middle and the advertising “It Pays to Mix with Indiana Wingers 2012” on the bottom of the bowl.
Produced by: Strawtown Pottery

Wolverine Chapter: 2012 Threshing Jug with Advertising
24 regular + no specials produced
A replica of the Browarski and Abel …Sole Owners of Houghton Club Rye threshing jug from Houghton, MI.  This threshing jug is a “big beauty” because of the front AND back stamped seven line advertising oval and four birch leaves. 
Produced by: W.A. Painter Pottery Works

Bottom Row Left to Right:

Sunshine State RedWingers: Sponge Bird Bath
21 regular + no specials produced
This is spongeware 2-piece bird bath. The base includes the chapter logo.
Produced by: W.A. Painter Pottery

Golden State Red Wing Chapter: 25 gallon Salt Glaze Jug
55 regulars, 5 specials, 5 hostess gifts produced
The commemorative is to recognize the 25th Anniversary of the Chapter (1986 – 2011). In addition to the specials which were blue and white, the Chapter also made hostess pieces without the logo.
Produced by: Robinson California Pottery

Gopher Chapter: 2012 1 gallon Brown top Jug
50 regulars, 1 special
The brown top hand turned jug features a US mapping with markings for Red Wing, New York and Cuba and the “Saving for a Wet Day”. The bank has a fired-shut cork. Coins were placed in the bank through the slit in the top of the jug. To retrieve your money, you had to break the jug. The special was an all-white jug.
Produced by: Jasper Bond

Siouxland Chapter: 2012 Gypsy Trail Plain Pattern Duck Ashtray
24 regular + 3 specials
This commemorative is a replica ashtray from the Gypsy Trail Pattern shape 143 and was made from 1937 to 1938. The commemorative came in wood box. The specials are the same piece but glazed white.
Produced by: Reiver LLC

Wisconsin Chapter: 2011 Salt Glaze Pitcher with paper label advertising
24 regular + no specials produced
The commemorative features a paper label from The Bengal Mustard Company from Middleton, Wis. The specials were all different color combinations.
Produced by: Cambridge Stoneware Co.

Lewis & Clark Chapter: 2011 Brown Top Fancy Jug
24 regular + no specials produced
The commemorative includes advertising from the Atlantic Bar in Butte, MT. The bar claimed to be the longest bar in the world from 1939 to 1969.
Produced by: Artists in the Park 

Southwest Red Winger: Sponge Band Batter Bowl
29 regular + 1 specials produced
The bowl is 1/3 ORIGINAL SIZE and has the chapter logo in the bottom. The special commemorative has an all sponge decoration.
Produced by: Artists in the Park

2012 Convention Review

30 Gallon Butterfly Crock Brings
$12,750 at Red Wing Collectors Society Auction

Red Wing, MN – A 30 gallon salt glaze crock with a gorgeous cobalt butterfly decoration was the top piece this year’s Red Wing Collectors Society (RWCS) Auction on July 12. In addition to being back-stamped “Red Wing Stoneware Company,” it had rare “Made by the Red Wing Stoneware Co., Red Wing, Minnesota” cobalt stenciling and was in excellent condition, helping it draw the highest bid at the RWCS Auction since 2007.

The RWCS celebrated its 35th Anniversary at this year’s Convention, which brought more than 1,500 visitors to the city of Red Wing from July 11-14 to buy, sell and learn more about the lines of Red Wing stoneware, art pottery and dinnerware.

30 gallon Red Wing salt glaze butterfly crock was the top piece at the RWCS Auction drawing a high bid of $12,750.

Other items of interest in this year’s auction, which was operated by Houghton’s Auction Service, included a 10 gallon salt glaze crock with dark double leaves (mint), $1,950; 6 gallon salt glaze double leaf churn (mint), $1,375; 1 gallon crock with “Take Me to the Big Store, Flandreau, SD” advertising (rim chip), $625; and a 2 gallon crock misprinted with multiple numbers (mint), $1500.

For notable art pottery items, a M3013 Decorator Line vase with Crystalline Green glaze sold for $400, a #212 Nokomis vase sold for $540 and a brushware Cherub vase sold for $450. All three items were without damage.

One of the top dinnerware lots consisted of a 10-piece popcorn set Red Wing made for the Hamm’s Brewery, which gave it away to business partners and company friends (mint), $1400. A 20-inch platter in Red Wing’s Chuck Wagon pattern sold for $160 and a factory test plate in the Nassau pattern sold for $300.

The auction, which consisted of nearly 290 items, brought more than $80,000 in total sales.

Highlighting this year’s Convention were several new events and activities scheduled to help celebrate the Society’s 35th anniversary. For example, a free breakfast was held on Thursday, July 12 for RWCS members to recognize the Society’s charter members. Other events that day included a balloon release honoring departed members, Lunch & Learn educational sessions and Shared Interest Groups for collectors to network and share photos of their collections.

On Friday, July 13, a time capsule was buried at the North Star Monument in Red Wing’s historic pottery district and a pig roast lunch complete with anniversary cake made by Red Wing’s popular Hanisch Bakery was served at Red Wing High School. Crockfest – a festival featuring food from local vendors, live music by the Cruisers, kids activities and fun for the whole Red Wing community – was held that evening at Red Wing’s Central Park.

In addition to these new activities, events throughout the week included the annual business meeting, a “Crock Hunt” scavenger hunt around the historic Mississippi River town, and the always anticipated Saturday Show & Sale. There was also a special display room at Red Wing High School, where members created their own unique displays for the education and enjoyment of attendees, combined with some fun and creative competition. Members bought and sold items throughout the week in the parking lot at Pottery Place Mall. About 200 volunteers helped make this year’s Convention a success, and Hannes Kuehn, who worked at the Red Wing Potteries as a mold maker in 1956, officially kicked off the Convention with a keynote presentation on July 12.

To raise support and awareness for its new museum space, the RWCS Foundation held several events on Wednesday, July 11 – the largest of which was a Wine & Cheese fundraiser that featured silent and live auctions and live music by musician Karl Burke. The RWCS Foundation Board in April signed a purchase agreement for the north half of the Pottery Place Annex building, which is about 10,000 sq. ft. larger than the current Red Wing Pottery Museum located across the parking lot in Pottery Place. The RWCS Foundation took in more than $30,000 in donations over the course of the week.

The year’s commemorative, which could be purchased only by RWCS members, was a miniature mid-century modern Red Wing Chromoline art pottery vase. 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 3,236 pieces made, 2900 were orange and green, 300 were blue and green and 36 were gray and pink.

Attendees had a good selection of topics to learn about during the educational sessions held on July 13, including an orientation for first timers, Red Wing salt glaze, Red Wing 101, recent finds from the old pottery dump, Red Wing dinnerware, history of the villages surrounding the Goodhue County clay pits, Minnesota’s New Ulm stoneware and digging old privies in search of antiques and artifacts. In addition, the RWCS Foundation held an info session on all its exciting new developments and what it has planned for the coming years.

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, young Red Wing collectors ages 13 to 20 participated in the Young Collectors program. Activities included a hands-on learning opportunity led by Mary Lou Ista, who worked as a painter at the Red Wing Potteries in 1949, and a tour of Red Wing Oakwood Cemetery, were many people associated with the Red Wing and Minnesota stoneware companies are buried.

Red Wing made this popcorn set for the Hamm’s Brewery in the late 1950s. Not available to the public, Hamm’s gave the sets away to business partners and friends of the brewery as holiday gifts. It sold for $1400.

The dark, ornate cobalt leaves on this Red Wing 10 gallon salt glaze crock pushed the bidding to $1950.

This Albany slip stoneware cat figure was probably made on a potter’s lunch hour. It took a surprising $1075 winning bid for the buyer to take it home.

This pristine 2 gallon bottom-signed straight-sided Ice Water cooler with blue birchleaves sold for $1300.

Designed by artist Charles Murphy, this Red Wing M3013 vase in Crystalline Green glaze sold for $400.

Red Wing salt glaze churns with multiple leaves are hard to find, so this 6 gallon churn was a pretty good buy at $1375.

This 30 gallon Red Wing salt glaze butterfly crock was the top piece at the RWCS Auction on July 12 at Red Wing High School, drawing a high bid of $12,750.

The gavel fell at $1500 when the bidding war ended on this misprinted 2 gallon Red Wing crock w/multiple numbers.

At 9 ½ inches tall, this #212 Red Wing Nokomis vase sold for $540

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 or log on to Find the RWCS on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

2012 Commemorative Unveiled

Chromoline Vase shape 676

2012 Commemorative Version A, B, C from left to right

In 2012, 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 36 pieces to match the 36th Annual RWCS Convention. 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.

The 2012 Commemorative is a #676 Chromoline vase. Red Wing’s “Chromoline Handpainted” series of art pottery appeared in only three company catalogs – fall of 1960 and spring and fall of 1961. Its sweeping lines and shapes with bold, distinctive styling embody the Eames Era of Modern Design, which generally describes the post war era from around 1948 to 1964.

The 15 different shapes in the Chromoline series included covered candy dishes, vases, compotes, candlesticks and ash trays. Although a couple pieces are known to exist with one-of-a-kind experimental glaze colors, Chromoline was made in only two glaze combinations: rust (orange)/green, and blue/yellow.

Version “A” has the orange/green glazing, Version “B” has the blue/yellow colors and Version “C” has a  gray, pink and rust glaze combination, which mimics an experimental M3006 vase that is on display at the Schleich Red Wing Pottery Museum in Lincoln, Neb.
The Commemoratives are all ink-stamped on the bottom and read “Red Wing Collectors Society Convention, July 12-14, 2012”. The Commemoratives were produced by Maple City Pottery in Monmouth, Illinois. The vases were cast in a two-piece mold and hand-painted.

2012 Special Commemoratives

The 2012 Special Commemorative is a #671 Chromoline covered candy dish. Each of the 18 Special Commemoratives were hand-turned and hand-painted; nine have the orange/green glaze combination and nine have the blue/yellow combination. 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.

2012 Kids View version with black light



KidsView once again commissioned 15 pieces. The KidsView vases were cold-painted by hand and glow under a black light. These pieces were auctioned off in a variety of ways to raise money for KidsView activities.



2012 Commemorative Triple Version