Southern Porcelain

Random Notes

What is this reference? Ceramic historian Garrison Stradling produced a detailed study in 1996

Excellent article on the Crown Jewels of the Wire web site ( )

Index to Richmond County History by John J. O'Shea, Volumes 1-15, 1969 - 1983.  Published by the Richmond County Historical Society 1987, with the assistance of the R.J. Taylor, Jr. Foundation and Julius Ariail.  Augusta, Georgia
© 1987 Richmond County Historical Society.

This index to Richmond County History is primarily a name index to volumes 1-15 for 1969-1983. The index includes the volume number, issue number, and page number for each item listed. For example, under letter "A" there is a listing for Aiken Mill. Following the name appear these numbers: 04:01:035. This indicates that there is a reference to the Aiken Mill in Richmond County History in volume 4, number 1, and it appears on page 35. ( )
This information is from
Of minor importance is the Southern Porcelain Manufacturing Co., established in 1856 at Kaolin, South
Carolina by William H. Farrar, who had been a Bennington stockholder. Numerous potters followed him
here, the modeller Josiah Jones as manager in 1857, when the Cartlidge factory closed, and next year
[when Bennington also failed], Fenton was there briefly on his way to Peoria, Illinois, where he built an
unsuccessful works. Until fire destroyed the factory in 1863-4 only 'a fair porcelain' was produced at
Kaolin, such as the coarsely designed Corn pitchers of 1859-61 [Barber, pp. 188-9]. But to this site six
miles from Augusta, potters were still attracted as they had been in Duché's time more than a century
Barber, Edwin Atlee (1851-1916).. The Pottery and Porcelain of the United States. 1893. Reprint (Rev.
            ed., 1909). New York: Feingold & Lewis, 1979.


...kaolin mining was begun by Southern Porcelain Manufacturing Company in nearby Bath in 1856.
Frederick W. Chesson (144 Fiske St., Waterbury, CT 06710) in his article titled "Secret Wires: Confederate Open and Secret Wires) revised August 31, 2000 and published on his web page ( ):
     By early 1861, with North-South hostilities looming, the
communications resources of both sides stood in sharp contrast,
as did the disparity in men, arms and industrial facilities.
Most wire mills and insulator kilns were in the North, and only
the Southern Porcelain Company of Kaolin, South Carolina was
available for the manufacture of ceramic insulators on any scale.
It produced a curious "teapot" insulator, having an offset, spout-
like appendage, useful for the rapid re-stringing of downed wires.
Elsewhere, Chesson notes that sometime before mid-November 1894:
...the Southern Porcelain Company had been destroyed by fire, ending the production of ceramic
insulators for line repairs. ( )
This information was found at the website of  The Council of South Carolina Professional
This was part of Coscapa Newsletter XXII No. 1
Industrial Pottery in the Old Edgefield District by Carl Steen
Note: this will be published in a slightly different form in the upcoming publication “Ceramics in America” by the Chipstone
Foundation, Williamsburg, Va.
There are two known industrial pottery operations. The first, the Southern Porcelain Company, was near Bath, S.C. SouthernPorcelain was first noted in the literature by Edward Atlee Barber (1904/1976 edition) who illustrated the company’s “S.P.Company Kaolin S.C.” mark. Ceramic historian Garrison Stradling produced a detailed study in 1996. I will briefly summarizehis results, referring the reader to the original for details on this operation.

Southern Porcelain Company was established in 1856 by potters and businessmen associated with the U.S. Pottery Companyin Bennington Vermont. They brought northern workmen, and managers. Notable potters include Josiah Jones, Christopher Webber Fenton, and skilled modeler Daniel Greatbatch. They made a variety of wares, including plain white and cream colored earthenware, high fired ironstone and porcelaineous stoneware tablewares, true porcelain, and Bennington/Rockingham type wares. In addition they made alkaline glazed stoneware, porcelain insulators and fire brick. The factory continued in operation until 1864, when a fire reduced it to rubble. Examples of the marks used and wares produced at Southern Porcelain are shown in Figure 1, and 2. Recently a local collector has made a collection of sherds from the site available for study. These are under analysis at this writing.