When my dear friend Lenny sent me a picture from an antique store of a pottery Indian maiden with a bowl in her lap…..
I was instantly obsessed.
He, as well as I, had a vision of that bowl filled with small silver and turquoise trinkets. The kind of trinkets that I currently have non-Indian maiden shaped bowls filled with.
eBay solved that issue for me,
It wasn’t long before she was sitting on my desk and her bowl was filled with all these little wonderous things….
(a few small Zuni fetishes, silver/turquoise crosses, a couple Fred Harvey pins, and Hunter S. Thompson for Sheriff buttons…..you know, all the usual desk clutter)
But there was still more to come.
I found this dancing Indian chief on eBay too.
He landed on my desk right next to his mate.
Then I found this groovy arrow-head ashtray….just imagine the wonders this thing could hold……
How about wrangling keys and loose change near the front door?
Too bad it’s only 4 inched long…..
Not big enough to hold much of anything, but still pretty cool.
These were all made by the Frankoma Pottery company.
Frankoma Pottery was founded by University of Oklahoma professor John Frank in 1933. He named his newly founded company Frankoma; using his last name and the last 3 letters of the state he lived in……Oklahoma. Frank originally used the light hued Ada clay for his pottery, but then switched to locally sourced brick-red clay.
Other than the native figures and ashtrays, the couple also developed china in western-themed patterns like Plainsman, West Wind,
and Wagon Wheel.
Frank and his wife Grace Lee continued to run the company until his death in 1973, leaving the company to their daughter Joniece who was forced to sell for bankruptcy reasons in 1991. Frankoma finally closed their factory doors in 2004.
Next time y’all see a piece that looks distinctly “Oklahomian?”,
….flip it over,
Because it just might be a piece of Frankoma.