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Frankoma Indian Maiden Bowl Maker?

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Hi, I am new to Frankoma, I have an Indian Maiden, seated with a bowl, she is marked Frankoma 123 and is sage in color. Can anyone tell me when she was made and her approximate value? Thanks in advance.

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The #123 Indian Bowl Maker was made over a long period of time. The value of your particular piece depends upon when it was made, and that can be determined by the markings on the bottom and/or the type of clay used.

This was one of the early Frankoma pieces and began being produced in 1934. If your piece was made in the original Norman, Oklahoma plant, it will be made of Ada clay (very light in color) and have a black ink backstamp that reads FRANK POTTERIES or FRANK POTTERIES, NORMAN, OKLAHOMA or FRANK POTTERIES, NORMAN OKLA. The Norman mark could also be a blank ink backstamp reading merely FRANKOMA, but the "O" in Frankoma must be perfectly round -- not elongated. Another Norman mark was impressed -- not inked, but impressed into the clay -- reading FRANKOMA, but again with a perfectly round "O." Then there are the "Cat Marks," which are the image of a walking cat with a round pot behind it and FRANKOMA beneath it. There is also what's known as a "broken cat" mark which used only the bottom portion of the Cat Mark impression. If your piece exhibits any of these Norman marks, its value is in the range of $500-600, and you are very lucky indeed.

After Frankoma moved its operations to Sapulpa in 1938, they continued to make the #123 until 1953, at which time it was discontinued. Ada clay was used during this period (1938 to 1953). If your piece is from this period, its value is between $125-175.

In 1973, #123 went back into production. Of course, by this time Frankoma had been using clay from a different source known as Sapulpa clay, which was much redder in color than Ada. If your piece is one of the post-1973 pieces, its value is within a range of $25-45.

Let me know if you have more questions.

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Wow, that's a lot of information, thank you. The Frankoma mark is, I guess, impressed, or slightly raised. The O in Frankoma is perfectly round. Is is possible to post a picture of the mark for you to review?

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Absolutely. You can email it to me directly at patricia at texascooking.com if you like.

But I will tell you that, generally, the raised mold marks indicate later, more recently produced Frankoma, especially if any part of the bottom is glazed.

But, to be certain, you can email me a photo.

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Thank you for sending the photo -- and it's a very good photo. Nice job.

fr_123post54mark.jpg

This is a really good example of one of the new Frankoma backstamps. The bottom is partially glazed, but the "foot" is not. The foot is the part of the piece that is actually touching the kiln floor when the piece is being fired. While not deep brick red like early Sapulpa clay, it is not light beige or almost white as Ada clay is. (It's interesting that when they first started using Sapulpa clay, it was dark red but over the years, as they mined farther back in the vein, it got lighter. And I think Frankoma started using different chemicals in the clay which also made it lighter.) The Frankoma mark is indeed raised -- not impressed into the clay.

One of these days, I'll post some really good example photos of the various backstamp and clays. Or I'll put them on http://www.frankomaland.com.

So, my dear, your #123 was made after 1973. It isn't worth a small fortune, but the Indian Bowl Maker is still one of the lovliest of Frankoma pieces.

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Don't be hard on yourself for overpaying. All collectors overpay now and then, whether it's because of a lack of knowledge or just something you really, really want. It's a learning experience.

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