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The Bradshaw China Company was located
on Hunter Street in Niles.
1915 Sanborn Fire Map location of
the Tritt China Company.
Floor plan of the Bradshaw China
A photo of the Bradshaw Pottery in
Niles in Roundstown, it was built on the P.Y. & A right of way
and Hunter Street. Construction began in April 1901.
In digging the foundation for the
new pottery a big bed of clay of the kind used in making red building
brick was discovered. PO1.509
Companies in Niles, Ohio 1901-1930
Of the many diversified industries in Niles just after the beginning
of the twentieth century, the Bradshaw Pottery Company, which provided
employment for approximately 200 people, ranked high in the industrial
development of Niles.
Early in 1901, an announcement was
made regarding the construction of a pottery which was to be built
on Hunter Street on eleven acres of land in the Roundstown area
on the west side of town between the P. Y. & A. Railroad right-of-way
and Hunter Street. Ironically, when ground was broken for the foundations
of this new pottery in late April, a large bed of clay of the type
used in making red building bricks was discovered. There are no
records as to how that clay was disposed of, but the main building
was constructed on that spot and it was built of brick and tile,
72 feet by 400 feet. Only the latest and
most improved machinery was used and the highest skilled laborers
were employed in producing good quality earthenware.
By late October of that year, the
Bradshaw Pottery was in full operation, producing tableware with
decal styled decorations. By December, the company had a large domestic
trade established and were shipping their chinaware as far as Honolulu.
The 190 edition of Jervis’ “Encyclopedia
of Ceramics” lists the following as officers when this pottery
went into operation: T.R.Bradshaw, manager and president;
A.C. Bradshaw, assistant manager; and J.A. Watkins,
secretary, with W. Silverman in charge of the decorating
department. Watkins was from Pennsylvania and, prior to joining
Bradshaw, he had been in the pottery business in Pennsylvania for
12 years. The Bradshaws were from East Liverpool, and had been connected
with the Bradshaw Pottery in that town.
A fire in October 1904 caused by a
faulty kiln in the decorating room, caused $10,000 damage. But by
early November, some 50 employees in the decorating department were
back to work and full operations resumed shortly afterwards.
By 1906, this pottery had expanded
its facilities to include a large one-story modeling shop and a
two-story building to house the decorating department. There are
apparently no records as to the number of kilns, but photographs
indicate there were probably at least six. Only the latest and most
improved machinery was used and the highest skilled labor employed
in producing good quality earthenware. Most of the raw materials
used by Bradshaw were imported and only the best that could be purchased
was used on their production line. The company was progressing remarkably
well and was recognized widely as a valuable asset to the town of
However, by 1910, the Bradshaw China
Company was in receivership. Frank A. Sebring purchased
the company and renamed it ‘The Tritt China Company”
a subsidiary of the Sebring Pottery Company in 1912.
Workers at the Atlas China Company.
The trademark of Atlas China Company.
Form used to shape the small bowls
at the Atlas China Factory on Hunter Street.
Tritt China Company made improvements at the pottery and new kilns
were built in order to produce porcelain tableware. Austin Clewes
and William Mellor of Niles built kilns in Canada, New
Jersey and East Liverpool and were well-known for their skills and
abilities. William Mellor patented a rotating kiln which he had
developed while working in Niles.
After the Tritt Pottery had been in
operation for a period of time, it didn’t do well enough to
satisfy the officers of the company, so Frank Sebring sold the company.
A new company bought it and named it Atlas China in 1923. The business
began to grow, employing 345 people. During the next year $250,000
was spent on improvements in the various departments of the plant.
But a fire, which started in the boiler room, swept through the
Atlas China on March 30, 1925, leaving the firm with a devastating
Fortunately there was enough stock
on hand to fill orders for the next thirty days. In the meantime,
the chief stockholders located a site in Cambridge, Ohio which had
facilities for the manufacture of dinnerware. The property was acquired
and a new company, The Globe China Company was organized.
In 1926, Atlas China and the Globe
China Company of Cambridge were consolidated, resulting in the Atlas-Globe
China Company of Cambridge, Ohio. During late 1927 and early 1928,
all operations of the Niles plant were phased out and sometime during
the 1930s were sold for salvage purposes.
A small sample of Bradshaw China,
a complete 110 piece set of Atlas China, several pieces of Tritt
China and Globe China are on display at the Ward-Thomas Museum at
501 Brown Street.
Atlas China can still be found at
flea markets and antique stores.
Left: PO1.508 and Right: PO1.507
Photo taken in the Thomas House
dining room of a table set with Atlas China.
Atlas took over the factory of the Bradshaw Mill after it closed.
Samples of Atlas China.
Picture of a plate of hand-painted
Picture of Mr. Tritt with
several employees of the Tritt China Factory, which occupied the
orginal location of Bradshaw Pottery. The photo is dated October
1918. Alma Heeter, Edith Stevens, W.E. Tritt, Adella Crumbaker.
K. & K. China Company was located on 422 between
Route 46 (Eckerts Corners) and Niles Vienna Road (Hakes Corners).
H.F. Kilgellon was the proprietor of the
At that time, in 1921, A.O.C. Ahrendts and two associates
purchased the property and assets and formed Crescent China Company.
In 1923. the company’s name was changed to Atlas China Co.
and the business began to develop and expand, employing 345 persons
at peak periods. During the next year, $250,000 was spent on improvements
at the plant But a fire that started in the boiler room swept through
Atlas China on March 30,1925, leaving the firm with a huge loss.
Fortunately, there was enough ware on hand to fill orders for the
next 30 days.
In the meantime, the chief stockholders purchased a plant in Cambridge,
Ohio that had suitable facilities for the manufacture of dinnerware
and a new company, The Globe China Co., was organized
In 1926, Atlas China of Niles and Globe China of
Cambridge were consolidated, resulting in The Atlas-Globe Co. During
the later part of 1927 and early 1928, all operations of the Niles
plant were phased out. Sometime during the 1930s, the Niles properties
were sold for salvage purposes.
Atlas China Stamp
The trademark for Bradshaw China was a brad or nail
piercing the word “Shaw.” an example of which may be
seen on Page 74 of Lois Lehner’s book, “Ohio Pottery
and Glass Marks and Manufacturers.” The book will also give
you much information on the trademarks of Crescent China, Atlas
China, and Globe China. A collector interested in Bradshaw China
ware is seldom successful in adding any pieces of it to his collection,
for it is very rare.
However, there are still people living who remember Bradshaw’s
successor, Tritt China, and pieces of this porcelain tableware are
still available. It is frequently marked in gold lettering on the
underside “Hand painted By Tritt Studio.” And occasionally,
pieces of ware made by Crescent China, or Atlas China or Globe China,
do surface. But complete table services? Almost never!
Buffet displaying Atlas China set.
We do have a complete set of Atlas China Company
dinner ware in our dining room A floral pattern with 110 pieces,
each one of which has 18 carat coin gold trim around the edge.
The trademark “Atlas China Co, Niles, Ohio” appears
on the bottom of each piece.
We also have a mold that was used in the production
of a small bowl on display in the kitchen of the Ward-Thomas Museum.
Most people are surprised that Niles ever produced chinaware,
but yet over 100 years ago, it was a thriving business in Niles.