Columbian Art Pottery


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In operation



china and earthenware (Industrial Directory 1901); china and Belleek ware (Industrial Directory 1906); thin Belleek china and ivory ware; table and toilet china and artwares in a Belleek body (Lehner 1980:44)


The Columbian Art Pottery was established in 1892 and manufactured “Fine Ceramic Art Productions: Expert decorators of Steins, Tankards, Loving-Cups, Jardinieres, Umbrella Handles, Souvenirs, Vases and Specialties for Metal Workers” (Board of Trade 1900:72).

“Perhpasd their most famous item is the Belleek Liberty Bell É Other items include a nice assortment of transfer-decorated mugs and tankards which are touched up by hand and which have hand-painted shaded backgrounds” (Robinson and Feeny 1980:57).

“William Morris had been trained at the Belleek Works in Ireland as well as in the Royal Worcester Porcelain Works in England. He also held the position of foreman with Ott & Brewer. Willmore had been associated with Royal Worcester and Ott & Brewer as a decorator. The two joined together as partners in 1892 and their company produced an outstanding line of fine Belleek. While few examples of their work are displayed publicly, the New Jersey State Museum is the owner of a cobalt blue tea set considered by many to be one of the finest examples of American porcelain. Morris & Willmore also produced Belleek tankards and mugs and vases which combine thinness of fine porcelain with the decorative skills equal to the best produced during this period.

The artistic brilliance of this company was not matched by its commercial acumen and the company operated for less than fifteen years. Their plant was located in a small building on Parker Avenue near Olden Avenue. In 1905, a forced sale of the property apparently led to the end of the partnership although the partners did retain control of the property. Morris continued in pottery production at this location for perhaps another ten years under the name of Morris China Co.” (Goldberg 1998:52-53).

Selected References

Fitzgerald, Thomas F. 1893-1900. “Fitzgerald’s Trenton and Mercer County Directory, Together with a Directory of Bordentown, Burlington, Mount Holly and Lambertville, NJ and Morrisville, PA, Included a Fund of Information Concerning Public and Private Institutions, National, State, County, City and Borough Governments, Gathered from Reliable and Official Sources.” Thomas F. Fitzgerald, Trenton, New Jersey.

Jervis, William P. 1897. “A Book of Pottery Marks.” Press of Hayes Bros., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Trenton Board of Trade. 1900. “Industrial Trenton and Vicinity.” George A. Wolf Publishers, Wilmington, Delaware.

Fitzgerald, Thomas F. 1901-1906. “Fitzgerald’s Trenton and Mercer County Directory, Together with a Directory of Bordentown, Burlington, Mount Holly and Lambertville, NJ.” Thomas F. Fitzgerald, Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Industrial Statistics. 1901. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Industrial Statistics. 1906. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

Newark Museum Association. 1914. “The Work of The Potteries of New Jersey: From 1685 to 1876 , Being Extracts from ‘The Pottery and Porcelain of the United States,’ by Edwin Atlee Barber and Marks of New Jersey Potteries, as Reproduced from ‘Pottery,’ Published by The Thomas Maddock’s Sons Company.” Newark Museum Association, Newark, New Jersey.

Harney, W.J. 1929. “Trenton’s First Potteries.” Sunday Times Advertiser, July 7, 14, 21 and 28, 1929.

Thorn, C. Jordan. 1947. “Handbook of Old Pottery & Porcelain Marks.” Tudor Publishing Company, New York, New York.

“Columbian Art Pottery established in 1893.” 1967. Spinning Wheel, April 1967, p. 12.

Lehner, Lois. 1980. “Complete Book of American Kitchen and Dinner Wares.” Wallace-Homestead Book Company, Des Moines, Iowa.

Robinson, Dorothy and Bill Feeny. 1980. “The Official Price Guide to American Pottery & Porcelain.” House of Collectibles, Orlando, Florida.

Gaston, Mary Frank. 1984. “American Belleek.” Collector Books, Paducah, Kentucky.

Lehner, Lois. 1988. “Lehner’s Encyclopedia of U.S. Marks on Pottery, Porcelain & Clay.” Collector Books, Paducah, Kentucky.

Frelinghuysen, Alice Cooney. 1989. “American Porcelain, 1770-1920.” Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York.

Goldberg, David J. 1998. “Preliminary Notes on the Pioneer Potters and Potteries of Trenton, N.J.: The First Thirty Years – 1852 – 1882 (And Beyond).” Privately published, Trenton, New Jersey.

Other Names

Columbian Art Pottery Company; Morris & Willmore Company

Block and Lot:

Historic Street Address:
Parker Avenue above Olden Avenue

City of Trenton