In large dutch oven over medium-high heat saute in bacon drippings, celery, carrots and onion until tender. Add potatoes, seasoning and liquid. Bring to a boil, reduce soup to a simmer and cook until potatoes are fork tender. Add artichokes and continue to simmer soup while making roux.
In medium saute pan, melt butter over medium heat and whisk in flour. Continue to whisk over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add scalded half & half to flour and butter mixture and whisk until mixture is smooth and thick (like cream of wheat).
Add flour & cream mixture to simmering soup and stir until thick and well combined. Take soup off flame and with hand held food processor puree soup to a course puree, leaving some chunks of potato and artichoke.
Return back to flame and add clams along with the clam juice and stir until well combined and piping hot. Serve in bowls with crumbled bacon as garnish.