DURING the s and '50s heyday of auto travel along Oklahoma Route 66, the Frankoma pottery factory near Sapulpa was a popular stopping-off place for pass-through travelers wanting some rest and diversion. Since its doors opened in , visitors have been welcome to tour the plant and watch pottery being made. Many a piece of the characteristically eccentric, inexpensive pottery went home with visitors as souvenirs from the company's well-stocked gift shop. Some of the pottery later became highly-prized collectibles. In fact, three books have been published about the collectibility of Frankoma ware.
Unique characteristics of this antique stoneware included:. This piece has a quarter-sized chip and a few spider cracks. He founded a branch of the family business in Binghamton, New York, in and ran it until It had no cracks, repairs, or chips. A 4-gallon stoneware crock, this piece is from Pittston, Pennsylvania, and marked with the name Evan Jones. The artwork depicts a bird on a stump in blue. However, it was still structurally sound. It also had several small chips on the inside of the rim.
Not only is Frankoma Pottery highly sought after by collectors, the company itself is of great historical significance to the state of Oklahoma. The company has a fascinating history, from its beginning during the Great Depression to modern day production. Discover the history and unique characteristics of this highly collectible pottery line.
In John Frank, teaching art and pottery at the University of Oklahoma, was inspired to use clay deposits from Oklahoma. With only a small kiln, a butter churn for mixing clay and jars for glazes, a pottery studio was started in Norman, Oklahoma. It was in that the company moved to Sapulpa, Oklahoma, west of Tulsa and about miles from the city of Norman.