MAKER: Irish immigrants John (1824-1878) and Thomas Ducey (1822-1867), brothers, purchased the Petersburg, Virginia, pottery manufactory of Henry Lowndes in 1855. It was located at Watson and Wythe Streets. An 1872 article identifies the clay source used at the Ducey pottery, a rare insight into an early pottery manufactory. The article states, “The clay used by these gentleman is all obtained from the James River. There being none in this vicinity at all adapted to the purpose. It is of a far finer and smoother grain than any around Petersburg, and when mixed and ground and kneaded into balls presents a soft smooth surface ready for the plastic hand that is to fashion it into shape.”
Russ, Kurt, Robert Hunter, Oliver Mueller-Heubach, and Marshall Goodman. “The Remakable 19th-Century Stoneware of Virginia’s Lower James River Valley.” CERAMICS IN AMERICA (2013) 200-258.