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Member Spotlight

The Annapolis Pottery

The Annapolis Pottery

Since 1969, The Annapolis Pottery has been unique in its approach to business.  The company was founded on a vision that our friends and customers appreciate the creative things in life, and that they could provide them with not only with art, but with artwork that they could use every day. 

They are passionate about designing pottery that’s not only creative, but functional and affordable as well.  They hold fast to a long-time commitment to earth-friendly products and insist on nothing less than quality and value in every piece they offer you.

Over these many years, they have searched far and wide for great potters and artists who value quality, creativity and craftsmanship as much as they do.  They have met fantastic people along the way, and have made many, many friends.  And through all of this, they are proud to say that 95% of the products we carry are made within the USA.

When you bring a piece from The Annapolis Pottery home, you’ll appreciate it from the first day you have it and for many years to come.   Simply, their pottery will become a part of the fabric of your life. 

It all started back in 1969 when Dr. Brian Mitchell, a British physician, and his wife Jan opened The Annapolis Pottery in a tiny building on Cornhill Street in the heart of the Annapolis historic district.  Visitors would often drop by the watch Brian and Jan practicing their craft, and to catch up on the local news of the day.

Brian and Jan retired in 1980, and The Annapolis Pottery was purchased by Bill McWilliams, who had previously been a corporate attorney.  Bill subsequently married Genevieve McWilliams, and together they built on the success that Brian and Jan had begun.

In 1994, The Annapolis Pottery moved from Cornhill Street to its present location at the corner of State Circle and Francis Street, directly across from the Maryland State House.  A human “fire chain” was set up between the two stories, and each piece of pottery was passed hand-to-hand from the old location to the new. 

Their historic 1850’s building began as a stage coach stop and boarding house, and later became a brothel for a period of time before becoming a cafeteria.  For many years, it was home to the Annapolis YWCA, which occupied the building until the Pottery moved in.


Some say the old building at 40 State Circle is haunted by the ghosts of visitors past.  They can only say that odd noises and footsteps – especially at night – are the norm at the Pottery, and our staff have been spooked many times over the years!  They always joke that our ghosts must have an appreciation for fine ceramics.

During the summer of 2008, the Pottery was purchased by Patrick and Melanie Murphy as Bill and Genevieve retired and began their world travels. 


Today, Melanie runs The Annapolis Pottery day-to-day, and her keen aesthetic and energy are apparent throughout the shop.  Pat can be found drinking coffee, chatting with customers or wandering around with a cordless drill in his hand. 

They are proud of the 40+ year history at The Annapolis Pottery, and are delighted to call so many wonderful people our friends and customers.  Pat and Melanie and their talented staff also take great pride delivering great service and ceramics to our customers around the world!

The Annapolis Pottery