Vintage Ransburg Pottery Cookie Jar Stoneware circa 1930s-1950s
What we do see depends mainly on what we look for... in the same field the farmer will notice the crop, the geologists the fossils, botanists the flowers, artists the coloring, sportsmen the cover for the game. Though we may all look at the same things, it does not all follow that we should see them. John Lubbock
A favorite since it was first introduced in the 1920s, Ransburg kitchenware tells the story of one man's creative determination to succeed through some of the worst economic climates of the 20th century.
The son of a Quaker farmer, Harper J. Ransburg's passion for creative arts was much more appealing to him than following in his father's footsteps. In the 1920s, he founded the Harper J Glass Company in Indiana. There he produced detailed, colorful glassware of fine quality. Although successful from the start, the glass company struggled to remain relevant once the Great Depression struck, so Harper changed gears and started making functional kitchen items out of stoneware.
This new design line featured heavy-duty storage jars, containers, and bowls, each hand-decorated with colorfully painted designs. Like his original glass works, these became an immediate success. Durable, functional, and cheerful, this was exactly what home cooks needed to keep their kitchens festive during the dark days of the 1930s. Harper's stoneware line became so successful, he branched out into other kitchenware mediums over the next few decades which included metal, wicker, and eventually plastic.
Making everything from bread boxes to canisters, storage tins to trays, cake carriers, salt and pepper shakers, and much more, it was possible to outfit your entire kitchen in Ransburg designs. Harper grew a brand over the course of 50 years that was synonymous with stylish and functional kitchen design. Working there until his death in the early 1960s, Harper's business was purchased by Hamilton Cosco in 1967, who continued to produce items under the Ransburg name until the 1980s.
This robin's egg blue Ransburg cookie jar dates to the 1930s and features a handpainted red and green floral design. Somewhere along its journey, it lost its lid, so this jar now serves other purposes ideal for crock-style displays and containers.
Not all Ransburg pieces are stamped on the bottom with a maker's mark. This piece is one that has only been marked with their USA stamp.
- Handpainted floral design
- Colors include hazel green, cardinal red, and robin's egg blue
- Unique shoulder-style handles
- Glazed interior
In beautiful vintage condition. The paint on the top tier of flowers has almost all rubbed away over time, which is common in most vintage Ransburg pieces. There are no chips or cracks. There is slight crazing around the floral areas. The interior is clean and bright. Please see photos.
Measures 9" inches (height) x 7.5" inches (width shoulder to shoulder) with a 4" inch opening at top and weighs 6lbs.
With their bright colors and shabby chic aesthetic, Ransburg pottery is such a delight in the kitchen. Find more pieces here.