General Question

Jude's avatar

Is there a way that you could tell how old this china is?

Asked by Jude (32134points) May 20th, 2011

I have my grandmother’s china. On the back it says “L 3 Johnson Bros. Made in England Ironstone”. My grandma had it in her china cabinet for years. My Grandma passed away 10 year ago. She would have been 100. Just wondering if you could help me find out the year.


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Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Will you describe what it looks like? Would you be able to upload a photo?

Here is some information on Johnson Brothers.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

So far I’ve found a reference to the Johnson brothers taking over a china business in England in 1882. There were 3 of them, I’ll keep looking.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Jude Looks they could be anywhere from 1882 to recent, so is there any other distinguishing marks or lettering?

flutherother's avatar

There are a few pages from a book about the company here

lillycoyote's avatar

@Jude If you can post a picture of the makers mark I might be able to help you. I used to collect pottery and dinnerware and I have a book with pictures of makers’ marks and what years that particular mark was used by that manufacturer. I might be able to find your mark in the book and date the china for you.

Edit: Sorry I just remembered that my books if for Amercan pottery only, sorry, but I am looking for Johnson Brothers marks online.

Kardamom's avatar

Here is som info about Johnson Bros. trademarks.

Here’s a general pottery marks identification site but you have to pay for a subscription.

You should check the local listings in your town to see if there are any ceramics/pottery/dishware appraisers. You also might be able to speak with a curator at your local Historical Society.

lillycoyote's avatar

Another good resource is Replacements, Ltd.; you just have to slog through a lot of stuff, but if you find your grandmother’s pattern you should be able to date it. Another possibility is to go to Borders or Barnes and Nobles and see if they have a books on Johnson Bros. in their books on collectibles or check your local library.

Jude's avatar

I am heading home right now. When I get there, I’ll answer your questions. :)

BarnacleBill's avatar

Post a picture of your china. I have two sets of Johnson Bros. myself.

Pink roses with gold rim?

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Contact a company such as or with a picture of the front and back of one the clearest pieces you have. Some patterns sharing the same name by the same company will have slight changes over the years such as a detail added, removed, shade of glaze change, etc.

maryh1956's avatar

the is a great resource for all Staffordshire potteries, of which Johnson Brothers is one, so long as you know the maker’s name, as they’re listed alphabetically. Johnson brothers have been in business since the late 19th century, so seeing the mark makes it easier to date

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