Page 8 - Volume 2, Issue 4

The Past
In 1920, one of the original six
Rapp brothers, Matthew, decided
to restart and refurbish the old
pottery works. He brought his
four sons into the new business
renamed Cliftwood Art Potteries
Incorporated. The goal was to
create the nation’s finest high-end
art pottery.
Cliftwood vases, urns, bulb
bowls, compotes, consoles and
figurines sold by the thousands.
Almost all had the elusive paper
labels. The pieces we find today
are exquisitely beautiful with
classic art deco shapes. Some
pieces reflect the Egyptian design
craze thrilling the nation.
When Cliftwood began
creating lamps out of some of the
vases and urns, that division was
extremely popular and kept their
national salesmen very busy.
The inset displays the actual
color chart and wording their
customers could choose from.
Matthew Rapp died in 1938.
With World War II approaching,
his sons made the decision to
sell Cliftwood to three Peoria
businessmen in 1940. The pottery
at this location would burn down
in 1944.
After Cliftwood Art Pottery
started in 1920, the other Rapp
Brothers and their many sons
regrouped and began Morton
Pottery in 1922. They assured
Samuel, who also was part of
Cliftwood, that they were not
in competition with his art
pottery. They would concentrate
on everyday items people used
in their homes: mixing bowls,
storage crocks, jardinières,
pitchers, teapots and the like.
They started many new lines
of production such as the Pilgrim
Pottery line of blue and green
kitchen products in 1927. They
were one of the first to introduce
color to these products. In 1929,
the Amish Pottery line proved
popular. The Woodland Pottery
products were pieces that were
speckled with shades of green,
brown and yellow. They are
highly collectable today.
Morton Pottery was very
successful and survived the Great
Depression with no slowing
(1920 – 1940)