Morgan Pottery Kiln

Cheesequake, New Jersey

 

By most accounts, Cheesequake was an epicenter of clay mining and stoneware pottery production from about 1730 to 1830. Here the Morgan and Warne & Letts potteries, linked by ancestry and marriage, contributed to the growth of American stoneware, manufacturing finished goods and shipping locally dug raw clay to potters as far away as Ohio.

The recently completed widening of N.J. Route 34 threatened the area where the Morgan pottery works formerly stood. Hunter Research located one of the stoneware kilns precisely through a program of archaeological testing (at the time of the discovery, only one other stoneware pottery of its type and age was known in the Middle Atlantic region). With the kiln located, the highway widening project was reduced in size through the use of a retaining wall instead of a slope, thus minimizing site impacts and avoiding the kiln entirely. This in turn reduced the size of the area where data recovery was required, with substantial savings in time and money.

 

Client:  New Jersey Department of Transportation