Turn-of-the-Century Glass Factories made Pattern Glass Tableware

by Debbie Coe
Volume 23 No. 7 - March 1997

At the turn of the century, there were numerous glass factories operating in the United States. Most were located in the Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia areas because of access to natural materials and a good supply of natural gas to run their furnaces.

Many of these factories were started as family-run businesses. Pride of workmanship was something each cherished. Many of the different factories had employees who were members of the same family, so it is not surprising that some of the factories bad similar designs and colors.

Today, only a handful of companies remain open for business. Very few are still owned by the original founding family.

To show the wide variety of companies that made pattern glass tableware, the following list was compiled. Many times a factory has gone through many owners and/or reorganizations. For each factory, the name, dates of operation, location, major pattern(s), and major changes are given.

  • Adams & Co., Pittsburgh, PA, 1851-l935, Liberty Bell, Kings Crown. In 1935, this company was making percolator tops.
  • Aetna Glass, Bellaire, OH, 1880- 1889. Hobnail, Squares, Jumbo Fruit Bowl, Goddess of Liberty.
  • American Glass, Anderson, IN, 1889-1890. Opalescent, decorated, cut and engraved ware. This company was started by John Miller, former Buckeye Manager. The factory closed after only a year of production. It was then renamed Hoosier Glass and became a producer of medicine bottles.
  • Atterbury & Co., Pittsburgh, PA, 1858-1902. Milk glass covered animal dishes and Basket weave.
  • Bartlett-Collins, Sapulpa, OK, 1914-1981. Sheraton, Twitch. This Company was the only one to have catalogs printed in both English and Spanish. In 1981 this company was sold to Lancaster Colony.
  • A.J. Beatty & Sons, Steubenville, OH, 1850-1891, Beatty Rib, Daisy & Button with V.
  • Beaumont Glass, Martins Ferry, OH, 1895-1906. Seaweed, Columbia.
  • Belmont Glass, Bellaire, OH, 1886-1952. Rose Cameo, Dewberry. This factory burnt to the ground in 1952, leaving very little information about it.
  • Bryce Bros., Mt. Pleasant, PA, 1896-1965. Cut, decorated and engraved stemware. In 1966, this company became part of the Lenox Corporation under a new label Lenox Crystal.
  • Buckeye Glass, Martins Ferry, OH, 1879-1898. Acorn, Reverse Swirl. Harry Northwood worked at this plant in 1887. The factory burned to the ground in 1896.
  • Cambridge Glass, Cambridge, OH, 1901-1957. Caprice, Mt. Vernon. After the closure, many molds went to Imperial Glass.
  • Central Glass, Wheeling, WV, 1863-1939. Chippendale, Log Cabin.
  • Challinor, Taylor & Taylor, Tarentum, PA, 1866-1893. Flower and Panel, Blockade. This factory was also lost due to fire.
  • Consolidated, Coraopolis, PA, 1879-1937. Covered animal dishes, Jeweled Moon & Star. As an interesting note, this company also supplied the restaurant trade plus made furniture knobs, gazing balls, bird baths and seed cups.
  • Diamond-Dugan, Indiana, PA, 1891-1931. Inverted Fan & Feather, Jeweled Heart. This company underwent 3 major changes before finally being destroyed by fire.
  • Duncan-Miller, Pittsburgh, PA, 1865-1955. Canterbury, Sandwich. This company was sold in 1955 to the United States Glass Co.
  • Eagle Glass, Wellsburg, WV, 1890-1913. Mostly novelty items in milk glass.
  • Federal Glass, Columbus. OH, 1901-1970. Lovebirds, Sharon, Rosemary, Sylvan.
  • Fenton Art Glass Co., Williamstown, WV. 1906-present. Butterfly & Berry. Orange tree, Georgian, Lincoln Inn. Still family-owned today and producing a wide range of gift ware. Tours are available at the factory for visitors to watch glass being made.
  • Findlay Glass, Findlay, OH, 1886-1902. Onyx, Beaded Medallion, Acorn.
  • Fostoria Glass, Moundsville, WV, 1887-1986. American, Colony, Jamestown, Coin. The company was sold to Lancaster Colony.
  • Fry Glass, Rochester, PA, 1901-1933. Pearl oven ware. The company was purchased by Libbey Glass.
  • Gillinder & Sons, Philadelphia, PA, 1861-1891. Classic, Westward Ho.
  • Hazel-Atlas, Washington, PA, 1902-1964. Moderntone, Royal Lace, Florentine. Continental Can purchased the company in 1956, and was in turn purchased by Brockway Glass in 1964. It is still in operation today.
  • A. H. Heisey Glass, Newark OH, 1895-1957. Greek Key, Thumbprint, Colonial. The molds went to Imperial and upon Imperial's closure, were purchased by the Heisey Collectors of America.
  • Hobbs, Brockunier, Wheeling, WV, 1845-1891. Daisy & Button, Hobnail.
  • Hocking Glass (Anchor-Hocking,) Lancaster, PA, 1905-present. Mayfair, Princess, Fire King. Continues today to make a wide range of table and oven ware.
  • Imperial Glass Co., Bellaire, OH, 1902-1984, Candlewick, Cape Cod. Dalzell-Viking is currently reissuing the Candlewick pattern.
  • Indiana Glass Co., Dunkirk, IN, 1907-present. Pyramid, Tearoom, Avocado. It is now a subsidiary of the Lancaster Colony Corp.
  • Jeannette Glass Co., Jeannette, PA, 1909-present. Cherry Blossom, Adam, Iris & Herringbone. It continues today to make domestic glassware.
  • Jefferson Glass Co., Steubenville, OH, 1901-1933. Swag w/Brackets, Chippendale.
  • Libbey Glass, Toledo, OH, 1888-present. Tableware. In 1935, Owens-Illinois purchased the company and it became a division of that company, retaining the Libbey name. Tumblers made by Libbey are in most households today.
  • McKee Glass, Jeannette, PA, 1910-1961. Rock crystal, Laurel. The company was sold to Thatcher Glass in 1951. The Jeannette Glass Company purchased the firm in 1981.
  • Millersburg Glass, Mlllersburg. OH, 1909-1912. Hobstar & Feather, Country Kitchen. This company was formed by John Fenton, one of the Fenton brothers.
  • Morgantown Glass Works, Morgantown, WV. 1903-1965. Palm Optic, EL Mexicana. In 1965, it was sold to Fostoria Glass Company.
  • New Martinsville, New Martlnsville, WV, 1901-1985. Radiance, Moondrops. The factory was renamed Viking Glass in 1944 to present a new image to the public. The factory was closed for over a year before being purchased by Ken Dalzell, a former Fostoria employee. He renamed the company Dalzell- Viking and it continues today to make a wide range of gifts.
  • Harry Northwood Co., Wheeling, WV, 1902-1924. S repeat, Royal Oak, Fluted Scrolls.
  • Paden City Glass, Paden City, WV, 1916-1951. Cupid, Party Line, Peacock & Rose.
  • L.E. Smith, Mt. Pleasant, PA, 1907-present. Mt. Pleasant, Wigwam. Recently reorganized and continues today to make many gift ware and table items.
  • United States Glass Co., Tiffin, OH, 1891-1985. Flower Garden & Butterflies, Kimberly. Usually referred to as Tiffin Glass, since that was the only surviving factory from a conglomerate of factories.
  • Westmoreland Glass, Grapeville, PA, 1892-1985. English Hobnail, Paneled Grape, covered animal dishes. The Westmoreland Museum is currently having glass made by Summit, Mosser and Plum Glass companies, to have for sale at its gift shop. Unfortunately, most of the pieces bear the original Westmoreland marks.

Debbie Coe is an antiques dealer specializing in American glass. She sells in numerous shows throughout the Northwest and her merchandise is also available at Lafayette Schoolhouse Mall, Centralia Square, Star Center and the Seaside Antique Mall. (Reprlnted with permission from Old Stuff - December, 1996/January, 1997.)