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Founded in 1814 as Hill Pottery in Flemington, New Jersey, Stangl Pottery was an important American pottery maker during the first half of the 20th century. They competed with both casual dinnerware lines priced to be affordable for the middle class, while they also made art pottery at a time when there were many innovative American producers of more expensive handmade wares. From its founding, the company produced industrial earthenware pieces like jars and storage vessels made from the rich red clay of New Jersey. In 1864, Abram Fulper bought the company and refocused the production on the production of more sophisticated and durable stoneware. Changing the name to Fulper Pottery, the move was made into art pottery with the introduction of the Vasekraft line in 1909. In 1910, ceramic engineer Martin Stangl joined Fulper Pottery to focus on designing and producing new glazes and shapes. Stangl soon left in 1914 to start work at Haeger, where his influence evolved Haeger to produce designs reminiscent of his work while at Fulper.

Stangl left Haeger in 1919 to return to Fulper where he rose to executive ranks and planned the company's introduction of a colorful line of dinnerware in 1924. As production increased, the company expanded production across 3 factories although one of them- the original Flemington factory- burned down in 1929. That year, Martin Stangl bought Fulper and immediately changed the name to Stangl Pottery. During this period, Stangl began to retreat from direct competition with Rookwood, Grueby, and others in higher end art pottery and focused on formed ceramics and simpler matte glazes. The pottery survived the years of World War II by focusing production on a line of highly detailed, hand painted bird figurines which were widely collected then as they are still today. The company took their efforts at realism in depicting birds further when they first produced in 1940 a line of birds based on the "Birds of America" prints of John James Audubon and designed by Auguste Jacob. World War II also had the effect of cutting off the importation of popular bird figurines produced by European factories. New bird lines continued to be introduced until 1955, but by this point European imports had returned and thus reduced demand for Stangl designs. Whimsical wig stands were introduced in 1965, originally as a special order for a company called Landing Gifts. The wig stands proved to be very popular and were and were in general made on a wood base stamped with the Stangl name although Stangl hat stands can also be found on a round pottery base or no base. While almost all Stangl wig stands were female, they also made a very small run of male stands for use with toupees, and their rarity translates into high prices in today's market. Some Stantl wig stands were converted by Stangl into lamps.

Most Stangl production was fully marked, in contrast to some substantial unmarked production by Fulper, Grueby, Haeger, and others during the years after World War I. Stangl used multiple marks to convey information about a piece including designations for the company, the carver, and the painter. In 1935, one of the original 3 factories had been turned into a retail showroom for teh company, and throughout its history Stangl sold direct to the public via this showroom as well as in department stores across the U.S. Stangl Pottery was bought by Pfaltzgraf in 1978 and ceased production, but Stangle Pottery continues to be one of the most popular collecting lines into the 21st century.

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Collectors Encyclopedia of Stangl: Artware, Lamps, and Birds: Identification & Values The House of Haeger 1914-1944: The Revitalization of American Art Pottery (Schiffer Book for Collectors)
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