Sunday, May 15, 2011

Vernon Kilns

So today begins a new adventure with a new pottery company, Vernon Kilns.   It started with the feeling of giddy glee that comes when I spy a treasure amongst the mass produced, plastic and otherwise not-what-I'm-looking-for stuff at Goodwill.  There among the dishware - a stack of 17 oversized plates with that cannot be mistaken glaze of the 1940s/1950s.  The backstamp read, "HAND PAINTED UNDERGLAZE VERNON KILNS CALIF. MADE IN THE U.S.A. ARCADIA."  I took a picture with my cell phone, came home to research, then went back and paid $1.99 for each.  I certainly don't need them....but felt obligated to rescue these relics of my favorite time period.

 Don't know where I'm going to put you, but look at your pretty edge so detailed and sweet.

The research begins.  Here's what I found out.

The pattern is "Arcadia" and was made between 1942-1947.  It has a cream background with a yellow and brown leaf ring going around the rim.

Vernonware began with Poxon China in 1916, located in Vernon, California. Later, in 1928, it became Vernon Potteries or Vernon Kilns. The company was bought out by Metlox in 1958 and became a division of Metlox. These pieces of artistry by Vernon Kilns, Melinda Shape from 1947.  The plate design was done by Royal Hickman.

These plates are huge - 10.5" - so I can use them as chargers.  Here are some ideas with some of my dishes sets.

Danish china
Contour China Japan
 Kensington Ironstone transferware

Vernon Kilns dinnerware was made by painting or applying various patterns onto molded blanks.  During the years that Vernon Kilns manufactured dinnerware, they created and used a number of sets of molds, and these sets are referred to as "shapes".  Thus, a "shape" is really a collection of related molded dinnerware shapes, similar in design details such as the edge detail.  

Vernon Kilns' History

Vernon Kilns was founded in July 1931 after Faye G. Bennison purchased Poxon China Company in Vernon, California. Poxon China Company was built at 2310 East 52nd Street, Vernon, California, now part of Los Angeles. Bennison continued to produce Poxon lines, using Poxon shapes for some time before an earthquake in 1933 forced Bennison to develop original shapes for Vernon. Two fires in the late 1940's almost brought the end of Vernon Potteries, Ltd., but Bennison decided to rebuild and continued to flourish during a time when imports were not available. The company was not able to compete when a flood of foreign imports hit the American shelves and in 1958 Vernon Kilns sold its holding to Metlox.  Metlox continued to market some Vernon shapes and patterns under the division Vernonware until 1989. The company produced dinnerware, art pottery, figurines, ashtrays and other popular lines. All products were of earthenware, with clays from Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina and England. Glazes were developed from minerals mined in California and many patterns including all of the plaids were hand painted.

Welcome home Vernon Kilns "Arcadia." Glad to have you!

Don't know where I'm going to put you.....but we'll figure it out.


This listing is for a vintage Vernon Kilns dinner plate. The pattern is "Arcadia" and was made between 1942-1947. It is in VERY GOOD condition -no chips, cracks or crazing, just some light utensil marks in the center. I have many great, old pieces of decorative china and dinnerware I will be listing this week. This is a unique pattern and would be a wonderful addition to your collection. Please excuse flash in photos. Please check my store for more unique items.


  1. Hi
    What a GREAT Find!!! I love the edges showing with your other sets of dishes. I love chargers with some character. Thanks for visiting My Cozy Corner.

  2. I love Vernon Kilns, and your plates are lovely!


    Blessings, Debbie

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  4. Wonderful vintage're going to cherish that wonderful rim design...and the pop of yellow...WOW! Thank you for sharing your new treasure...My friends say that I'm the only person they know who stores dishes in the powder bath head knocker instead of towels and extra rolls of toilet paper. Glad you stopped by my post. Cherry Kay

  5. Hi, was wondering about a vase I inherited, marked with VERNON Made in England on the base. It is from the 1950s or maybe a bit earlier. Can't seem to find any information on the internet.

  6. CJ, you have a lot of the same interest as I do! I found your blog by searching for the Arcadia china. My mother-in-law has a whole set to sell. I'm thinking about putting them on e-bay. Can I reference your blog for the history?


Thanks for your encouraging messages! No anonymous messages. Thanks!~CJ