The Sheila Harvey Memorial Visual Arts Scholarship Fund

This endowed scholarship fund was started in February of 2017 with memorial gifts from Sheila's funeral.  The purpose of the fund is to provide a scholarship annually to an MHS Senior who will be continuing studies in the Visual Arts at the college level. 

Sheila Eileen Harvey, “The Pumpkin Lady” was born in Decatur, Illinois on April 1, 1941.  She went to be with her Savior, Jesus Christ on Dec. 21, 2016. 

She moved to the Peoria area at the age of 22 and went to work at the Morton Pottery in the fall of 1963.  Although Sheila was always very artistic, her job at the Pottery was in shipping, but as the years progressed she learned all she could about the pouring, glazing and firing of pottery. She remained at the Pottery when it was sold to The Rival Company, who used it to make crockpot liners. 

In 1973 the plant had closed permanently, when Sheila and a friend, who she later bought out, became the owners of Morton Pottery, which operated out of an old garage on the corner of Morton and Mosiman Avenue. A few years later she moved her operation to 331 Detroit Ave.  After 10 years she moved downtown to 142 S. Main and in 2009 moved the business to her home at 105 E. Monroe. 

Each year Sheila created new products using her great ability to visuaize teapots, bowls, mugs and other objects of beauty within the mold of a pumpkin.  Her pumpkins with hand-carved custom names were extremely popular. Buyers often had to wait six months for delivery of one of her handmade custom name pumpkins. Apparently, people felt the custom name pumpkins were worth the wait…Sheila made more than 4,000 of them for buyers all around the world.

Sheila was a great supporter of the Village of Morton thru donations to many causes throughout the years.  She always had time to visit with folks who stopped by her shop.  One of the thrills of her life came in 2000 when she was named the Morton Pumpkin Festival Parade Marshall. She loved riding in the parade and seeing all the people along the way. 

Sheila, kept the legacy of Morton Pottery alive for 43 years because she loved her work, and loved where she lived.  Over the years, her pumpkins were bought for display in homes and businesses in Morton, as well as for gifts to visitors, friends, & newlyweds. But Sheila made more than just pumpkins.  She also created beautiful dishes, nativity sets, ceramic Christmas trees, ornaments, canister sets, and hand painted Easter eggs and animals. 

Sheila Harvey used her God given talents to create beautiful ceramic pieces that reflected the love of pumpkins in Morton, IL. The Sheila Harvey Scholarship Fund would give a scholarship annually to a high school senior who is continuing their education in visual arts. 

 

If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to this endowment fund, please click the button below for online donations.  Or, you can mail a check to 105 E. Jefferson Street, Morton, IL 61550.