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McCoy Pottery

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Calling all collectors! Here’s the deal on McCoy POTTERY!

Antique hunters and collectors of vintage wares have long held McCOY POTTERY in high regard. Known for its often whimsical designs, striking colors, and shiny glazes, McCOY POTTERY can also be used in a surprising number of ways. From planters, pitchers, vases and mugs to display bowls, flower pots, tea sets, umbrella stands, jardiniere, urns, cookie jars, and tea sets, authentic pieces of McCoy are a collector’s dream come true.

In this post we’ll answer the following questions:

  • Q: What’s special about McCoy pottery?
  • Q: How much is McCoy pottery worth?
  • Q: How can you identify McCoy pottery?
  • Q: How do I know if my McCoy is real?

Well, read on to find out what we’ve learned about collecting McCoy over the years. Before that, please remember to PIN pics of your McCoy pieces on a favourite PINTEREST design and decor boards. You can also SHARE your pics with friends on your favourite socials like FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM. Don’t forget to tag #weekendatthecottage whenever you post pics so we can see them too!

Here are some things to look for and consider as you begin collecting McCOY POTTERY:

Three different McCoy pottery planters.
Three different styles of planters from solid glaze to a more intricate hand-painted variety.


The J.W. McCoy Pottery Company started production of their distinctive pottery pieces in 1899 eventually becoming the Nelson McCoy Sanitary Stoneware Company in 1910. The company continued production in Roseville, Ohio until 1991. Many of their most iconic pieces were crafted in the 1930s and 1940s and the company became known for decorative wares as opposed to the utilitarian variety. Unlike the storied American art potteries such as Weller, Roseville, Redlands, Cowan and Dryden, McCoy was less expensive and sold to the masses. For the complete history of McCoy Pottery make sure to visit our friends at the McCoy Pottery Collectors Society. You can also click HERE for the WIKI article about McCoy.

The distinctive, highly stylized McCoy Pottery hallmark.
What a great logo and even better advertising!


Virtually every piece of pottery created by McCoy is machine-made and bares the hallmark pictured above. Look for the hallmark where the “M” and “c” are entwined, followed by the “C” and “o” overlapping. The only true way of avoiding fakes and reproductions is to confirm the piece of pottery was made by the Nelson McCoy Pottery Company. We suggest looking in reference books; if you see it there, it’s real. Love the advertising that came with the logo though – brilliant!

McCoy planters
Same design, with different colours. It was a novel way of catching the customer’s eye!


No matter how you spell it, color (or colour) is very important in recognizing McCoy.  From solid pastels in pale pink, turquoise, and yellow, to their more elegant multicolored blended glaze designs and graduated green glazes, colour is perhaps the first thing about McCoy that catches your eye. When going to collect consider gathering complimentary colored groupings or, different designs in the same colour. A monochromatic collection of McCoy is also a great idea.

A large McCoy pitcher
Sure, pretty to look at but imagine a glass of cold lemonade poured from this gorgeous pitcher. Swoon!


Although designed with a nod to being decorative, many collectors select pieces based on function. If vases are your thing look for pieces from the Wild Rose, Butterfly, or Blossom Time collections. If you love cookies, then why not start a McCoy Cookie Jar collection? I love planters, especially the ones where the saucers are attached to the pot. There are lots of ways to build your collection, find one that works for you.

A classic McCoy cookie jar hand painted and in the shape of a ripened peach.
Imagine having this cookie jar on the counter in your kitchen. You’d be baking cookies 247.


The final thing to consider when collecting McCoy Pottery is condition and this often most affects the value. Ideally, you want to find a piece in perfect condition, so no chips, cracks or firing imperfections.

McCoy planters with a distinctive basketweave and dot design.
Perfect for houseplants and spring bulbs!

If for whatever reason you see a piece and it gets your heart thumping, negotiate a fair price, and snatch it up.

Before we send you off looking for your next treasure or fabulous find, don’t forget to check out our excellent story about CLARICE CLIFF TRANSFERWARE plus a special feature about our amazing CLARICE CLIFF TEAPOT!

Now, get going! The real McCoy Pottery is out there. Find yours today!

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