Heart of America Glass Collectors

Kansas City


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Meeting Highlights & Program


October 2011


Dan provided a wonderful program on Franciscan Pottery from his vast collection, focusing on (but not limited to) the hand-painted wares.  Gladding, McBean & Co. (the original company name) started in California in 1875 making terra cotta tiles for water transportation.  By 1900 they had expanded to clay bricks and exterior tile works.  In the 1930s they expanded into dinnerware and a series of very successful and long-lived patterns.  The firm acquired Catalina Pottery in the late 1930s and continued to use the Catalina mark on spectacular art ware pieces.  Franciscan Pottery started to see its fortunes decline in the 1960s and reorganized as Interpace.  Wedgewood bought the pottery in 1979.  The Franciscan plant closed in 1984 and was bulldozed in 1985.  Wedgewood continues to make a few Franciscan dinnerware patterns in England.
Franciscan was known for its masterful glazes and a highlight of Danís program were some of his amazing Oxblood art ware vases.  Club members were abuzz about the exquisite glazes and simple, artistic shapes reminiscent of ancient Chinese porcelain.  The Oxblood art wares were produced between 1938 and 1941; they employ a variety of marks (USA, or Catalina, or Franciscan).  Danís sampling of Oxblood pieces left the club wanting more!
Dan also shared two pieces from the Polynesia line of the early 1930s, a vase and a window box.  He pointed out that the glazing basically incorporates the same colors as would be used years later on Desert Rose.
Dan brought a few pieces from most of the hand-painted embossed dinnerware lines with which most collectors are familiar, including Apple, Desert Rose, Ivy, and Wildflower (all designed by Mary Grant); as well as Forget-Me-Not, October, and Poppy; and also three Desert Rose variations:  Meadow Rose, Cafť Royal, and Twilight Rose.  He also shared some interesting and unusual treatments, such as a solid-glazed Desert Rose cup and saucer in Redwood and Black, a Desert Rose bread and butter plate with embossed design but no hand painting other than the exterior ring around the rim, a Wildflower bread and butter in a matte glaze variation, and a Desert Rose oblong butter lid with lavender flowers  and knob (part of a one-off set custom-made for a client).
Imperial Glass made glassware to accompany several of the patterns and Dan was able to provide an example of each:  Apple, Desert Rose, Poppy, and Wildflower on Imperialís Continental line, and Desert Rose on the Twist line.
Danís grandmother started Desert Rose in the 1940s and he inherited his love for all things Franciscan from her!
Additional information about Franciscan Pottery is available at the Franciscan Newsletter and Collectors Web Site.




Show & Tell

Club members brought the following treasures for Show and Tell!  Here are some highlights from this meeting.  Descriptions of each treasure is found below the pictures using the corresponding number.



Morgantown Ritz Blue #2124 Regina decanter with octagon stopper and platinum encrusted #791 decorative band, circa 1931.
Cambridge #3011/9 Statuesque 3-ounce cocktails in Pistachio and LaRosa Pink.
Anchor Hocking Block Optic 1-ounce shot glass in pink and tumbler for the night set in green.


On the left is a Imperial Glass clear #282 punch cup.

On the right is a Cambridge crystal Tally-Ho pitcher with square icer insert, chrome top, and silver decoration.


On the left is a Viking red owl.

On the right is Cambridge Light Emerald #274 10" bud vase with the #743 etching (which is the inspiration for the Heart of America Glass Collectors' logo).

Red cocktail shaker with a chrome top and a Georgian pattern from an unknown manufacturer.
Tiffin Kilarney Green #17437 cordial decanter and #17394 cordials, circa 1950.
Fostoria red Holly Giftware console set, made between 1981 and 1982.