IN AND AROUND 1890, WILLIAM AND CHARLES WINGENDER, GERMAN IMMAGRANTS, REBUILT A STONEWARE POTTERY IN HADDONFIELD, NEW JERSEY, FORMERLY OCCUPIED BY RICHARD SNOWDEN AND BEFORE THAT JOHN THOMPSON. SNOWDEN HAD MADE STONEWARE THERE SINCE 1869 AND THOMPSON BEFORE THAT HAD MANUFACTURED REDWARE. THE POTTERY HAD RECORDS DATING IT BACK TO 1805.
THE BROTHERS WINGENDER MANUFACTURED CROCKS, WATER COOLERS, MUGS, STEINS AND ALL OTHER BLUE DECORATED STONEWARE ITEMS NECESSARY FOR THE HOME AT THAT TIME. THEY BROUGHT WITH THEM THE TRAINING RECIEVED IN THEIR HOME COUNTRY ON THE MAKING OF BEAUTIFUL STONEWARE WITH BLUE GLAZE.
IN 1904 THE BROTHERS BUILT A NEW POTTERY ON LAKE ST. IN HADDENFIELD, TODAY A SECTION OF CAMDEN, N.J.. THIS FACILITY HOUSED THE POTTERY ITSELF AND ALSO QUARTERS FOR BOTH FAMILIES. THIS NEW JERSEY STONEWARE POTTERY BUILDING STILL STANDS TODAY.
THERE WAS A THIRD BROTHER, JACOB, WHO RELOCATED TO ALABAMA AND MADE STONEWARE THERE FOR SOME YEARS. WE HAVE NEVER SEEN AN ALABAMA WINGENDER ANTIQUE STONEWARE EXAMPLE, BUT WE SURE WOULD LIKE THAT OPPORTUNITY!
TAB DOWN FOR SOME PICTURES OF ACTUAL WINGENDER STONEWARE MANUFACTURED IN THE 1800'S!
The Wingenders were most talented artisans and that was quite evident when we discovered this NORTH WIND WATER COOLER made in the 1800's.
Water coolers were used in daily life to keep a supply of cool fresh water on hand. This one once had a tap which fit into the NORTHWIND FACE there at the base on the front. It also came with a nicely styled lid which was dome shaped and also glazed in the same dark blue glaze.
The sides and back face of this cooler were full of stylized Germanic design work. Just extraordinary and incredibly well done sculptural work here. The coolers came in several sizes this one being a three gallon capacity.
There are many reference books out there that cover the family as part of New Jersey's stoneware history in the 1800's. The area surrounding Trenton, Camden and Philadelphia was central to American growth and manufacturing in the late 1800's and into the Industrial Revolution.
One which we read which had quite a nice section on New Jersey Stoneware was
AMERICAN STONEWARE by William Ketchum.
We found this crock outside Philadelphia in the cellar of a collectors home. The owner told us that it had been in his cellar since before he could remember. He was in his late 80's and the home belonged to his family since 1871. It was the first …..and only....Wingender crock we have ever seen of this size. The crock measured out at 19" tall and weighed 26 pounds! Crocks like this were used mostly for fermentation.
Notice the distinctive design on the face. This is a classic Wingender blue cobalt design. The brothers used this design on many of their stoneware articles as a rule. If you research this design you will see it on many German made examples from the 1800's.
The brothers likely purchased their clay from a supply mined near Perth Amboy, New Jersey which supplied nearly all the stoneware clay in the United States. Cobalt glaze was for the most part purchased from suppliers in England and was quite expensive.
This small pint size pitcher was in a box lot at a country auction. We saw it and thought at first it was nothing special because the color threw us off. In this case, the usual grey toned stoneware and the rich blue cobalt glaze, we usually see on Windgender stoneware, was replaced by this golden toned exterior and almost black cobalt design work.
When stoneware is fired in the kiln, the temperature fluctuations, oxygen levels and organic nature of the glazes can change coloration. This was evident here with this small pitcher which came out a unique and beautiful color.
It's unmistakably Wingender, with the form, the design work and size all very much like ones we have seen in our travels, but yet very different from any other we ever had seen.