Since its early beginnings, Stoneware & Co. has been dedicated to transforming clay into enduring, functional stoneware pottery art forms. In its factory in Louisville, Kentucky, skilled artisans create beautiful dinnerware, bakeware, flowerpots and serving pieces that can be enjoyed and cherished for generations. Some designs are subtle, others are more striking and exuberant, but what they all have in common is an underlying belief that humble, everyday objects have an important place in our lives and homes.
Jacob Lewis established what would become Stoneware & Co. in 1815; in his small factory, he crafted large 30-gallon stoneware crocks that travelers would fill with grain, along with everyday necessities such as butter churns, bowls and plates. This type of salt-glazed stoneware pottery originated in Germany, but became the dominant houseware of the United States in the mid-18th century and was being produced in almost every American city by the early 19th century. During the Civil War, containers from Lewis’s pottery company were used by the Union army as primary storage containers for food supplies, which allowed the factory to continue to prosper as others fell by the wayside.
In 1938, John B. Taylor acquired the pottery, formed the JB Taylor Company and transformed the business into a major supplier of dishware, flowerpots and bakeware. Many of the company’s signature patterns were developed during this period.
The company changed hands a few more times after 1970, finally coming into its current appearance in 2007. Stoneware & Co currently operates as a small, locally owned business with just over three-dozen employees and a goal of embracing the natural and simple essences of handmade crafts.