Shenango pottery, or china, was made between 1902 and 1961 in New Castle, Pennsylvania. As the Shenango company experienced financial problems throughout its history, the china was produced by various companies. In addition, Shenango used several names for the china, making identifying the pottery marks and their age somewhat difficult. There are a few ways to identify the age of the Shenango pottery marks.
Turn the piece over to view the maker’s mark. Items with the words “Shenango China New Castle PA” were likely produced between 1902 and 1948. Although many items during this time were not dated, some pieces will have a date code with the month and year of manufacture. For instance, the code 8-45 means the item was manufactured in August 1945.
Identify items with the words “Castleton China,” which signify china items produced between 1940 and 1968 by Shenango. The Shenango company also made china for the Theodore Haviland Co., marked “Theodore Haviland New York made in America,” from 1936 to 1958.
Look for the words “Shenango China” and a date, which usually indicate Shenango china produced after 1950. Pieces produced after 1950 had a date code with a letter and a number. Websites such as the one for the Restaurant Ware Collectors Network offer charts with dates that correspond to the codes.
Find Shenango china pieces with the words “Anchor Hocking” on the piece, which were made after 1979, when the company was bought out by Anchor Hocking.
Look up other Shenango china marks in a reference book to correctly identify specifics, as many different marks were used on the china over time, including “Epicure,” “Interpace,” “Peter Terris” and “IncaWare.” An example of a reference book is “Pictorial Guide to Pottery and Porcelain Marks” by Chad Lage, which can be purchased at most bookstores, online or borrowed from a local library.
Meredith Jameson writes early childhood parenting and family health articles for various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from San Francisco State University.