SEAGROVE, N.C. — The pottery capital of the country sits right in the middle of North Carolina. 

Only about 300 people live in the tiny town of Seagrove in Randolph County, but every year, about 70,000 people travel to the tour and shop. 

Seventy potters live and work within a 30-mile radius. 

The history of pottery here stretches back hundreds of years and up to 8 generations. Second generation potter Eck McCanless credits the clay.

“The history of the clay in the area is huge,” McCanless said. “You can just go out and dig it in the yard and make pots from it.”

New artists also move to the area often to study the craft and create a variety of pottery for tourists to see and buy.

“There are some new ones that have gone to school, to universities to learn the trade. Some have family history and that inspired them to do that, and others just decided that they wanted to be in a community like this,” said Amber Scarlett, executive director of Randolph County Tourism.

Scarlett says, if you want to tour some of the shops, go online first to the Heart of North Carolina website to map out a plan. There are so many shops and galleries it’s impossible to see them all in one day.