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Van Briggle actual marking of years was basically nonexistent after 1920. Fire, flood, and several different owners all contributed to the myriad of bottom markings, leaving no consistency to identification of Van Briggle pottery. Thousands of dollars, as well as embarrassment, are the result of correct or incorrect recognition. I have seen unknowledgeable people buy "new", assuming it is old, and pay a hefty price for it. Sellers also make the same mistakes-

Hopefully, with a lot of "hands on" experience and some advice from this page, we can make decisions a little easier for buyers and sellers of Van Briggle. Nothing will make up for actually looking at and handling VB, we can talk all day, but seeing first hand is the best way to learn. Clay types, knowledge of glazes and markings are also needed. There are good reference books. A collectors guide to VB pottery, the Collectors Encyclopedia of VB pottery, and The Story Behind the Clay. I will use terms such as "7-12", "teens", "20"s, "30's", "40's-60's", periods of time in Van Briggle production. They are not exact dates, just general time frames. Some will overlap onto others.

So having said all that, here we go! With some text and some pictures, I will try and explain "dating" Van Briggle pottery.

 Picture To Come
1900-1901 Marked with the VB logo, two conjoint AA's, for Artus and Anne. Some are marked with batch numbers. Date
1902-1903 Marked with the VB logo, clay type III, shape number, and date. Some experimental glaze markings, in Roman numerals, hand applied in ink.
1904 Marked with the VB logo, clay type V, and shape numbers, and date. This was the year of Artus Van Briggles's death. The V in Van Briggle was altered after his death.
1905 Marked with the VB logo, several clay types, V, X, VV, date. Shape numbers are still used.
1906 Marked with the VB logo, date. No more clay types. Shape numbers, but Colo. Springs has now been added.
  1907-1912 Marked with VB logo, shape number, Colo. Springs. Later in 1907, the date was dropped, and finisher numbers were added on each side of the logo. This was a pretty consistent marking throughout this period. Not to be confused with numbers used in the 40's-60's timeframe which are batch numbers, no shape number was used then either.
  1912-18 Ned Curtis owned the pottery during this time, markings were changed. Most have just the VB logo, and the date. A few will have a design numbers.
  1919,20,21 Marked with the VB logo, Van Briggle, and usually having "19", "20", or "21"
21 Marked with the VB logo, Van Briggle, and date
  1922-1926 Marked with VB logo, Van Briggle, and U.S.A.

 Picture To Come
1920's Marked with VB logo, Van Briggle Colo. Spgs. Mostly block lettering

 Picture To Come
1930's Marked with VB logo, Van Briggle Colo Spgs. Mostly script lettering

40's-60's Marked with VB logo, Van Briggle Colo Spgs. Combinations of block and script lettering, Finisher initials and batch numbers appear. Handthrown pieces will most often have throwers initial or initials, and original. Ink marks are for individuals who glaze the pieces. Also in this timeframe there are other markings.

The bottom treatment on the piece pictured at top left is atypical of most pieces - which had a flat bottoms (picture at bottom left) rather than carved out or concave bottoms.


Note the similarities of the two, however: Clay (bottom pic's varnish is mostly flaked off, giving it a light appearance), ink marks, and incision style are both very typical of the era.

1952?-1968 High gloss pieces were marked Anna Van Briggle to designate a different clay body than was used for the standard matte glazes.

1955-1968 Some pieces marked with VB logo AND "Anna Van Briggle." This marking combination is not typical but can be found. It is not known if it was intentional or an error on the incision artist's part.
1956 Some pieces in gold Ore Glaze marked with a "G" in a circle, or gold ore glaze , Van Briggle, Colo. Spgs.
1970-1999 Van Briggle logo, Van Briggle Colo Spgs, in various print or script, also carries finisher initials, thrower initials

1984-1985 Van Briggle logo, Van Briggle, Colo Spgs, and "84" or "85"