Pottery Shops in Rock Mills
After the Civil War, the establishment of the textile industry led to the growth of Rock Mills and subsequent potteries became established in town. By 1900, potteries here produced utilitarian wares covered in the traditional southern ash glaze but also some utilizing the salt glaze, favored by northern potters, and the brown Albany Slip glaze which could now be shipped in by railcar.
For much of the early twentieth century. William "Will" Davis Pound owned and operated the biggest pottery business in Randolph County at this location from the 1890s into the years of the Great Depression. This pottery site features a mound of broken pottery and ruins of a kiln and, to the right, a shop building that was built around World War I. Pound was a landowner, landlord and store owner, and, by 1903, Pound's was the primary pottery shop in Rock Mills.
The Potters of Rock Mills
Pittman Brothers Pottery operated near this site in the 1890s. Martin R. Pittman was the superintendent and his brothers David and Wesley were potters. James Lane, a northerner named Dennis Perkins and formerly enslaved potter Edward Rushton also worked for Pittman Brothers at this time.
At this site, Will Pound employed his sons Wilner
and Denson and other potters such as Jim, Earl and Will Boggs, Ralph Phillips, W. J. Shepard, Watts Gladney, Wesley Pittman, Charley Brown, and Jesse Weathers.
Jesse Weathers was perhaps the most accomplished potter who worked at this site. The half-brother of shop owner W. D. Pound, Weathers was a part-time potter who also worked in the textile mill from time to time. Some of his pottery creations included fancy shaving mugs and jugs encircled by snakes. Examples of Weather's work are in the collections of the Birmingham Museum of Art and the High Museum in Atlanta.