Who is Lefton?

A Hungarian immigrant named George Lefton moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1939 where he opened the George Zoltan Lefton Company in 1940.  While he sold clothing and sportswear for six years, it is said that he had a penchant for fine china and figurines.


In 1946 he had a Japanese-American friend, Nunome, who introduced him to business contacts in Japan that helped him start a business importing porcelain objects that were made in Occupied Japan.   Lefton is known as one of the first American businessmen to do business with Japan after World War II.   World War II occurred from September 1, 1939 to September 2, 1945.

George Lefton imported Made in Occupied Japan china to the United States in 1946.

George Lefton played a big role in the recovery of Japan after the war.  The china and porcelain he imported to the United States, although not of the highest quality when compared with other countries, was still of very good quality and affordable for the average American.  The demand for decent, affordable porcelain objects created a valuable industry that kick-started the Japanese economy.

Porcelain objects that were imported from 1946 to 1952 were, by law, marked as “Made in Occupied Japan”.  After 1952, Lefton marked most of his goods with a series of Lefton trademark back-stamps and foil stickers that help us to put a date on his china and figurines.

Ranging in taste from elegant to kitsch, Lefton teacups and saucers, figurines, plates, planters, tableware, kitchenware and other porcelain goods have become highly sought after collector’s items that have increased in value over the past 70 years.  Here are some random examples of Lefton China:

We only have  two Lefton pieces available for sale at this time, but we think that we might discover more in the attic.  If we do, we will post them here.

Come and see what we have for you at TheMichiganAttic Shop on Etsy.com.