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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.

ANTIQUE DECORATIVE CLAY CARPET OR LAWN BALLS BOWLING BOWLS
ANTIQUE DECORATIVE CLAY CARPET OR LAWN BALLS BOWLING BOWLS
$49.99
Time Remaining: 10h 59m
Charleston,SC Privy Dug  3 Bennington Clay Marbles 1870's-1890's
Charleston,SC Privy Dug 3 Bennington Clay Marbles 1870's-1890's
$5.00
Time Remaining: 7d 10h 13m
Buy It Now for only: $5.00
Latticinio handmade German Marbles Bennington Marbles Plus More Estate Find
Latticinio handmade German Marbles Bennington Marbles Plus More Estate Find
$40.00 (15 Bids)
Time Remaining: 12h 43m
Antique Hand-Made Brown Colored Bennington Glazed Clay Marble - 3/4
Antique Hand-Made Brown Colored Bennington Glazed Clay Marble - 3/4"
$6.99
Time Remaining: 12h 49m
3 Large Antique Bennington Glazed Crockery Shooter Marbles, 1-3/8
3 Large Antique Bennington Glazed Crockery Shooter Marbles, 1-3/8",1-3/8",1-1/4"
$9.95 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 14h 23m
Lot of 40 Antique Clay Marbles, Assorted Colors, Sizes, 3 Shooters,
Lot of 40 Antique Clay Marbles, Assorted Colors, Sizes, 3 Shooters, "Commies"
$7.95 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 14h 28m
22 Antique Handmade Clay Marbles (Includes Brown/Blue Small German Bennington)
22 Antique Handmade Clay Marbles (Includes Brown/Blue Small German Bennington)
$12.99
Time Remaining: 5d 19h 20m
Buy It Now for only: $12.99
ATTIC FIND OF HANDMADE & MACHINE MADE CLAY & SWIRL ANTIQUE MARBLES
ATTIC FIND OF HANDMADE & MACHINE MADE CLAY & SWIRL ANTIQUE MARBLES
$70.00 (5 Bids)
Time Remaining: 14h 29m
 VERY RARE  ANTIQUE 11/16  GERMAN PINK-RED BENNINGTON MARBLE..
VERY RARE ANTIQUE 11/16 GERMAN PINK-RED BENNINGTON MARBLE..
$7.99 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 17h 32m
LOT OF 30 ANTIQUE/VINTAGE CLAY MARBLES
LOT OF 30 ANTIQUE/VINTAGE CLAY MARBLES
$5.95 (1 Bid)
Time Remaining: 1d 7h 44m
Three Old Antique Hand Made Faceted Agate Marbles
Three Old Antique Hand Made Faceted Agate Marbles
$4.99
Time Remaining: 1d 8h 59m
Nine Early Vintage Marbles Onion Skin Onionskin Clay Shooter Lot
Nine Early Vintage Marbles Onion Skin Onionskin Clay Shooter Lot
$12.00
Time Remaining: 27d 14h 17m
Buy It Now for only: $12.00

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Marble Trivia

The first mass-produced children's toy was clay marbles by Sam Dyke in Akron, Ohio in the late 1880s. At peak production more than one million a day were made.