Stein Marks © is an independent site which has been created and will be maintained "free to view" for the benefit of all Stein Collectors. It lists all names Alphabetically, By Location and also attempts to list By Category. In addition, there is a "Logo Identification" page, which helps you identify your stein, even if there is no recognisable name or initials. Where you see an underline, that is an indication there is a live link, either to an associated page or document in Stein Marks, or to an alternate site holding further information.
My initial vision for Stein Marks was for an on-line, colour photograph based, version of Les Hopper’s previous work. However the flexibility of the web allowed me, very quickly to expand that original concept. To engage new followers to the hobby, I have added sample steins or lids, so that they can easily view the richness and vast variety of the pieces available. With Locations and Categories I hope to help the research possibilities for more serious collectors. I am also slowly adding company and personal histories, in which I have attempted in most cases to utilise the contents of contemporaneous documents supplied to me, rather than rewrite more modern publications. Language has been, and still is my biggest problem; however I have gained many friends along the way who are willing to help where necessary. This project has taken me to places I never expected to go, requiring me to study political, commercial, social and cultural history, demonstrating where for instance, Europe has been torn apart and reformed over the centuries and includes the diaspora of more than one ethnic group; together with the geography of two continents.
In 2010 I received the annual Service Award from Stein Collectors International (SCI) for the establishment of Stein Marks. Then in 2012, I was extremely gratified when Stein Marks was further appreciated, with SCI's premier annual award; the title of "Master Steinologist". Stein Marks is not just the work of one man. It would have got nowhere without the help and assistance of many people both inside and outside the stein collecting community. Therefore I have dedicated this award to all those people who have helped with both photographs and the results of their research. Without them it would never have happened. Stein Marks will always be a work in progress, so I look forward to collaboration with an even wider cross-section of stein collectors in the future.
Back in 2009, at the inception of Stein Marks, I remember a conversation with my internet host, where I said I would be happy with a couple of hundred hits per month on the site, thinking I would open a bottle of wine when I hit three figures. The site is now achieving over six thousand entries per month into the database from people doing multiple searches. Thank you! it has made building this site worthwhile.
I have also been agreeably surprised by the success of the Identifications and Valuations service, which I launched a year ago. I understand it can be difficult, without any knowledge, to have to scroll through over a thousand pages to find your particular mark. I too, cannot remember the owner of every mark listed, but at least I know where to look. Remember, I only charge where I know the answer, and can point you to the relevant page/s.
Chris Wheeler, Worcestershire, United Kingdom. 20th March 2017