Sears, Roebuck & Co. in the 1930s and early 1940s

by Helen Allen
Volume 11 No. 6 - February 1985

Petalware Last year we looked at some sets of DG offered by Montgomery Wards during the 1930s. This year, I'd like to share some offerings of Sears, Roebuck and Co. during those years.

How about a 32-piece dinner set of pink Petalware for #2.29 (plus 20 cents if you wanted a sugar and creamer)? The advertisement is shown at right. The same set booked $51.00 in Weatherman'*s first Price Trends in 1969, and books for $102.00 in Schliesmann's Price Survey today (plus $7.00 for sugar and creamer). That bargain was in the Sears, Roebuck & Co. Fall and Winter l937-38 book.

Diana One year later, Sears offered Diana (at left) in your choice of Rose, Topaz or clear crystal (one price). An 18-piece starter set was 95 cents, while a 32-piece set, service for six, was $1.89. Again, sugar and creamer were extra - 17 cents. The large set today books for $121.50 in pink, $134.00 in amber, and $75.50 in clear.

Reflecting the trend of the era, a clear glass set of dishes was in Sears' 1942-43 catalog - Royal Lace (Ad shown below right). You could buy a 15-piece luncheon set for 97 cents. A 32-piece dinner set for six was $1.84 and a 44-piece dinner set for eight including cream soup cups was $2.96. The 1969 Price Trends puts the large set at about $44.50, while today's Price Survey lists it at $299.00.

Royal Lace The same book introduced the "newest thing in glass dinnerware. Gleaming white ..." decorated with an American Beauty rose. This Cremax pattern was $3.79 for service for six; it books at $113.00 today.

Cremax The following year, Cremax was shown in the catalog without decoration, but was "not available" for some reason (as you can see from the Ad at left). It was going to be open stock as well as by 20 or 40-piece sets.

A set of 6 clear Daisy grill plates for $1.00 was in the 1943-44 catalog. On the same "$1.00 any set" page was "Vintage," nice accessory pieces for salads, desserts, tea and toast, or beverage sets. The tumblers sound very pretty with clusters of deep blue grapes and silver-gray leaves decorations.

Looking through old catalogs is a fun thing to do on a snowy winter afternoon. Hope you, too, enjoy these glimpses of our DG via old Wish Books, and their current values.