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  #1  
Old 22-10-16, 10:08 PM
zorgon zorgon is offline
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Default RCAF insignia on Medalta Pottery

This post is not strictly about badges but it does involve insignia in a general way so perhaps our Moderator will allow it to remain in this category.

Several manufactures have made tableware for the RCAF over the years with the common identifying factor being the RCAF King’s (Tudor) logo embossed on the items. Manufacturers include Grindley, John Maddock, J&G Meakin and Johann Haviland but probably the best known producer is Medalta of Medicine Hat, Alberta.

In antique malls and at auctions, one mainly sees the double eggcup, mustard pot with lid or the 4 oz. demitasse. The relative abundance of the latter always surprises me as one would think that espressos weren't that common a beverage for Canadians during or immediately after the war.

The first image illustrates the most commonly observed back-stamp seen for RCAF Medalta pottery although, as in this case, one sometimes just sees a “2” rather than a “52” due to a faulty date stamp. The number does refer to the year of production. Ron Getty, a long time historian of Medalta pottery, says it is believed that the 50’s production of embossed pottery was largely done for various RCAF Associations across Canada. I questioned why we wouldn’t see more during the war years and he felt that tableware produced for the many bases and BCATP centers was of generic, plane white unmarked origin albeit of heavier more robust construction than generally found in tableware.

Image two illustrates two variations of bowls, the item on the left being more commonly seen in my experience. They measure 5 ¼” and 6 ¼” respectively and possibly used for breakfast porridge or cereal and perhaps lunch soup. The 3rd picture shows various cups and saucers with the demitasse on the left. Illustrated are two versions of coffee cups. Note the slight variation in the handle and one is thicker than the other. They hold between 6 and 7 oz. comfortably; much less than modern day coffee cups which are often at least double that volume.

The 4th image is of a creamer, individual sugar bowl and club tea pot (4” high) and butter pat. I must acknowledge Dave, a fellow BBF member, for selling most of these to me many years ago. Again, all have the RCAF King’s (Tudor) crown but the bottom stamps vary slightly, indicating I think they were manufactured in the mid to late 40’s. (Medalta specialists please comment). All foreground pieces are seldom seen and quite rare. The cobalt glazed butter pat in the background measures about 3 1/8” in diameter and has the RCAF crest in gold. The stamp indicates a manufacturing date from somewhere between the early 40’s up to the mid 50’s. These blue RCAF items were probably specially ordered by senior officers from various bases across the Country. It is thought that a larger teapot was also manufactured.

In the 5th picture, there is a 5 ¼” high pitcher sitting on a 7” bread plate. In the final photo, a selection of items which might be found at the supper table is presented and illustrates a 9 ¾” dinner plate, a 9” shallow bowl (which may be for a dinner soup), a 5” fruit bowl (nappy) and a 10” serving bowl (sans lid unfortunately) which could have held potatoes or vegetables for the entire table. There are several variations of these larger serving bowls and platters (up to 16”) and being quite uncommon, demand a respectable price.
Speaking for myself, we could learn something from the smaller proportions they obviously served back in those days. Maybe smaller dishes are the first step!

Regards,
Wayne Logus
Attached Images
File Type: jpg stamp.jpg (66.9 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg bowl variations, 5.25 & 6.25 dia..jpg (83.6 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg cups and saucers.jpg (95.5 KB, 18 views)
File Type: jpg creamer, teapot, butter pat and bottom stamps.jpg (70.1 KB, 38 views)
File Type: jpg pitcher (5.25 in high) on bread plate (7.125 in).jpg (41.7 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg supper group.jpg (88.1 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg image.jpg (30.0 KB, 15 views)

Last edited by zorgon; 25-10-16 at 03:38 PM. Reason: clarity, spelling
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  #2  
Old 23-10-16, 02:17 PM
realownlee realownlee is offline
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Nice collection!
I have a few RAF marked items such as these, large mixing bowl, two plates, two mugs, a small jug, a 'trivet' I think! (has winged badge rather than usual 'RAF' in wreath or circle, so earlier I think?)
I also have an RAF coffee pot, tip of spout was broken in post, got money returned, meant to have restored 'one day'....shocked to see very similar one go for £216 on Ebay recently!...does genuinely appear to be a scarce item though.
BEWARE AcrownM (in black) marked stuff on Ebay.......
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  #3  
Old 23-10-16, 03:37 PM
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Darrell Darrell is offline
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Hi Wayne

I wanted to get one of these pieces for my Dad to remember his long RCAF/CAF career. I ended up with an egg cup and wondered how big eggs were back then.

Thanks for showing us these.

regards
Darrell
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Old 25-10-16, 03:48 PM
zorgon zorgon is offline
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Smile mutant chickens?

Darrell:
I too wondered about the mutant chickens they must have had to produce eggs that fit the large end of the egg cup and it was only a few days ago someone told me that the large end was a functional place to store and keep warm, your 2nd egg whilst eating the first. Of course, that makes a lot of sense. The nice thing about ceramic pottery is that you could pre-heat it up and keep the eggs warm even longer should you be somewhat obsessive-compulsive.

A sad story about that rarely seen coffee pot realownlee and thanks for the tip.
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  #5  
Old 25-10-16, 07:16 PM
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Darrell Darrell is offline
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Hi Zorgon

There ya go.............another learned snippet for me!! Thank you.

realownlee

Is that a bad mark or maker?

regards
Darrell
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  #6  
Old 25-10-16, 09:10 PM
Censlenov Censlenov is offline
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Being located in Medalta central i can say i've seen quite afew of these pieces over the years and have spoken with some pretty advanced Medalta collectors. Virtually no records exist from this time so its hard to say for certain what Medalta made and in what quantity. Next year i'll be working on a project where we'll be excavating through the old Medalta spoils pits it'll be interesting to see what kind of crockery surfaces. In my own collection i have a bunch of egg cups and a mustard jar.

Cheers
Chris
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  #7  
Old 26-10-16, 03:54 PM
realownlee realownlee is offline
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Darrell,
I believe those items to be totally fake, and I am not the only one, if you look at the finish on some of the the items themselves, it is extremely poor, probably cheaply purchased 'seconds'.
I have been a collector of RAF items (mainly) for many years and have only become aware of these AcrownM items fairly recently.

Also, in my opinion, the green stuff, marked 'officers mess' and 'Hendon' is just wrong.
So, unless someone can prove otherwise? I wont touch the stuff!

Zorgon. The coffee pot is probably worth having restored now, if that's the price they go for! (no guarantee of course, next one might only make £10.00) as it doesn't owe me anything after having cost refunded!
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  #8  
Old 02-11-16, 01:52 AM
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Wingnut Wingnut is offline
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Glad you still have the teapot set!! I miss it, thanks for acknowledgement.
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  #9  
Old 07-11-16, 04:12 PM
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Vuhlkansu Vuhlkansu is offline
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Some nice items you got. I have not seen that tea-pot or a few of the other items you have, so I will have to keep a lookout. I have been getting a small collection myself. I am aiming to get a 4 place setting but it seems the plates are just so darn hard to find!
I am always willing to do some trades as I got some extras.
MOST of my items are medalta, but I shall see what others I have and take some pictures of the manufactures mark.
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  #10  
Old 07-11-16, 04:39 PM
edstorey edstorey is offline
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Default RCAF Pottery

That is a nice collection of RCAF pottery. Some of it was still turning up in the OR's Dinning Hall at CFB Rockcliffe in Ottawa during the 1980s, too bad I did not pay much attention to it back then. It probably all went in the dumpster when the base closed out in the 1990s.
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Old 10-11-16, 11:09 PM
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Vuhlkansu Vuhlkansu is offline
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I would imagine they were auctioned off for pennies, rather then tossed out. They did the same when Kapyong barracks in Winnipeg closed down a few years ago. Hundreds of people came to see what they were selling off.
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Old 31-10-17, 11:44 PM
zorgon zorgon is offline
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I’ll add a bit more info to this thread about a couple of other manufacturers of RCAF dishes, both with Queen’s crown crests and dating from the 50’s or 60’s.

I recently came across a 10” dinner plate with a “Sovereign Potters Hotel China” back-stamp. Sovereign was a manufacturer of dishes and potteries in Hamilton Ontario circa 1933 to 1973 but apparently most active around the 2nd world war. One of my plate examples is dated to (19)56. The RCAF crest on the front of the plate is finer in detail than those seen on other RCAF pottery.

A line of simple dinnerware under the name of “Duraline” was made by Grindley in England for the RCAF. All of the examples I own date from the 1960’s. The company manufactured coffee cups, 5 ¾” saucers, both 7 and 8” plates and water pitchers to name a few items. Two examples of back-stamps are illustrated.
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