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Clay, Ceramic and Stoneware Marbles

Before glass marbles became common, antique toy marbles were made from ceramics, including clay, stoneware, and china or porcelain. From the late 1500s through the early 1700s salt-glazed stoneware marbles were made first by the Dutch and then later by the Germans.

Clay marbles were first made in America in 1884 by The Akron Toy Company. Prior to 1884 they were imported from Germany.

Billions of the plain clay marbles were made in the USA from 1884 until about 1950. Despite being antiques, these clay "commies" are still common today and not really collectible.

On the other hand, certain ceramic marbles are quite collectible. These include the very affordable glazed Bennington marbles colored brown, tan, blue or "fancy" as well as the early "China" marbles that were painted with often intricate line patterns, or even miniature painted scenes. Especially rare and desirable are the "Pennsylvania Dutch china" marbles from the late 1800s, which feature charming hand painted designs. These can easily fetch more than $500 when they do come up for sale.

Druzy Uruguay Crystal Pocket Agate Sphere  3.77
Druzy Uruguay Crystal Pocket Agate Sphere 3.77"
$99.99
Time Remaining: 1d 13h 23m
Buy It Now for only: $145.00
Vintage akro agate limeade corkscrew marble 41/64
Vintage akro agate limeade corkscrew marble 41/64
$3.25 (4 Bids)
Time Remaining: 5d 14h 38m
Akro Agate Two Color Special Red & Black Marble 45/64
Akro Agate Two Color Special Red & Black Marble 45/64
$7.00 (9 Bids)
Time Remaining: 3h 41m
Bennington, Rollers, Crockery - Non-Glass Marble Collection  050118-54  SS8
Bennington, Rollers, Crockery - Non-Glass Marble Collection 050118-54 SS8
$104.97
Time Remaining: 28d 4h 6m
Buy It Now for only: $104.97
Vintage champion agate swirl marble 41/64
Vintage champion agate swirl marble 41/64
$1.99 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 2d 14h 36m
VITRO AGATE PEEWEE JEWEL MARBLES FROM THE BLAINE LEMON COLLECTION
VITRO AGATE PEEWEE JEWEL MARBLES FROM THE BLAINE LEMON COLLECTION
$6.50 (2 Bids)
Time Remaining: 3d 3h 16m
Vintage agate faceted marble 47/64
Vintage agate faceted marble 47/64
$1.99 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 4d 14h 48m
 Akro Agate Hybrid Superman shooter rare!!!!!  .832 amazing!! nm
Akro Agate Hybrid Superman shooter rare!!!!! .832 amazing!! nm
$20.50 (8 Bids)
Time Remaining: 13h 51m
Vintage akro agate carnelian swirl marble 5/8+-
Vintage akro agate carnelian swirl marble 5/8+-
$1.99 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 5d 14h 37m
3 Beautiful Akro Agate Snakes 5/8
3 Beautiful Akro Agate Snakes 5/8" Blue Yellow Orange
$6.50 (2 Bids)
Time Remaining: 2d 12h 22m
 Akro Agate Indian Blanket  ingot shooter htf !!!!!  .709 awesome!! nm
Akro Agate Indian Blanket ingot shooter htf !!!!! .709 awesome!! nm
$3.25 (3 Bids)
Time Remaining: 13h 48m
 marble Alley Agate   PENNSBORO 1932-1936    j17LL
marble Alley Agate PENNSBORO 1932-1936 j17LL
$3.99
Time Remaining: 4d 4h 47m

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Marble Trivia

Before marbles were called 'marbles' in England, they were known as 'bowls' or 'knickers'.