David Parr (1819-1882) and Thomas Keesee (1809-1872)
In 1858, David Parr partnered with auctioneer Thomas W. Keesee to form Keesee & Parr. The partnership sold specially marked stoneware and was promoted in newspaper and handbill advertisements until the burning of Richmond at the end of the Civil War. David continued after the War under the name Parr & Sons, which remained in business until 1890.
David’s uncle Elisha Parr was a prolific Baltimore Quaker potter. In 1851, David moved from Baltimore to establish his own stoneware pottery in Richmond. With Thomas Keesee David and his family made and shipped stoneware to the mountains of Western Virginia, Tennessee and the North Carolina Piedmont. The Parr home in Richmond adjoined a large shop and work-yard containing two kilns, a pug mill, and other structures and equipment. In 2009, over one thousand sherds were collected from this site by the William & Mary Center for Archaeological Research.