Papers of ceramic artist Susan Frackelton, 1882-1953.

Susan Frackelton Papers, 1882-1953.

Wisconsin ceramic artist Susan Frackelton first gained national recognition as a leader in the world of china painting. She taught classes, operated a retail store, developed her own line of paints, patented a gas-powered portable kiln, and published an instructional manual for amateur china painters (Tried By Fire: A Work on China-Painting, 1885). This group of miscellaneous papers chiefly concern the exhibition of her pottery at shows and fairs throughout the world. It contains a few manuscript letters and many newspaper clippings, some from European papers, concerning her china painting decorative work. Despite its brevity, this is the most significant single collection of her manuscripts that survives. The first and most important document given here is her handwritten notebook containing her glaze formulas.

Frackelton's book about her work, Tried By Fire (New York: Appleton, 1886), is also available in Turning Points in Wisconsin History. Images of her pottery can be viewed in our Curators' Favorites and Wisconsin Historical Images collections. Twelve pieces by her can also be viewed in the Wisconsin Decorative Arts Database.

Most of these miscellaneous papers are from the Wisconsin Historical Society Archives, Milwaukee SC 23; the glaze book is housed in the Wisconsin Historical Museum.

Related Topics: The Progressive Era
The Rise of Skilled Manufacturing
Creator: Frackelton, Susan Goodrich, 1848-1932
Pub Data: Digitized from the original manuscripts at the Wisconsin Historical Society: Archives Collection Milwaukee SC 23, and Museum Collection item #1958.1326.
Citation: Frackelton, Susan Goodrich, 1848-1932. Papers, 1882-1953 (Wisconsin Historical Society Archives Milwaukee SC 23 and Museum artifact #1958.1326). Online facsimile at:; Visited on: 12/7/2021