Who would have guessed that “the flamingo” pictured in my previous post, “F” is for…, has a connection to The Flamingo Hotel in
? ….or does it??? Las Vegas
According to BugsySiegel.net, the elegant flamingo figurine was made especially for the opening of The Flamingo Hotel in December of 1946. Supposedly, the figurine was handpicked by Siegel to be given as a gift to all the VIPs and celebrities that attended the hotel opening. The story is further told that maybe only 200 were made and many were left or broken that night leaving only about 100 in existence today. How true this is, I can’t further verify; however, a Will-George flamingo has just been listed on Ebay that is marked Flamingo Hotel on the bottom. Perhaps some of the flamingos were commissioned and stamped specifically for the hotel’s grand opening while others were standard issue. Mine is not marked Flamingo Hotel…..boo hoo!
What I do know is that the flamingo was made by The Will-George Company of
. Will-George was founded in 1943 by brothers William and George Climes in William’s Pasadena garage. They manufactured high-quality porcelain artware and in the late 1930s, their work caught the attention of actor Edgar Bergen (Candace Bergen’s father) who was so impressed that he began to finance their business. With this new backing, they moved their business to a larger facility in Los Angeles where they produced an extensive line of art pottery and became known for their bird, animal, and human figurines that directly competed with lines made by Royal Doulton. Pasadena
My flamingo is part of an elegant 4-piece set that includes a “pond” center bowl and two “reed” candleholders.
Will-George also manufactured several coordinating flamingos in other poses. Click here to see pictures....Be sure to scroll down.
So the next time you see a flamingo figurine, check out the mark on the bottom.…you just might be holding a piece of
history! Las Vegas
Linda at A La Carte loves flamingos, so I’m going to fly over to Junkin’ Finds Friday.
I'll also be linking to Vintage Inspiration Friday at Common Ground.