Welcome to the Porcelain Insulator Collector's World of Mud!
Similar to their glass counterparts, porcelain insulators date back to before
the Civil War for telegraph wires. In North America glass was always the
predominate material for communications insulators but porcelain has become the
standard for power distribution due to its greater strength and surface
Porcelain insulators did receive the same level of interest as glass in the
early years of insulator collecting, but have been gaining popularity in the
last ten years. They are equally historically
significant as their glass counterparts and available in as many colors and significantly more styles.
Within the last 10 years or so a number of factors have contributed to the rapid
increase in interest in porcelain:
- More information has surfaced about the porcelain insulator business and a
number of dedicated individuals have written books,
articles, and reprinted catalogs that have
significantly increased collector knowledge and interest in the porcelain
side of the hobby.
- Glass prices have been on the increase in recent years, making porcelain
an attractive and affordable alternative. Porcelain insulators are now
much more available at insulator shows.
- More and more early "classic" porcelain has been taken out of
service as utilities increase distribution voltages and collectors go
- Collectors have realized that the amount of color available in porcelain
is very significant and has increased as more distribution lines are
- The increase of information available on the internet as well as the
variety of porcelain insulators available on Ebay give a larger population
exposure to porcelain insulator collecting.
- More historical interest has been generated in the early development of
power generation and distribution which has been primarily dependent on
porcelain insulators. Current linemen are much more familiar with porcelain, as very
little glass remains in use today.
- New styles are still being found every year (if not every month!)
- Old trade journals have increased collector knowledge of where to find the
I hope you've enjoyed this overview of porcelain insulator collecting. We
look forward to meeting another "Mud Hound" on-line!!!
to the Insulator home page
Please send your questions and comments to
Bob Berry at
Last updated Sunday, August 31, 2003