The Pot House
Estellville Glass Factory
—Estell Manor Park —
The pots were about two inches thick, thirty inches high, and forty inches wide. Each one could hold 1500 pounds of molten glass, and cost as much as $100 in nineteenth-century dollars to manufacture. Pot manufacture was done with fastidious care, since a flaw in construction could cause a pot to crack and spill melted glass inside the furnace. When this happened, the furnace had to be slaked, shutting down all production, and a dozen men had to labor for hours to extract the broken pot.
Imported clay from St. Louis, Missouri; Germany or England was preferred for the pots though some South Jersey factories used clay from Newcastle, Delaware. After being formed the moist clay pots were dried from two months to a year.
A few days before a pot was needed it was moved to an area of the Melting Furnace, probably on the west side, nearest the Pot House, for pre-heating.
In the side room of the Melting Furnace, the pot was slowly heated to between 80 and 100 degrees. Next, it was moved into a separate small furnace called the Pot Arch, and heated to the temperature of the main furnace. Finally,
Window glass was made from a mixture of silica sand, lime, and potash recovered from the furnace. The raw materials called a “batch,” were dumped into the pot through a small hole in the front of the furnace, and that hole was temporarily plugged. The batch was then left to melt for about twenty-four hours. The intense heat limited the productive life of a pot to an average of seven weeks.
(Inscription below the image in the upper left)
Historic photograph of the pot house. (Inscription below the image in the center left) Tracking clay for melting pots.
(Inscription below the image in the upper right)
Building up a melting pot.
(Inscription below the image in the lower right)
Mixing the batch.
Location. 39° 23.467′ N, 74° 44.528′ W. Marker is in Estell Manor, New Jersey, in Atlantic County. Marker is on New Jersey Route 50. Touch for map. The marker is on Purple Heart Drive within Estell Manor Park. Marker is in this post office area: Estell Manor NJ 08319, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Estellville Glass Factory (within shouting distance of this marker); The Flattening House (within shouting distance of this
Categories. • Industry & Commerce •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 24, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 214 times since then and 17 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on January 24, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.