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Vintage Crocks Used to Make Wine





Vintage Crocks Used to Make Wine

Q: What can you tell me about the two pottery crocks in the attached photo? Each is marked with the number "4", so I know they have a 4 gallon capacity. There are no manufacturer's marks. My grandfather and my father used them to make homemade wine. That would date back to at least the early 1940s. Both lived most of their lives in Elgin, Illinois, which is about 30 miles northwest of Chicago.

I hope you can provide information regarding where they were made, the age and value of each one.

A: Manufacturers did not always mark their wares. If they did, the mark was usually on the bottom or on the side. For example, Red Wing Pottery marked their pieces with the image of a wing. There were several potteries in Illinois and any one of them could have made your crocks.

Your stoneware crocks were made in the early 1900s and each would probably be worth $75 to $150.

Q: This mark is on the bottom of a pitcher that was given to me years ago by a friend who collected antiques. It stands about 9 inches tall and is in perfect condition. It is decorated with raised multicolored fruit and the handle looks like bamboo.

What can you tell me about the maker, when it was made and if it has any value?

A: You have a water pitcher that was made in the mid 20th century.

Thomas Lawrence Ltd. made "Falcon Ware." They made earthenware from 1892 to 1964 in Staffordshire, England. The number "478" is the design number.

Similar water pitchers can be found selling from $50 to $125.

Q: I have a china cupboard that my grandparents bought when they built their first home in around 1930. The cupboard has shelves at the top and drawers below. Inside one of the drawers is a brass plaque with the words "Berkey and Gay Furniture Company." There is a number that is stamped in the wood.

I would never part with it, but would like to know more about its history.

A: Berkey and Gay Furniture Co. was located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, from the mid-1800s to around 1948. They were well known for producing high quality furniture. Most of their furniture was inspired by earlier periods of design that included Elizabethan, William and Mary, and American Empire. The number is a design number.

Your china cupboard was made around 1929. Insurance value would be worth around $1,000 to $1,500.

Address your questions to Anne McCollam, P. O. Box 247, Notre Dame, I.N. 46556. Items of a general interest will be answered in this column. Due to the volume of inquiries, she cannot answer individual letters. To find out more about Anne McCollam and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at



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Anne McCollam
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