How Do You Check for an Antique Pottery Maker's Mark?

Check for an antique pottery maker's mark by looking on the bottom of the pottery's base. There, you may find either the maker's name, initials or a symbol that identifies the pottery's maker. Occasionally, the mark appears near the base instead of at the bottom.

Pottery makers who spell out their names make identifying them relatively easy. Companies such as Redlands, Robins and Hampshire are examples of pottery makers who used their entire names. Newcomb pottery goes a step further and includes the era during which the pottery was made. If only initials are present, you must research which company the initials identify. For example, the initials "NC" stand for Newcomb College, "SEG" stands for Saturday Evening Girls, and "AR" is Adelaide Robineau.

Symbols typically are the hardest markings to identify. While some are accompanied by the maker's initials or name, symbols alone must be researched. Identify what the symbol is. From there, you can research a markings database, such as the one at The symbols are categorized based on their shapes. For example, all crown symbols are placed together, and you must then search through all the crown symbols to find the one that matches your pottery. The accompanying entry tells you the pottery maker, as well as details about age and materials used.