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In the Good Old Days Antiques Corner This Week in History
Antiques Corner

A Chic Chick

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Question: This old cookie jar belonged to my grandmother or my great-grandmother. Both of them were farm women from southern Illinois and sold chicken eggs for extra money. The cookie jar is in pristine condition and measures 12 1/2 inches high, 7 1/2 inches wide and approximately 9 inches deep. No brand name is stamped in the ceramic bottom or lid. Can you give me any information about the maker, age and value of this family piece?

Answer: Brightly painted ceramic jars in whimsical figural shapes became popular in the early 1930s when the Great Depression prompted folks to bake cookies at home rather than buy them daily at their local bakery. Production of such amusing decorative jars resumed after World War II and continued even after the introduction of plastic food-storage containers. By then, cookie jars were reaching collectible status. American Bisque, an all-around pottery in Williamstown, W.V., manufactured your chick cookie jar around 1959. The company stopped producing cookie jars in 1973 and closed in 1983. If it is in as excellent condition as you say it is, your vintage cookie jar is valued at $75 to $125.

-- By Tom Hoepf, associate editor of Auction Central News

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