Rare Vintage 1940s Floral Salad Plates - Scio Ohio Pottery Co - Hazel Pattern - Set of 5
Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success. Henry Ford
How much money did it take to buy an abandoned pottery plant in 1932? $8,000! How many people did it take to keep the pottery financially up and running? An entire town! And so begins the story of Lew Reese and the Scio-Ohio pottery plant located in the Appalachian town of Scio, OH.
From the very beginning, Lew had economy on his mind when he first bought the abandoned plant at a sheriff’s sale for $8,000. Thrifty and dedicated from day one, Lew was totally invested in making this dream a success. While repairs were being done at the plant, he lived there in order to make sure the pottery was up and running as quickly and professionally as possible.
Money was always tight, so in addition to managing the operation, Lew became the salesman too, introducing Scio dishes to buyers in major market cities. But selling dishware during the Great Depression was always a tricky business. Even with Lew focusing on affordable pieces and prices, his finances were always precariously balanced. Like all companies trying to survive during tough economic conditions, Lew was constantly thinking up creative ways to keep his pottery afloat day to day. But with all of his clever thinking, Lew would have never forecasted that aid might come from the very people who populated the town of Scio, Ohio.
When word got out that Lew was struggling to meet operating costs, the townspeople of Scio stepped up, in $100 increments, and helped Lew pay all his bills so that the pottery would have a chance to succeed. In what must have felt like a real George Bailey moment, the graciousness and generosity of local residents helped the pottery grow and then thrive for the next 50 years.
The pottery employees were equally loyal and supportive too. When a fire burned down the plant in 1947, employees donated their paychecks and residents lent physical support to help rebuild the entire plant. One year later, the pottery was back in operation and these salad plates were made.They feature the Hazel pattern blooming with colorful floral bouquets on the Ransom dishware shape which has embossed detailing around the rim and is edged in gold.
If there ever was a real-life George Bailey or a real-life Bedford Falls, it would be Lew Reese and it would be the town of Scio, OH. It’s no wonder there are no markings on the back of these plates. This platter was made by everyone in the town of Scio in one way or another. Cheers to stories of people helping people. And in this case, potteries too:)
- Contains the following colors - blush, raspberry, mustard, mint, periwinkle, purple, gold
- Features a decorative rim of embossed designs and edged in gold
- Made in 1948
- Ranson shape, Hazel pattern
- Set of 5 matching plates
In lovely vintage condition. No chips, cracks or crazing. The dishes on the back all feature small indentations, mostly caused either during the firing stage where they rested on stands in the kiln or caused by plate hangers once they were displayed at home. Two of the plates are ever so slightly faded, making the floral bouquets just a touch less vibrant in color. Most of the gold has rubbed off around the edges of each plate. Please see photos.
Measures 7.25" inches in diameter
These plates feature the same embossed edge as this 1930's soup bowl.