Utilitarian Stoneware Texas Pottery Stoneware
Very Rare Two-Gallon Stoneware Jar, Stamped "N" Made by Milligan Frazier, Marion County, Texas origin, circa 1865, cylindrical jar with tooled shoulder and thin, semi-rounded rim, the surface covered in a golden alkaline glaze with overlying dark-brown streaks and mottling, Impressed below the rim with the maker's mark of "N". Incised is also a large numeral 2. An Edgefield, South Carolina-trained potter, who established a shop in Marion County, Texas during the mid 19th century. Pieces such as this jar, which bear a distinctive alkaline glaze, have been attributed to Milligan Frazier, an African-American potter involved for a period at Nash's operation. A Texas newspaper article run in the February 17, 1974 edition of The Longview Morning Journal, discusses Frazier and his pottery, including the distinctive glazes he produced, which were sometimes accented with clear glass runs. Amazingly, this information was provided by Nash's elderly son, leaving little doubt to its veracity. According to this article, Frazier was eventually producing ware independently at his homestead near the Nash site, known as "Milligan's Jug Works". Glass used to produce the glazes was acquired from local townspeople in the form of "old bottles, snuff jars, and blue glass bottles". The glazing process is described as follows: "First he would grind the glass into a fine powder, then mix it with powdered sand rock and water until it was like paint, then roll the pottery piece in the mixture. This finished, he would sprinkle finely ground white glass over the rim and drop, thus resulting in a variance of color after the pieces were baked. Browns of varying shades, streaked with black, seemed to be the dominant colors for his works". A fine example of Texas stoneware with a link to the Edgefield potting tradition. Very few signed examples of stoneware produced at the Nash Pottery have come to auction in the past several years. Provenance: A fresh-to-the-market example, recently found in East Texas.