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Americana by Homer Laughlin
LaurelHollowPark.net, an informative website created and
maintained by Mark Gonzalez. Copyright © 2009-.
On May 25, 1939, J.M. Wells informed Rhead that Montgomery Wards wanted a special line with "printed American patterns." Two weeks later, Rhead went to Chicago, Illinois to meet with Montgomery Wards on the new line and other HLC wares. Later that day, he noted in his journals going to the Chicago Art Museum, Chicago Public Library, and bookstores to hunt for Currier and Ives subjects.

On June 11th and 12th, Rhead worked on Currier and Ives treatments to be used on the same shapes as Willow. After meeting with Ed Fry (buyer for Wards) the shapes and patterns were decided upon and work began on the new line on June 19, 1939. Wards offered the line, called Americana, from 1940 until 1956. Each piece has a special Currier and Ives scene with the title is printed in the backstamp in red. The official treatment number for the line was W-2553.

There were some special shapes made for American at the request of Wards, all of which were released into production on March 29, 1940. The Americana line consisted of

  • Flatware from Kwaker
  • Square plate - originally Century, but later Nautilus
  • Sugar, creamer, sauceboat, cup, saucer - from Willow
  • Sauceboat stand - modified Nautilus pickle
  • Teapot, cream soup cup and liner, demitasse cup and saucer - designed forAmericana
  • Casserole - Brittany with the second style, solid finial lid

An advertisement from the 1950s describes the line as: ...the first ware of its kind to equal the distinguished quality and soft rose-pink color of fine imported ware. Americana has scenes taken from the finest Currier and Ives prints - printed from copper engravings under the glaze so they can never come off.

A set consisting of 53 pieces could be purchased for $19.99. Matching frosted tumblers were sold as go alongs.


"Fox Hunting" bowl

Americana creamer

Americana test plates from the collection of the Fiesta® Tableware Company.

Americana examples along with their corresponding backstamps

9" platter

9" platter marking

8 ½" nappy

8 ½" nappy marking

9 ½" plate

9 ½" plate marking

10" plate

10" plate marking

Covered sugar and creamer

Sugar and creamer markings

Teacup and saucer

Saucer marking

Demitasse cup and saucer

Demitasse saucer marking

7 ¼" plate

7 ¼" plate marking

Oval baker

Oval baker marking

11 ¾" platter

11 ¾" platter marking

13 ⅝" platter

13 ⅝" platter marking

Teapot

Teapot marking

Casserole, top view

Casserole, inside view

Marking for the casserole


Test colors on 10" plates, dated 1939.

Americana 10" test plate in brown.

Americana brown marking from 1939.

Americana 10" test plate in blue.

Americana blue marking from 1939.

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