Posts Tagged ‘NC Department of Cultural Resources’

North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Receives Grant from NC Arts council

Sunday, August 7th, 2011


The North Carolina Pottery Center in Randolph County has been awarded $20,412 from the North Carolina Arts Council for State Arts Resources, and $8,000 for the Traditional Arts Program in the Schools held each year in the Center’s educational building for fifth grade students from the Seagrove Elementary School in Seagrove, NC.

Board president, Linda Carnes-McNaughton said “State funds allow Randolph County to provide quality arts programming for students and adults, while also sustaining our local economy.”


Last year, the North Carolina Pottery Center provided programming for more than 11,000 visitors, including students. Highlights of our programming is the Traditional Arts Program In Schools held each year at the Center’s education building in partnership with the Seagrove Elementary School. The two ten-week workshops are conducted by local fifth-generation potter Sid Luck. Educational programs are also provided by the Center at the Catawba Valley Pottery Festival held in Hickory, NC, each March by well-known pottery historian, Dr. Charles “Terry” Zug of Chapel Hill, NC, and at the local Seagrove Celebration of Seagrove Potters held each November which provides exhibits and educational information to pottery attendees.

“The support of our grants program by the General assembly during these economically challenging times demonstrates the role the arts play in our economy and our quality of life,” said Mary B. Regan, executive director of the NC Arts Council. “Nonprofit arts organizations employ workers, stimulate commerce, generate tax revenues and help communities retain their vibrancy.”

More than 8.7 million people participated in NC Arts Council-funded projects last year in schools, senior centers, museums, concert halls and community centers. Nearly 2.9 million of these were children and youth.

The NC Arts Council awards grant money each year to provide diverse arts experiences for citizens to all 100 counties of NC. In fiscal year 2011-2012, the Arts Council is expected to distribute $6.4 million in state and federal grant funds to arts organizations, schools and other nonprofit organizations that sponsor arts programs.


The NC Arts Council is a division of the NC Department of Cultural Resources, the state agency with the mission to enrich lives and communities and the vision to harness the state’s cultural resources to build North Carolina’s social, cultural and economic future. Information on Cultural Resources is available at (

The North Carolina Pottery Center offers educational opportunities to statewide schools and individuals, changing historical and contemporary exhibitions, demonstrations, and information about statewide potters. The NCPC is a private nonprofit entity, funded primarily through memberships, grants, admissions, and appropriations.

The Center is open, Tuesdays – Saturdays 10am to 4pm, admission (excluding free special events): $2 – adults, $1 – students 9th through 12th grades, free – children through 8th grade, and free – NCPC members.  Handicap accessible. Groups and tours welcomed.

For further information and details call 336/873-8430, e-mail to ( or visit (

NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Educates Area Teachers About NC Pottery History

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011



For three days in late June, 2011, a group of 25 local teachers took a break from their summer vacation to participate in a special workshop hosted by the North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, North Carolina, and funded by an educational grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Goodnight Educational Fund. The purpose of this special workshop was to introduce these teachers to the history of pottery making in North Carolina, from the earliest American Indian potters to contemporary potters of today, highlighting old traditions and new traditions. The teachers were selected by random, five from each of the surrounding counties of Chatham, Lee, Moore, Montgomery and Randolph. Each teacher received a packet of publications, posters, and educational materials to share with their students next fall.

Teachers get an orientation at the NCPC on the first day of the workshop from Dr. Linda Carnes-McNaughton

Day one of the workshop featured guest lectures by Dr. Charles Zug, noted folklorist and North Carolina pottery expert who provided a history of pottery making overview, Dr. Linda Carnes-McNaughton, archaeologist and ceramic scholar who taught them how to identify different ceramics and glazes, plus demonstrations by Caroleen Sanders, Catawba Indian potter who spoke about her heritage and training, and finally Chris Espenshade, an archaeologist who demonstrated hand-building techniques for the teacher’s hands-on experience.

Catawba potter, Caroleen Sanders gives teachers an overview of  her pottery tradition.

Teachers in the NCPC Education Building learning how to make coiled pottery from Chris Espenshade.

The second and third days involved field trips to various regional pottery shops to showcase different pottery styles, kilns, glazes, and vessels. The group visited Westmoore Pottery (Mary Farrell) to learn about North Carolina’s early redware industry and use of a chamber kiln. They then moved on to Jugtown Pottery to learn about groundhog kilns, salt-glazed stonewares and the “revitalization” of the craft which took place in the 1920s from generational potters, Vernon and Pam Owens. The afternoon was filled with a visit to Ben Owen Pottery to see new art forms and changes in this family’s wares over the past three generations, plus two functioning groundhog kilns. Last on the second day was a trip to the King’s Pottery to meet Terry, Anna and Crystal King, a family of local potters known for their whimsical face jugs and sculptural figurines of animals.

Mary Farrrell of Westmoore Pottery greets the teachers in front of her shop before showing them her decorative techniques.

The third day the teachers’ group traveled to Pittsboro, NC, to meet potter Mark Hewitt and learn more about the apprenticeship system of craft-transfer, along with his own version of traditional pottery, use of a catenary arch kiln and other decorative elements revised from North Carolina’s 19th century traditions. The group concluded the field trip day with a visit to Seagrove pottery family, the McCanlesses, where Millie (Dover Pottery), Eck (Eck McCanless Pottery) and Zeke demonstrated elaborate decorative techniques on porcelain-type ceramics.

Pittsboro, NC, potter, Mark Hewitt talks about his craft and appreciation of North Carolina pottery.

At the end of the workshop, the teachers received their diplomas and stood patiently for a final group photograph.  Overall comments from teachers were very rewarding and positive, “this is the best workshop I’ve attended in my 17 years of teaching”, “loved the literature and the presentations”, “learning firsthand history from NC potters”, “now I have more knowledge to spread with kids and families in the area”,  and “NCPC + Hospitality = Wonderful!”

Group of 25 Teachers from Chatham, Lee, Moore, Montgomery, and Randolph Counties who participated in the NCPC’s 3-day Teachers Workshop on Pottery making in North Carolina.

The workshop organizers, Dr. Linda Carnes-McNaughton, Mrs. Cindy Edwards, and Mrs. Ann Busick, along with the NCPC staff, hope to do another teachers workshop in the future, offering access to potters, history overview and hands-on demonstrations to teachers from throughout the state an opportunity to transmit this learning to their students….helping to preserve and promote the significance of pottery in North Carolina’s heritage.

Upcoming Fundraiser for the NC Pottery Center

The North Carolina Pottery Center, in Seagrove, partnering with Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales, Ltd (LLAES), is pleased to announce, the12th annual Going, Going, Gone to Pots fundraising auction on Aug. 11, 2011. This auction, the Center’s main fund raising event of the year, will feature an outstanding selection of contemporary and vintage North Carolina pottery donated by top NC potters and collectors, as well as other exciting participatory and pottery related items. The lots are available for viewing now at ( and (

NC Pottery Center’s Upcoming Exhibitions

The North Carolina Pottery Center will present two new exhibits including:Wild Fire: Alamance County Stoneware – Past and Present and Remember Me as You Pass By… North Carolina Ceramic Grave Markers, both on view from Aug. 19 through Oct. 29, 2011. A reception will be held on Aug. 19, from 5:30-7:30pm.

Exhibitions are made possible through the generosity of our membership, the Mary and Elliott Wood Foundation and the Goodnight Educational Foundation. This project was supported by the NC Arts Council, a division of the NC Department of Cultural Resources, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The mission of the North Carolina Pottery Center is to promote public awareness of and appreciation for the history, heritage, and ongoing tradition of pottery making in North Carolina. The Center is located at 233 East Avenue in Seagrove. Hours of operation are Tue. – Sat., 10am – 4pm.

For more information, please call 336/873-8430 or visit (

After the Cow Pie – Straight Talk About Seagrove Pottery Festivals

Saturday, November 14th, 2009

Well, it didn’t take long after my recent posting about the upcoming Celebration of Seagrove Potters festival which will take place Nov. 20 – 22, 2009, in Seagrove, NC, when I started to get e-mails from a couple of my regular non-fans about the big mistake I had made – counting potters as potteries.

In my irrational exuberance (thank you Allen Greenspan) to be a good media sponsor for the Celebration of Seagrove Potters and in trying to be too cute in making a comparison between the two festivals offered in Seagrove on the same weekend, I made the mistake of using the word “potteries” where I should have used the word “potters”. It’s a big difference.

When I made the statement – “I know there are about 100 potteries in the greater Seagrove area and 85 of them will be at the Celebration of Seagrove Potters.” I was wrong. The number 85 represents individual potters not potteries. There will be almost 60 potteries represented at the Celebration of Seagrove Potters – leaving about 40 from the Seagrove area that could be at the other festival – still less than the Celebration and almost just as many (up to 35) from somewhere else other than Seagrove attending the other festival.

So it was pointed out to me that I was full of what you can find inside a cow pie and that I was, again, being unfair to the other festival.

Well, I pointed out to my non-fans that I did mention the other festival, made a link to their website and suggested to readers that if they didn’t find what they needed at the Celebration of Seagrove Potters – they should go to the other festival – it will be right there in Seagrove. That’s more fair and balanced than FOX News. It would be kind of hard to miss the other festival in such a small community, but, that’s what you get when trying to be a good supporter to one festival and fair to the other.

I have always said to these folks who are not happy with my support of the NC Pottery Center and Seagrove potters that what I’m trying to do is get people to go to Seagrove. What they do when they get there and which potteries they go to – much less what festivals they go to – I don’t really care. It’s a free country and I think visitors will just see potteries in Seagrove and won’t be checking any guides telling which potteries are on what side of the pottery feud going on in Seagrove. (And, for the record – there is no real feud going on in Seagrove.) So every time I’m promoting Seagrove potters – I’m doing work for all Seagrove potters – except for a few.

What really has had a burr up my rear is the real problem in Seagrove and that’s the actions of a few of the organizers of the other festival – the Seagrove Pottery Festival. Don Hudson, a potter from Sanford, NC, and his side kick, Phil Morgan, a potter from Seagrove have been running their own “Tea Party” in NC – attacking potteries and potters who do not line up under their leadership, attacking the NC Pottery Center and even attacking the NC Department of Cultural Resources – for their support of the Pottery Center and Seagrove in general.

I have nothing against the other potteries and potters who participate in the Seagrove Pottery Festival – they’re just trying to make a living like the rest of us, but I cannot support a festival under the control of Hudson and Morgan – a two man wrecking crew.

So I stepped in a cow pie by making my mistake, but my grandparents ran a dairy farm back in Michigan and I’ve stepped in many a cow pie and even learned that they can be useful as a sort of frisby – good for tossing at your older brother. So I’m tossing the cow pie I stepped in back at Don Hudson and Phil Morgan and asking – What’s the deal – have you two always been jerks?

I have an idea as to what Hudson is up to. He’d like to see the reputation of Seagrove pottery dragged through the mud in favor of Sanford, NC – which presents its own pottery festival. What Morgan is up to – I’m not sure he knows, but he must like being a yes man to Hudson.

I’m going to make the corrections to my recent posting – still showing my mistakes. I’m a big boy and I can live with my mistakes, but I’ll correct them when I’m shown I was wrong – but I don’t know how Hudson and Morgan live with what damage they have caused in the last two years.

If they are ever successful in bringing down the NC Pottery Center I will do my best to make sure the art community and community in general – forever knows what these two guys did. But, I don’t think they will be successful in their quest and until that day comes – if it ever does – I’ll not mention them again or anything they are associated with. It’s what they deserve.

So in closing – make sure you go to the Celebration of Seagrove Potters in Seagrove, NC, held from Nov. 20 – 22, 2009. You’ll see lots of potters from Seagrove there – 85 of them.