Star Porcelain Company

  

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In operation

1902-present

Wares

electrical specialties in porcelain (Trenton Board of Trade 1900); electrical porcelain specialties (sockets, insulators), porcelain goods (Industrial Directory 1906); electrical porcelain specialties (Industrial Directory 1909, 1912); electrical porcelain (Industrial Directory 1918, 1927); electric porcelain specialties (Industrial Directory 1931, 1934); electric porcelain (Industrial Directory1938); molded ceramic materials, electrical porcelain (Industrial Directory 1940-41)

Notes

The Star Porcelain Company was established in 1899 and moved to this site prior to 1905. It experienced rapid growth in its first twenty years and limited production to electrical porcelain specialties (sockets, insulators, etc.). The company still made similar products in the late 1970s. The firm usually used the dry pressed process, but between 1901 and 1907 they made some high voltage insulators by the wet process. The principal buildings and some old equipment still survive (Abramson and Karschner 1978:14).

“The Star Porcelain Company, located on Muirhead Avenue, was founded in 1899 by Herbert Sinclair, Dr. Charles Britton (a drugstore owner) and Dr. Thomas H. MacKenzie (a doctor). The company manufactures electrical specialties as it has done since its founding. In 1919, Star built a plant in Frenchtown, NJ, for the manufacture of spark plug insulators. The Frenchtown Porcelain Company was later sold when the automotive industry began manufacturing their own spark plugs. Star acquired the Bay Ridge Company in 1969″ (Robinson and Feeny 1980:344).

” É The Star Porcelain Company specialized in manufacturing electrical porcelain, specialized parts used in a multitude of electrical items, from transformers to spark plugs; railroad switches to electric outlets. Star manufactured parts to order and designed pieces to client specifications.

Early in 2006 the building was purchased and rehabilitated for a tenant É ” Photographs are included from a March 2006 site visit (Madrigal 2006).

The Washington Porcelain Company is listed in city directories for 1919-1926 as being on Muirhead Avenue near Dewey and possibly occupied part of the Star Porcelain site (perhaps as offices).

The Fitzgerald 1935-1936, 1938 and Huston 1946 city directories list Frenchtown Porcelain as also being located at 75 Muirhead Avenue. This firm operated a plant in Frenchtown and maintained offices at the Star Porcelain site.

Selected References

Fitzgerald, Thomas F. 1902-1938. “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. 1906. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Industrial Statistics. 1909. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Industrial Statistics. 1912. “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.

Secretary of State. 1914. “Corporations of New Jersey, List of Certificates to December 31, 1911.” MacCrellish & Quigley, Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Industrial Statistics. 1918. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Statistics and Records, Department of Labor. 1927. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

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

Trenton Chamber of Commerce. 1929. “Trenton: 250th Anniversary of the Settlement of Trenton.” On file, Trenton Public Library, Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Statistics and Records, State Department of Labor. 1931. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Statistics and Records, State Department of Labor. 1934. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

New Jersey Bureau of Statistics and Records, State Department of Labor. 1940-41. “The Industrial Directory of New Jersey.” Trenton, New Jersey.

Huston, Charles W. 1946. “Trenton, New Jersey City Directory.” Charles W. Huston, Trenton, New Jersey.

Abramson, D.V. and T. Karschner. 1978. “An Inventory of Historical Engineering and Industrial Sites, Trenton, New Jersey.” On file, New Jersey Historic Preservation Office (NJDEP), Trenton, New Jersey.

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

Madrigal, Patricia. 2006. “The Star Porcelain Company.” Trenton Potteries 7 (2):1-5.

City of Trenton Tax Assessor Records. On file, Trenton Public Library, Trenton, New Jersey.

Other Names

Star Porcelain Company; Washington Porcelain Company; Frenchtown Porcelain

Block and Lot:
39-1B/1

Historic Street Address:
North Clinton Avenue near Mead; Muirhead Avenue corner; 75 Muirhead Avenue near Dewey Street; Muirhead Avenue near Dewey

Municipality:
City of Trenton