Garden Club line



I have a green mug, pitcher or something.

Can you give me more detail on it?




Hi Bill

this is part of the Garden Club line, from 1957.  it has a pitcher shape, but it’s really more of a vase….  Value is around 45.00 or so.  thanks, steve n rose

Minnesota Stoneware Company 8 gallon birch leaf crock


I have had this crock for many years, and I don’t know for sure if this is a redwing, but I believe I found the stamp today, at first I didn’t think there was any, and thought it was a fake.  Now I’m not sure, is it a redwing, and if it is, how old is it, and how much approximately is it worth.    My name is Theresa


Theresa, you have a vintage Minnesota Stoneware Company 8 gallon birch leaf crock. It was produced between 1895 & 1906. In prefect condition, the value is between $125 & $150. Al Kohlman

Red Wing 5 gallon Beehive with 6 inch wing


Hello! I was wondering if you could give a close value for this jug. It has no major flaws. Also, around what year did this come from? Thank you! Phil


Phil, the value of your Red Wing 5 gallon Beehive with 6 inch wing is between $300 & $350.  Your beehive was produced between 1909 & 1915.  Al Kohlman

20 gallon Red Wing crock, with lid


I think the cover on the 20-gallon one has a different glaze and I’m curious about that. I’m happy to answer questions from the person you send this too.

Could someone help me price them or, even better, tell me who might be interested in them and where I might sell them? 

Thank you so much!!



Susan, if your 20 gallon Red Wing crock is in perfect condition, the value on just the crock is $200.  If the Red Wing button lid is perfect as well, $275 to $300 for just the lid.  The two together make a beautifully set.  Al Kohlman

1 gallon Red Wing crock



Gee, I am sorry not to have taken a picture of my gallon crock, however, it is very plain and I will describe as much as I can.  It is a gallon crock with no lid.  Just one red wing.  The red wing is not smooth…it is rough, however, not swirly, just like it was applied half way through firing.  Does this make sense?  I hope so. No mark on the bottom or anywhere else.  I do think it is old from my husband’s side of the family.  Can you give me any info?  Thank you for considering my question.  Peggy


Peggy, your 1 gallon Red Wing crock sounds like a vintage piece of Red Wing and not a reproduction.  On some of the pieces the Red Wing was applied (by stamp) while the clay was quite wet.  When this happens, the stamp will leave a small impression which one could feel by sliding their fingers across the red wing.  What I don’t know is the size of the red wing.  If the red wing is 4 1/2 inches long (1909 to 1930)and in perfect condition the value can run from $350 to $450.  If the red wing is 2 7/8 inch long (1930 to 1947), then the value  (in perfect condition is around $200.  Hope this is what you are looking for.  Al Kohlman

August 2012

Dinnerware of the 1930s


The information presented here has been taken from the RWCS Newsletter Introduction to Dinnerware article series. Below is a brief summary of the early patterns by Red Wing.

Each pattern has been assigned an Availability rating and a Collector Interest rating as described below. Availability represents an average for the pattern in question, however the scarcity of certain pieces within the pattern may differ. Collector Interest refers to the pattern in general, but there may be specific pieces in any pattern that are of greater interest to specialty collectors (teapots, pitchers, salt & peppers, etc). Please keep in mind these ratings are the authors’ observations; your experience may vary.

AVAILABILITY                                                  COLLECTOR INTEREST
 1 Rare                                                              1 Highly sought, demand exceeds supply
2 Very scarce                                                   2 Primarily of interest to specialty collectors
3 Hard to find                                                  3 Above average
4 Average                                                         4 Average
5 Readily available                                         5 Below average

The Full Article includes where the information was found, availability and collector interest for the patterns.

Availability: 2      Interest: 1           Years: Unknown (1930s)
Red Wing dinnerware production began in the mid-1930s. The first pattern produced is most likely the one known to collectors as Wreath. No documentation of this rare pattern has been found, so we cannot confirm production dates or even its official name. But several pieces marked with a blue Red Wing Potteries ink stamp have been found. This mark is also found on early Blue, Black, and Blue-Green Gypsy Trail coffee servers, which leads us to believe Wreath predates Gypsy Trail. This theory is further supported by several Wreath pieces glazed in bright Gypsy Trail colors. Standard Wreath colors are Ivory, Light Yellow and Light Green.

Ivanhoe – 1937
Availability: 2      Interest: 1           Years: 1937
The February 1937 issue of “Crockery and Glass Journal” included an announcement for the new Ivanhoe dinnerware pattern sold by RumRill Pottery Co. Ivanhoe was made by Red Wing but sold exclusively by the RumRill Pottery Co, owned by George RumRill. This ad is the only known documentation for Ivanhoe. The announcement stated Ivanhoe has “a matt glaze finish in ivory, suntan, Alpine blue and ocean green”. Ivanhoe pieces feature a raised laurel pattern around the rims, are not marked, and are often not recognized as being made by Red Wing. Not long after the introduction of Ivanhoe a dispute arose between George RumRill and Red Wing Potteries, and their partnership soon ended. The remaining unglazed Ivanhoe pieces were glazed with Gypsy Trail colors.

Gypsy Trail  Line – 1935

A brochure dated June 1935 introduced the Gypsy Trail line. This brochure included 19 items, most of which would later be part of the Reed pattern but at this point were simply called “Gypsy Trail”. An updated brochure in September 1935 added 15 more pieces. The colors available at this time were White, Yellow, Turquoise, Blue and Orange. These colors continued to be available for the duration of Gypsy Trail production. Two additional colors, Black and Blue Green, were available for only the 565 Coffee Server. The Reed Mixing Bowl was also available in Mulberry. These three colors only appeared in this 1935 brochure.

An undated brochure (probably from 1936) introduced many more items, including the Chevron pattern. All items that were not Chevron continued to be called Gypsy Trail, with some items identified as Plain or Reed. This brochure was printed in two versions, identical except for the company name. One version had the Red Wing Potteries name, the other stated “Rum Rill Pottery Company, Little Rock, Arkansas”. George RumRill partnered with Red Wing and introduced new designs and glazes. Today he is better known for his work with art pottery but also had an influence on the development of Red Wing dinnerware. In exchange for his expertise, RumRill was allowed to market Gypsy Trail in parts of the country outside Red Wing’s usual distribution area.

The January 1939 issue of “Crockery and Glass Journal” had a full page ad for Fondoso, “the new member of the Gypsy Trail Hostess Ware family.” An undated brochure, likely from the same time period, divided all Gypsy Trail pieces into four distinct patterns: Reed, Plain, Chevron and Fondoso. This brochure was used by existing Red Wing reference books to define the Gypsy Trail line. However, this brochure was merely a snapshot of the Gypsy Trail line at that particular time, thus many collectors see only part of the Gypsy Trail story. The ad and the brochure both made clear the Fondoso design was copyrighted, and the copyright mark can be found on many Fondoso pieces themselves. This may have been because of concerns about the broken partnership with George RumRill. Fondoso was designed by Belle Kogan, a well-known designer who developed many art pottery designs for Red Wing but also worked on several dinnerware designs over the years.

Markings: Most early Gypsy Trail pieces were not marked. Quite likely this was because of the co-marketing agreement with RumRill, who would not want his wares marked with the Red Wing name. Most marked Reed, Plain and Chevron pieces likely were formed by molds created after the end of the partnership with RumRill. Early marked pieces had simply “RED WING” on the bottom. Later pieces were marked “RED WING USA” along with the shape number from the Gypsy Trail catalog. The three digit number is similar to the shape numbers used on art pottery, causing some collectors to believe these dinnerware items were from the art pottery lines. There were 3 art pottery items which had Fondoso markings, but were not dinnerware. These 3 items were candleholders and 2 bowls.

Colors: Although specific colors were associated with specific patterns in the price lists and brochures, any Gypsy Trail item may be found in any of the colors. There were 30 colors listed but some may be different names for the same color at different times in the life of the line.

Resources: Collectors will discover that there is no single resource or reference book that will include all of the individual Gypsy Trail items shown in the Red Wing Brochures and Price Guides. There were at least 189 individual items in the line and that count does not include the different sizes listed for many of the items such as plates, pitchers, and bowls. A Gypsy Trail collection is never completed, and that is what makes it such fun to collect.

Availability: 4      Interest: 3           Years: 1935 – post WWII
Reed items had vertical ribs on the exterior of most pieces. For plates, the ribbed effect was found around the outer rim. For other items, the ribbed effect was on the outside of the piece. Reed was available in the five standard Gypsy Trail “bright” colors: White, Blue, Yellow, Turquoise and Orange. Some mixing bowls were also available in Russet (brown) and Mulberry. The pastel colors introduced with Fondoso may rarely be found on Reed pieces.

Availability: 4      Interest: 3           Years: 1935 – post WWII
The name says it all. Some Plain items had swirls or a trim line, but most were smooth. There was not a consistent design that could be used to identify Plain pieces. An unusual aspect of Plain was the lack of plates; there were platters, divided grill platters, and a sandwich tray but no plates. Plain was available in the five standard Gypsy Trail “bright” colors: White, Blue, Yellow, Turquoise and Orange. The pastel colors introduced with Fondoso may rarely be found on Plain pieces.



Availability: 3      Interest: 3           Years: 1936 – approx 1940
Zigzag lines (chevrons) around the rims identified pieces from the Chevron pattern. Some non-collectors describe it as rickrack. Chevron was available in the five standard Gypsy Trail “bright” colors: White, Blue, Yellow, Turquoise and Orange. The pastel colors introduced with Fondoso may rarely be found on Chevron pieces. Chevron was discontinued shortly after the introduction of Fondoso and did not appear in the 1940 price lists.


Availability: 4      Interest: 3           Years: 1939 – approx 1942
Fondoso pieces had a raised art deco leaf design. The design was found on the exterior of hollowware and around the rim for flatware. Fondoso was available in several newly introduced colors (Powder Blue , Pastel Blue, Pastel Green, Pastel Pink, Pastel Yellow) as well as four of the Gypsy Trail bright colors (Blue, Yellow, Turquoise and Orange). Fondoso mixing bowls were available in Russet (brown). 


Gypsy Trail Hostess Ware
Availability and Collector Interest vary because of the wide range of items produced.

By 1940 Gypsy Trail Hostess Ware became the name used on company catalogues to represent the entire line, which continued to expand in the ensuing years. New items that did not belong to any of the four patterns were added, intended to be accessories that could be used with any of the patterns or on their own. Metals for consumer use were scarce during World War II; to fill the void Red Wing developed a wide and colorful variety of pottery substitutes shaped in art deco, fruit and figural designs. The items included casseroles, bowls, cookie jars, marmalade jars, pitchers, teapots, canister sets, dripolators, butter dishes, juicer, bakers, ice tub and even a watering can. During this period items that did not sell well were promptly dropped and replaced by something new. The well-known Chef, Katrina and Friar cookie jars were introduced as Gypsy Trail Hostess items in 1941. During the war years the four distinct dinnerware patterns faded and most pieces from those patterns were dropped. All remaining items were marketed under the Gypsy Trail Hostess Ware name. The last known Gypsy Trail catalog was dated January 1944, and with the end of World War II came the end of production for most Gypsy Trail pieces.

5 gallon Hydro-clean advertising jug


Hi,  I just purchase this Hydro-clean Toilet Cleaner 5 gallon jug and would like to know if it is a Redwing jug and to get some idea on value (photo attached).  The jug is in very good condition, no cracks, and only minor bottom rim chips.  Thank you ahead of time for your advice.   Mike


Mike, your 5 gal  Hydro-clean  advertising jug is Red Wing.  In perfect condition the value is $400 to $500.  Al Kohlman

4 gallon Red Wing water cooler lid


I have a 4 gallon water cooler.  Except for two very small and faint x shaped lines on the inside wall, there are no chips or cracks.  These two x’s are so faint, I can’t feel them with my finger nails, but I wanted to mention them.  They do NOT appear on the outside.  A picture of them is attached.

Can you tell me the age and approximate value?

Also, I would really like to make this water cooler complete, so how can I obtain an original spigot and lid for this and about how much would they cost. 

Thank you.



Tony, your Red Wing water cooler was produced between 1930 & 1947.  It would have a value in the neighborhood of $300 or so.  A perfect 4 gallon Red Wing water cooler lid will sell between $325 & $350.  An original “Central” spigot sells for $50.

You can advertise that you are looking for these items in the Red Wing Newsletter and you should be able to obtain both by doing this.  Al Kohlman

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.