What Are Hummel Markings?
Hummel markings are the marks found on the underside of a Hummel figurine. These marks are used to date and authenticate a Hummel figurine. The marking usually displays the logo of the Goebel porcelain company, which produced the Hummel figurines from 1935 to 2008.
Only the marked Hummel figurines are authentic. The look of Hummel marks has varied since 1935, and collectors sometimes find new authentic marks. At first, the Hummel figurines were marked with a logo depicting a crown and the initials of William Goebel, who founded the Goebel company. After the death of Sister Maria Innocentia Hummel, the designer of the figurines, the Goebel porcelaine company changed the Hummel markings to a bee because Hummel means "bumble bee" in German. The Goebel company ceased to produce Hummel figurines in 2008. As of 2015, the figurines are produced by Hummel Manufaktur.
Sister Maria Innocentia Hummel was a German Franciscan Sister and artist. She started painting pictures of children in 1930, and the Sisters of her convent sent some of her work to a publisher to print postcards. Franz Goebel, the owner of the Goebel porcelain company, saw some of Hummel's postcards and decided to propose Hummel to design porcelain figurines for his company. Hummel agreed, and the first Hummel figurine was produced in 1935.