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The History of Cookie Jars

The cookie jar originated in the 18th century as the British biscuit jar. In 1929, the cookie jar made its way to America. This early version was simply a glass jar with a metal, screw-on lid. The stoneware cookie jar that many of us are familiar with today was introduced in 1930s America, and the earliest versions were simple, cylindrical jars with painted-on flowers or leaves for decoration. Ceramic cookie jars were introduced by the Brush Pottery Company during the 1930s, and other companies quickly followed suit. By the end of the decade, the designs had become much more creative; consumers could find ceramic cookie jars shaped like fruits, vegetables, animals, and people. The years 1940 through 1970 are considered the heyday of collectible cookie jars. Some of the popular designs of the time included: advertising cookie jars (think Coca Cola, Pillsbury, Nabisco, and even John Deere); cartoon jars (shaped like beloved characters such as Snoopy, Garfield, and Betty Boop); nursery rhyme jars (modelled after popular characters like Mother Goose or Little Red Riding Hood); holiday cookie jars (think Christmas trees, Santa, and the Easter Bunny); house cookie jars (shaped like houses, you could build an entire mini-town with these!); cookie jars modelled after icons (think The Beatles or I Love Lucy); and lighthouse cookie jars. Today many people seek out these cookie jars as collector’s items and treasure the ones they are able to get their hands on.

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