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Kim's Salt and Pepper Shaker Page
History of Shakers


History of Shakers
Shaker Basics
Shaker Resources
Places to Buy Shakers
My Collection

Looking backward...

History of Salt and Pepper Shakers

Salt and Pepper Shakers have a long and rich history. Before salt and pepper shakers as we know them today, people in the Victorian era placed their salt in open cellers. Salt came in rock form, and it had to be chipped off to be put on food.

Early salt shakers were actually salt mills. They contained a piece inside the shaker that broke the salt into pieces. This feature may also be found in some salt shakers now.

As salt production improved, salt shakers no longer needed the arm to break the salt up. Salt shakers began to take their more modern form.

The production of salt and pepper shakers really took off in the 1940's with the birth of modern ceramics. It became easier to make shakers in a variety of shapes and designs. The market for souvenir shakers and novelty shakers grew with the capacity to produce such items affordably.

Today, salt and pepper shakers can be found in nearly every conceivable shape and size. They are made in a variety of materials including wood, metal, ceramics, glass, and plastics.

History of Collecting

It is believed that for as long as there have been shakers, there have been collectors. However, it was not a popular item to collect until the birth of ceramics. With the advent of ceramics, shakers became more available and more varied. The number of novelty and souvenir shakers exploded, and with that explosion came an explosion in collectors.

The internet has changed collecting shakers, as well. Now people all over the world have access to shakers that previously could only be found in particular regions.

Why Collect?

There are a number of reasons that people start collecting. Some buy a set and can't stop! Others inherit another's collection and decide to add to it. However you start your collection, there are a number of good reasons to collect.

*Salt and Pepper shakers are relatively inexpensive to collect. Some sets are quite expensive, but most are between $5 and $50.

*Salt and pepper shakers are a good way to capture memories. There are a large number of souvenir and commemorative shakers available. You can also purchase sets that remind you of people in your life.

*Salt and pepper shakers make you smile! If this is your reason, you are likely too hooked to stop!

*Salt and pepper shaker increase in value over time (as they become more rare). This is not the only reason you should collect!