Welcome to Paoli Clay Company, Inc.

About Us

Since the early 60's the Paoli Company in "beautiful downtown Paoli" has provided

materials equipment and expertise to a growing number of ceramic artists and students.

Paoli Clay supplies elementary and secondary schools, universities and studios from Lake

Geneva to LaCrosse, Door County to Des Moines, Iowa.

Paoli Clay Company was begun by University of Wisconsin-Madison ceramics

professor Harvey Littleton to supply the art program more conveniently. Prof. Littleton

went on to become a key figure in the revival of American art glass and Paoli Clay

offered glassblowing tools for many years as a sideline. In 1962 Dave Jacobs came to

work for Littleton, and in 1967 Littleton sold him the company in order to concentrate on

teaching and glassblowing. Paoli Clay Company's long association with UW's ceramics

has led many graduates to continue relying the company as they became teachers and

studio potters in the area.

Paoli Clay Company's raw materials are not mined locally, but are shipped in from large

deposits in Ohio, Missouri, Kentucky Tennessee and elsewhere where the clays are

mined, dried and processed. At the company two or more different clays are blended

with water in a de-aired mill which compresses the reconstituted material into tubes for

weighing and packaging. Over the years the original "Goldart" stoneware and "Redart

earthenware were joined by standard bodies formulated for Madison Area Technical

College, the Madison Potters' Guild and Don Reitz, former UW professor and one of the

premiere ceramic artists in the world today. Special clay bodies are also made to order

for many customers.

Yet even more than the growing list of clays, glazes, potter's wheels, kilns and tools

available at Paoli Company, central to its success for over 30 plus years has been

owner/operator Dave Jacobs himself. His easy-going manner, friendly humor and

personal interest in his customers has earned him great love an loyalty among his

clientele. He extended generous credit terms to struggling artists and went out of his way

to help them be successfully established. Dave always enjoyed being with the artists as

people, not merely as business contacts, and at a national ceramics conference or a

gallery showing or just a long lunch, Dave was at the center of good times.

Unfortunately , in 1994 Dave Jacobs suffered a severe brain injury which left him

unable to continue operating Paoli Clay Company. His son Mike took leave from his

career to manage the company and subsequently bought it, continuing to provide income

for his parents and ceramic supplies throughout southern Wisconsin and beyond. The

Paoli Clay Company is grateful to its loyal customers for their support through this

transition and looks forward to serving their needs for many years to come.

Contact Us

Better yet, see us in person!

We love our customers, so feel free to visit during normal business hours.

Paoli Clay Company, Inc.

6879 County Highway Pb, Belleville, Wisconsin 53508, United States

1.608.845.7000 Fax: 1.608.845.7015


Drop us a line!


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