What is Edgefield Pottery?
Edgefield pottery is pottery made in the old Edgefield district of South Carolina from about 1820 to the early twentieth century.
What is so special about Edgefield pottery?
Owning a piece of Edgefield is like holding a small piece of history in your hands. Much of the Edgefield pottery was made before the Civil War in plantation run potteries.
What is the difference between Edgefield pottery and other pottery?
Edgefield pottery was alkaline glazed, unlike pottery from outside the South. Abner Landrum began the first Edgefield pottery around 1820 and experimented with using alkaline glazes like the Chinese had used 1000 years earlier. He did this because lead glazes were poisonous and salt glazing was too expensive. Because of his success other potteries in the Edgefield District sprang up. As potters moved west they took alkaline glazing with them outside of Edgefield to parts of upstate South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and as far west as Texas.
Why do people collect Edgefield?
People collect most anything. Collecting Edgefield is part love of craft, love of art, and love of history. Making pottery was artisanship and craftsmanship rolled up together. On top of the basic knowledge required to make pottery out of what simply lay in the land was the potter’s personal touches. This included experimenting with different forms, decorations, and glazes. There is also history in that each piece has its own story. Who made it? When was it made? For what was it used? Why did they do it this way while everyone else did it another way? Most times we can only guess at the story. That is what is fun about collecting, figuring this stuff out. There are no hard and fast facts. No tell-all books with values listed. EVERY piece is one of a kind. Every piece has a bit of mystery attached. As you learn through collecting you begin to pick out the rare from the common. You enjoy your rare finds more and more.