History of Red Wing Stoneware Company

The first Red Wing Stoneware Company was organized February 1, 1877 to manufacture stoneware. In August of 1877, construction began for the new factory. By January of 1878, the new buildings housing the kilns and clay were ready for use. Production began with two large up-draft kilns fired with wood and coal. There were four potters’ wheels and several drying frames. Power for the plant came from a 24 horsepower steam engine. By August of 1878, the company was gaining notice as a producer of “useful and beautiful” wares.

Around midnight on February 16, 1884, a fire from the kiln shed spread throughout the shops and warehouse. The factory was then rebuilt on a larger scale. The new company merged with another local business becoming the Red Wing Stoneware and Sewer Pipe Company. Throughout those early years, Red Wing, Minnesota hosted several stoneware companies: Minnesota Stoneware Company, North Star Stoneware Company and Red Wing Stoneware and Sewer Pipe Company.

In March of 1906, these potteries merged into one company, forming a common marketing unit--the "Red Wing Union Stoneware Company." This new company identified itself with the familiar Red Wing Union Stoneware Company oval stamped on the sides of products.

Art pottery and dinnerware became more representative than “Stoneware” and in 1936 the name was changed to "Red Wing Potteries". In 1967, Red Wing Potteries closed its production facilities.

In 1984, John Falconer acquired the technical records, name and legal rights of the Red Wing Stoneware Company and stoneware production was revitalized in Red Wing Minnesota.

Tom Woodruff purchased the Red Wing Stoneware Company in 1998. He and a team of skilled artisans proudly continue the tradition of producing excellent quality, American made, Red Wing Stoneware.

Current lines include kitchenware for daily use along with decorative accent pieces for the entire home. Red Wing Stoneware Company also produces a full line of personalized and advertising pieces for companies, organizations, city celebrations and fundraisers. These pieces are decorated to suit the logo design of individual groups.

We invite you to visit our factory and showroom. Tours are given weekdays at 10:30-AM, 1-PM and 3:30-PM all year long. Tour charges are $3.00 for 18+, $2.00 for 12-17 yrs. and 11 and under- Free. With each admission you will receive a coupon for $5.00 off of a purchase of $25.00 or more. Large groups and bus tours are always welcome at a moment’s notice or may be scheduled at your convenience. To schedule a tour, email sales@redwingstoneware.com or call us at 651.388.4610.

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