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A Little Help--Narda, Harry???

  • Subject: A Little Help--Narda, Harry???
  • From: Betsy Mahtani <bmathani@flash.net>
  • Date: Sun, 26 Aug 2001 15:28:43 -0500

In digging clay from a woods pond-to-be to make its earthen dam,
I've run into a deposit of clay much lighter than our normal Oklahoma
red clay. I know there are good quality white clay deposits somewhere in
the area, and have hoped to run into some--the artist in me is excited
at the prospect of my own supply of native clay.  I've also known there
was some of the light clay here, as I've run into small chunks of it
from time to time.
The clay I've removed from this deposit so far (only about a gallon) is
slightly grayish cream, and has gotten mixed with the red clay as I've
dug it out.  I've now dug down to some that appears to be almost white.
The light clay is quite separate from the red clay, but is surrounded by
it and it is too dry to get it out without crumbling.  I'm soaking it to
soften it and make it easier to remove.  I'm an artist and gardener, not
a miner, so I really don't know the best removal methods.

Some years ago, a European porcelain company was trying to find deposits
of good quality white clay in the Tulsa area, planning to locate here,
if it was found.  I don't think they every found a large enough

I don't expect to find a lot, and it may not be the superior clay, but
I'm going to dig out what I can and find out. I can think of all kinds
of uses for good quality native clay--pottery, yard art, etc.,
especially if I could find it in any quantity. 

Do any of you know anything about this light colored clay and/or do
you know how to separate the clay that is mixed?  The only way I know
that might do it is to dissolve it in water and let it settle out. I
know the sand will settle out--may take several dilutions to get it out,
but I wonder if the white clay is finer and may settle to the bottom, or
if it will simply mix with the red.  It is a rather pretty color now, in
its mixed state, but I'd rather have it separated.  Have two colors at
this point; one is a light ivory beige, and the other a warm beige.  

Thanks,  Betsy
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