The Morimuro brothers started importing and selling “Asian China” in New York in the late 1800’s. Since not much was available to them, they decided to produce their own high quality China pieces. And so, the Noritake China factory was started in 1904 in Noritake, Aichi, Japan, thus the name.
Their variety of pieces were hand painted and colorful. The pieces ranged from vases, teapots, cigarette sets, pin dishes and dinnerware. They can be found in antique shops, at collectibles shows, even in thrift stores, if you’re lucky.
The age of the pieces is dated by the type of mark that is backstamped on it. A piece is considered to be “antique” if it is 100 years old, or “collectible / vintage” if it is 25 to 50 years old. The Noritake maker’s mark has changed over the years. Most often it is a letter M inside a wreath. The later mark changed to the letter N in the wreath.
On modern pieces, the company produces several patterns of dinnerware currently, the full name “Noritake” and “made in Japan” is found.
Do a quick internet search for Noritake mark and click Images to see their various makers marks.