This wheel-thrown, lead-glazed, red earthenware dish is attributed to potter Jacob Weaver (1774-1846) from Lincoln County, North Carolina. A distinction between the slip-trailed decorations made by Jacob Weaver and that of the Moravians in North Carolina, is Weaver’s use of the wide, white slip band on the rim through which a zig-zag line was drawn, as in sgraffito decoration. Along with this decoration on the rim, white and green slip concentric trailing decorates the interior wall of the dish (leading to but not including the center). Beneath the lead glaze, the surface of the clay appears a rich reddish-orange, and the white slip appears cream or yellow. A lead glaze was made up primarily of a lead oxide, most often red lead, that was ground, mixed with a clay so that the mixture would adhere to the pottery, and made liquid with water. Earthenware is a porous material and must have an applied glaze in order to hold liquids.
The underside of the was dish is incised with a large cursive “J” prior to firing.
MAKER: According to Terry Zug, the potters of the Catawba Valley over time have been “almost exclusively German, with names like Dietz, Hartzog, Hefner, Helton, Leonard, Propst, Reinhardt, Rudisill, Seagle, Shufford, Speagle, and Weaver at the heart of the tradition.” Jacob Weaver (1774-1846) was one of the earliest potters working in the Catawba Valley of North Carolina.
Zug, Charles G. Turners and Burners: The Folk Potters of North Carolina. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1986.