McCONNELLS — Celebrate the South’s rich pottery heritage at the Festival at Historic Brattonsville from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28.
Many of the best traditional potters from the Carolinas and Georgia will have booths set up. Potters will be available to discuss their works and to answer questions. Watch pottery demonstrations and listen to experts in the field share knowledge about traditional Piedmont potters, their techniques and traditions.
Jason Harpe, executive director of the Lincoln County Historical Association and Lincoln County Museum of History in Lincolnton, N.C., will do a presentation and book signing at 11:30 a.m. on “Valley Ablaze: Pottery Tradition in the Catawba Valley.” The book examines the work of early and contemporary Catawba Valley potters. The tradition of pottery making in the Catawba Valley dates back more than two centuries, to a time when artisans made pots out of necessity. While times have changed, many contemporary potters continue to embrace the time-honored methods and knowledge assed down from generation to generation. Harpe co-authored “Valley Ablaze” with Brian Dedmond.
At 1 p.m., Dr. Stephen Criswell, director of Native American studies at USC-Lancaster will present a session on Catawba Indian Pottery. Criswell is a founding member of the South Carolina Traditional Arts Network, the former editor of Folklore in the Carolinas, a former board member of the North Carolina Folklore Society, and a member of the Southern Arts Federation’s Traditional Arts Advisory Board.
Regional barbecue will be available for purchase. Interpreters will be on site for tours of Historic Brattonsville structures and will demonstrate brick-making techniques. Children can participate in hands-on activities, as well.
Admission costs $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for ages 4-17. For more information, visit chmuseums.org.