Since the late 1700s, the Seagrove area of North Carolina has been an important pottery center. Today, there are close to 100 active potteries in this region, and many of them have joined together to form the Seagrove Area Potters Association (SAPA).
The Seagrove area is not limited to the small town of Seagrove itself. The SAPA members are potters who live and work in Randolph, Moore, and Montgomery counties in central North Carolina. Several of them are located along NC Hwy 705, giving the road its nickname of "Pottery Road."
Another pottery hotspot in the Seagrove area is Busbee Road, which is named after Jacques and Juliana Busbee. This couple is credited with bringing national, and even world-wide, attention to Seagrove pottery in the early twentieth century. The pottery created in the Seagrove area during this time was well-known in galleries and shops across the country, and it is still highly collectible. Ever since the Busbees came to town, Seagrove has had a reputation for creative, unique, high-quality pottery.
From to the elegant stoneware platters of Thomas Pottery to the folk art face jugs of Crystal King Pottery, the members of the SAPA represent many different styles and art forms. Quite a few of them are from pottery families who have worked with clay for generations. David Garner of Turn and Burn Pottery, for example, comes from a family whose pottery lineage dates back 300 years.
If you’re looking for an up close, personal experience with the pottery making process, a tour of the Seagrove area potteries is an ideal opportunity. The potters of the Seagrove area welcome visitors, and the SAPA helps tourists plan their visits. The SAPA website and Visitor’s Guide list hours of operation and other important information about local potters.