9:30 AM



I am continuing to post the Salesman's journal and we pick up the story up with his departure Koon's Spiritual Rooms as he heads to visit the glass & paper manufacturer's in Wheeling, Virginia [now West Virginia]. From there he travels to Pittsburgh and then by train to Baltimore. What a hectic life it was for a traveling salesman. 


The image above comes from the Ohio Historical Society's web page- great isn't it?

On Monday morning the 8th I started (on foot) for Chauncy and reached there at half past 12 o’clock. It rained slowly and steadily from daylight to 10:00 a.m. and since I had my rubber overshoes and my umbrella, I wasn't soaked to the bone. I was able to take the Athen’s stage at 2:00 p.m. and spent the afternoon gazing at a stereoview I purchased of Koon's spiritual room until we reached Logan shortly after dark and I stopped there overnight.
            The next morning the 9th was Election Day and I started back to Lancaster and reached there before 11 o’clock a.m. Just before 12 o’clock noon, It was on the railroad twenty-two miles east to Lexington. There I took a stage for Zanesville, ( 20 miles )and arrived there about 5:00 p.m. I just had enough time to get supper and still reached the depot  for the evening train in time to start for Wheeling, Virginia [West Virginia]. The next day on the 10th, I reached Wheeling about 1 o’clock a.m.

Wheeling, Virginia
Glassware & Paper Manufacturers

            I lost no time and spent the remainder of Wednesday among the glass and paper manufacturers. The paper manufacturers use a small amount of white clay for filling gaps between the paper fibers providing a flat surface for better impressions on the printer’s press and are anxious to get an article whiter than any they have used. They tell me what they use in Wheeling costs them about 1 1/4 cents per pound and it is bought from Delaware. They ask if we could we furnish them an article as white as the purest of ours. I think they would be glad to get it at $40 per ton.  The demand in the whole country would be very great opportunity for us.
            The rest of the day was very bad. I spent it with the glass manufacturers. They on the other hand, import all the clay they use for pots or crucibles from Germany and England.  It costs them generally from $25 to $28-per ton. All but one of the parties with whom I visited seemed desirous of testing our clay and promised to do it- if I sent them enough to enable them to do it. Most of them thought it might do, -- some were very doubtful, and some were sure it would not. I left small samples with all but one firm. He did not wish any and is a German Potter who knew the clay was good for nothing....  He would not try it at all.

East Liverpool, Ohio
Yellow & Rockingham Ware

            Thursday morning October 11th, I took passage up the Ohio River to East Liverpool on the Packet Rosalie. She is only 111 tons, built in 1854 and a smaller steamboat than the Clifton. East Liverpool, Ohio which is 47 miles above Wheeling and 47 miles below Pittsburgh (also 4 miles above Wellserville) and there are nine potteries.
            All make the yellow and Rockingham ware, which is quite a common for inexpensive household articles such as chamber pots, spittoons, pitchers, and bowls but are visually different to the eye. The difference is Rockingham, unlike the fine china from Rockingham, England, has a heavy brown glaze while Yellow ware is made from kaolin rich in iron turning the pots a corn or mustard color shade and yellow ware, unlike Rockingham can withstand the fire of the hottest cookstove.
            Let me reflect about the wonderful innovation of the cookstove as opposed to the fireplace. I grew up watching mother lift heavy cast iron pots in and out of the fireplace. Once the cook stove became popular In the 1840s, tinware and crockery rivaled cast iron.
            In East Liverpool, I found them all [pottery manufacturers] very desirous to get hold of our clay since our kaolin has traces of iron which would be good for yellow ware.  I gave them liberal samples and promised to send each a barrel as soon as convenient…. Although promised additional kaolin to send soon to Woodward, Blakely & co. who ordered 20 barrels.
            Woodward and John Blakely are the wealthiest real estate owners in town, originally from Staffordshire, England these gentleman manufactured chinaware in Pittsburgh before arriving at East Liverpool in 1839. Their partner who is the co. of their firm is Jabez Vodrey is also from Staffordshire, England and joined them in 1847. Their factory has three kilns and many potters.
            I want to send George S. Harker ten barrels for himself and another eight barrels to distribute among the other potters. Mr. Harker told me of his previous partner, Mr. Taylor who opened a chinaware factory in Trenton, New Jersey in 1853, under the name and style of Speeler, Taylor & Bloor. I will make a visit to their factory when I am in New Jersey.
            I think that Liverpool men will want thousands of tons per year at a price that will pay us from three to five dollars per ton -- not profit. 








Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

            I left for Pittsburgh on Friday evening October 12th and on Saturday morning the 13th I found myself in Pittsburgh. 
            I spent the day among the glass men chiefly and found them wedded to the German and English using Sturbridge Clay that is a type of clay pure and free of any lime and iron. They doubted if ours would answer their needs and though it was too light and had too much iron, &c &c. Needless to say they generally are unwilling to experiment with our clay.

Glassware- F & J McKee

            However, there is another Pittsburgh glass manufacturer, who began making flint glass in 1853 at the foot of 18th Street in Bingham on the South Side of Monogahela River, Messr. McKee gave me the most encouragement. They wished for a liberal sample and promised to try it and feared it would not do; but they desire to find clay in this country that will make them independent of Europe.

Brimingham-
Pottery- Daniel Bennett

There are no potteries in Pittsburgh and I found only one in Birmingham (across the Monongahela River near F & J McKee) owned by Daniel Bennett. Surprised as I was, he had a keg about half full of our clay which he procured some two or three years ago through some firm in Louisville (he thought). He could not make it work very well. However, he would be glad to have 10 barrels at a fair price and would make further tests. He said it was good to mix with other clays.

Baltimore, Maryland

            Saturday evening the October 13th, at half past 9 o’clock I left Pittsburgh for Baltimore and reached Baltimore Sunday PM at one o’clock. Much time was saved by not taking the National Pike by stagecoach but first a steamboat down the Monongahela canal to Fairmont, Virginia [West Virginia] to the Baltimore & Ohio railroad.
The train seems safe and all repairs were made since the accident two years ago when poorly laid rail west of Cumberland (which I will be passing soon). That accident caused two passenger cars to tumble down a hundred feet into Cheat River, killing eight passengers and injuring many more. As I write these words, I can stop glancing at the parlor stove in my car and shutter remembering how the Baltimore Sun Newspaper described how the parlor stoves broke free burning injured passages with hot coals.