Frankoma Pottery


John Frank, a graduate of the Art Institute of Chicago, moved to Oklahoma in 1927. While serving as a professor in the ceramic art department at the University of Oklahoma, he met some geology professors, from whom he learned about the local clays. In 1933, he established Frank Potteries, which operated one small kiln. As the company became more successful, he quit his teaching post and renamed the company Frankoma. In 1939, he expanded operations and moved the factory to Sapulpa. Using hand-crafted molds and a unique kiln-firing process, Frankoma blends traditional pottery making skills with modern engineering techniques.

Activity Details

Activity Type:Trips and Destinations
Discipline:Material Science
Topic(s):Technology/Materials
Grade:K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Time:Full day

Fun Fact:The Frankoma Pottery makes its clayware using local sources. When the pottery was founded, it purchased its clay from a source in Ada. That clay was tan in color. In Sapulpa, where the pottery now is located, the clay is red. Thus, collectors are able to identify where a Frankoma item was made simply by looking at the color of the clayware.