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John Landrum Factory
Place Made:
Edgefield County South Carolina United States of America
Date Made:
Alkaline-glazed stoneware
HOA: 14 3/4″; WOA: 11″
Accession Number:
With a high shoulder and bulbous upper half tapering to a narrow foot, this light gray-green alkaline-glazed stoneware jug was likely made at the factory of John Landrum near Edgefield, South Carolina. At the base of the jug are two slashes that indicate its capacity, approximately 2 gallons. It has a thin, flattened, pulled handle and a double rim above the neck of the vessel. Indicating an early date of production at Landrum’s factory, the dark color on the shoulder is reminiscent of iron washes applied to the upper bodies of salt-glazed stoneware throughout the 18th and early 19th centuries.

Alkaline glaze is a mix of clay and ash or lime that acts as a flux. Cinda K. Baldwin, in her book “Great and Noble Jar,” notes that the earliest glazes found in the Edgefield area were a light yellow-green or gray-green, as seen on this jar, whereas darker green colors tend to be found on later wares.

John Landrum’s factory was the earliest in a long line of potteries established in the area of Shaw’s Creek, south of the town of Edgefield. He was one of three brothers–John, Abner, and Amos–who were pivotal in the early production of stoneware in South Carolina, but perhaps more importantly, in the development of the alkaline-glaze tradition in America. By the second quarter of the nineteenth-century, the brothers’ pottery factories were operated largely by slave labor.

Baldwin, Cinda K. “Great and Noble Jar.” Athens, GA: UGA Press, 1993.

Credit Line:
The William C. and Susan S. Mariner Collection