Trentham Pottery Owners and Designers

E W T Mayer

bullet Elijah Mayer b1852 in Burslem worked as a potter. He married Emily Cope in 1879

bullet In 1880 Elijah emigrated to Trenton, New Jersey, to work in the pottery industry

bullet The family joined him later. They lived in Trenton until 1894

EWT Mayer

Elijah Mayer

bullet Elijah William Thomas Mayer was born on 6 November 1882, therefore he was an American Citizen. He was always known as Tom

bullet Elijah died from pneumonia in December 1893 and was buried in Trenton

bullet Tom was 11 years old when his father died

bullet Emily brought the family back to England in February 1894 and they lived in Furlong Road, Burslem

Elijah and EWT

E W T Mayer and Elijah in America

bullet In 1901 Tom was a potters' kiln fireman's assistant

bullet In 1908 he founded the Furlong Colour Works in Scott Lidgett Road, Longport

bullet In 1911 he is listed as a commercial traveller in potters' requirements

bullet The factory made and supplied colour and glazes to pottery industry and oxides for vitreous enamelling

bullet An early speciality was mazarine blue for underglaze use for china and earthenware, and the firm was one of the pioneers in its application

bullet The company continued to develop and expand the range of colours in production


bullet Tom married Elizabeth Holland in 1914. They had 4 children. Eric, Donald, Colin and Nancy

bullet In 1931 he was naturalised as British (in UK)

bullet 1935 the Furlong Colour Works was incorporated as limited company E.W.T. Mayer Ltd

bullet In 1940 they moved to larger premises, where it was possible to extend still further, and commence bulk production of glazes and oxides


bullet After living in St Georges Avenue Wolstanton for many years, by the late 1930s, Tom had moved to Fieldway on the Dairyfields

bullet Tom, Eric, Don and Colin were all ARP wardens during WWII

bullet During 1940s the Mayer family extended hospitality to Free French soldiers who were camped in Trentham Park. Tom, Colin and Eric pictured on the far right of each row outside their house


bullet In 1948 Tom revisited Trenton New Jersey whilst on an extended trade trip to the USA


bullet In 1959 an extension to the works was built

New factory

EWT Mayer at opening of new factory

bullet All the sons were directors: Eric (sales), Donald (technical), Colin (manufacturing)

Family at factory

From left to right EWT Mayer, Colin, Eric. Donald sitting in front

bullet In 1961 Tom Mayer died aged 76 years


bullet In 1964 the business continued and its lorries delivered to local potteries throughout the city


bullet In 1965 the company was acquired by Goodlass, Wall and Lead Industries

bullet In 1967 it became Harrison Mayer

bullet Goodlass, Wall and Lead Industries became Lead Industries Group

bullet In 1982 Lead Industries became Cookson Group

bullet In 1994 Cooksons joined with Johnson Matthey to form Cookson Matthey Ceramics

bullet 2002 Johnson Matthey closed its factory at Meir