I didn't realize it had been so long since I had posted to my blog. I came across some interesting history of the Homer Laughlin China Company and wanted to share:
In 1872 the East Liverpool, Ohio City Council, foreseeing the demise in popularity of yellow ware offered $5,000 to anyone that would agree to build a four kiln pottery producing white ware.
Homer and Shakespeare Laughlin won that competition and proceeded to build a pottery in East Liverpool. They were natives of the area being born on Beaver Creek near East Liverpool and the Ohio River. After the Civil War Homer and his brothers had worked in the pottery industry in production and sales but were not expert in technical aspects of making ware.
They accepted the Council's offer on September 1, 1873, broke ground for the plant on October 1 and opened for production one year later on September 1, 1874. The plant with only two kilns struggled due to a lack of capital and lack of experience. White ware had not been produced in the area before this time. It is said that the first batch of ware out of the kilns was cups and that when the ware cooled all the handles fell off. Undaunted they persevered, calling themselves, "The Ohio Valley Pottery" and "Laughlin Bros. Pottery". By 1874 they had 100 employees. Their work finally paid off when in 1876 they were awarded a medal for best white ware at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They were now established as a quality producer in the market.
May your dishes bring a smile to your face!