Halley to speak about stoneware: made to be useful, now art

"American Stoneware: Objects Both Utilitarian and Beautiful" will be Robert Halley's presentation for the Guilderland Historical Society's program at its Thursday, Oct. 20, meeting. He will discuss the assorted fired clay containers such as the crocks, jugs, and churns in common use for food storage and preservation in the years before refrigeration. Often decorated by individual potters with blue designs, today surviving stoneware pieces are today considered prized antiques, the best now regarded as folk art.

Halley is a retired educator who turned his fascination with 18th- and 19th-century American antiques into an additional career when, in 1970, he and his late wife began to buy and sell early pieces such as coverlets, painted tin ware, and stoneware. Especially interested in stoneware, Halley has a large personal collection and will be bringing some examples for display Thursday evening as he describes their use and manufacture.

Anyone with an interest in 19th-Century Americana is invited to join Guilderland Historical Society members for the free program and the social hour following. The meeting is at 7:30 p.m. at the Mynderse-Frederick House at 451 Route 146 in Guilderland Center. For more information, call (518) 861-8582.

Editor’s note: Mary Ellen Johnson is the vice president of the Guilderland Historical Society.

More Out & About

  • NEW SCOTLAND — The Presbyterian Church in New Scotland will hold its annual Summer Barbecue on Thursday, July 9, from 4 to 6 p.m. in the church’s parking lot, at 2010 New Scotland Road in Slingerlands.

  • The Underground Railroad Education Center’s annual July 4th Oration, commemorating Frederick Douglass’s address “What to the Slave is Your Fourth of July?” will be presented virtually for the first time this year.

The Altamont Enterprise is focused on hyper-local, high-quality journalism. We produce free election guides, curate readers' opinion pieces, and engage with important local issues. Subscriptions open full access to our work and make it possible.