Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Collection Collective!

I am joining in the Collection Collective, begun by my friend and blogmate bugheart.
This is all about collections....
I only have one, I think....
A collection that is specific, that is.
I have LOTS of stuff collected all over the house, actually, but only one thing I search for to 'collect.' My introduction to these dishes is a really good story, too.

When I was a kid, my family spent a lot of time camping out at an abandoned gold mine. We used to walk through the woods down the old, overgrown roads and find the remnants of miner's cabins. These small, log structures were usually half fallen in---the roof caved in, the windows missing, willow saplings growing up all around it. In one cabin, we found old clothes, tools, papers....
My mom was digging through the detritus of the caved in roof---where generations of squirrels had built a sizable stash of spruce cones---and she came upon a perfectly whole, thick white ceramic plate with a green line around the rim. I remember it so well---she was kneeling in the spruce cones and there was soft, grey, overcast light falling through the hole in the roof of the cabin as she held the plate in her small hands. We kids gathered around---this was like buried treasure! This mining town had shut down in the 40's and many people left many belongings behind, thinking they would return when the mining was never was.
We used that plate constantly at home, along with a few others that we found in the old cabins. When I went off to college, I took the plate with me. In my thrift store shopping sprees, I'd always peruse the aisle of dishes, always on the lookout for more Shenango china. (I found some that were similar in design and bought them even they weren't Shenango.)

Here is the official Shenango stamp---"Shenango China, Newcastle, PA."
I've done a bit of research on these dishes....not a whole lot, but here's the basic story.
Shenango has been making A LOT of dishes for A LOT of years! My green rim design is actually a very basic one that they mass produced for years and sold as restaraunt ware from the 20's to the 50's. They have many other designs specifically created for railroads, steamships, clubs, etc.
Go to ebay and enter "Shenango" and you'll get a lot of hits and see many patterns...

This is a sugar bowl that bugheart sent me.
She is the only friend who has noticed my dishes!
She is my only friend to give me Shenango!
Bugheart is wonderful. Posted by Picasa

1 comment:

bugheart said...

hooray for
collection collective.
i love your shenango.
i guess i just
love collections
and what other people
i didn't remember
the whole story
behind it
but it makes it
even better!
package in the mail
with your check and
perhaps some more items
for your collection!