Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 40.djvu/162

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150
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

earth. He had several samples of the china-ware of their making with him, which were, I think, equal to the Asiatic. 'Twas found in the back of Virginia, where he was in quest of mines ; and having read Du Halde, discovered both the petunse and kaulin. 'Tis the latter earth, he says, is the essential thing towards the success of the manufacture. He is gone for a cargo of it, having bought the whole country of the Indians where it rises. They can import it for £13 per ton, and by that means afford their china as cheap as common stoneware. But they intend only to go about 30 per cent under the company."

We must not conclude from this statement that the ware which Cookworthy had seen had been made in America. It is much more probable that the pieces were some of those produced at the Bow works, within the year that had just passed, from the re- cently discovered American materials.

Not until 1769 was there any serious attempt made to manu- facture fine porcelain on this side of the water. In Watson's Annals of Philadelphia we find the brief statement that "the desire to encourage domestic fabrics gave rise, in 1771, to the erection of a flint-glass manufactory near Lancaster, by which they hoped to save £30,000 to the province. A china factory, too, was also erected on Prime Street, near the present Navy Yard, intended to make china at a saving of £15,000." In a foot-note the author adds : " This long row of wooden houses afterwards became famous as a sailors' brothel and riot-house on a large scale. The former frail ware proved an abortive scheme." Mr. Charles Henry Hart, of Philadelphia, made the interesting dis- covery, a few years ago, of some old advertisements in the news- papers of that time which threw considerable light on this early American enterprise, and he has kindly placed at my disposal the results of his investigations. The first of these announcements, which appeared in the latter part of the year 1769, is as follows :

New China-ware. — Notwithstanding the various diflBculties and disadvan- tages, which usually attend the introduction of any important manufacture into a new country, the Proprietors of the China "Works, now erecting in Southwark, have the pleasure to acquaint the puhlic, they have proved to a certainty, that the clays of America are productive of as good Porcelain, as any heretofore manu- factured at the famous factory in Bow, near London, and imported into the colo- nies and plantations, which they will engage to sell upon very reasonable terms; and as they purpose going largely into this manufacture as soon as the works are completed, they request those persons who choose to favor them with commands, to be as early as possible, laying it down as a fixed principle, to take all orders in rotation, and execute the earliest first ; dealers will meet with the usual encour- agement, and may be assured, that no goods under Thirty Pounds' worth, will be sold to private persons out of the factory, at a lower advance than from their shops. All workmen skilled in the different branches of throwing, turning, mod- elling, moulding, pressing, and painting, upon application to the Proprietors, may