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These look like John Kilner dumps but they are not stamped.
Are they?


Hi Ruth,

I can say that the shape and features of these tie in well with one that is shown in Bob Hall's Old English Paperweights book, in a section covering John Kilner. Bob points out that other Yorkshire (and English Midlands) companies also made dumps / doorstops / table ornaments in the green bottle glass, but that the better quality ones - such as with the silver foil flowers - were by Kilner.

I happen to know the owner of the example shown in the book and I have handled it myself. I can confirm that it also has no maker's stamp to the base - just a rough "cracking off" mark. And I have a similar example myself, with nine silver foil flowers and no maker's stamp.

As a point of interest, for those who are not aware, the flower petals were possibly made from the type of foil that was (and still is?) used in cigarette boxes. On the other hand, for the examples discussed here, the flower pot was formed from a myriad of tiny air bubbles.

I will also check through some other articles on English Dumps to see if there are any other comments to be made. Strangely (?) it is an American gentleman (currently president of the Paperweight Collectors Association, Inc.), who probably has the largest known collection of these items, and who has done a great deal of research into them.

Thank you, that's helpful and yes, I posted it to the wrong forum. Does the American gentleman have his collection on the web? I will search for the APC inc!

Me again, with a couple of extra points.

The "American gentleman" goes by the name William Gaskill and, should you wish to contact him, the PCA site is: - in the "Contact Us" section, William's email address is given.

I have checked his articles (3 of them) on English Bottle-Glass items in the PCA Annual Bulletins and one point is about the metal used for the flower decoration. I had used the common and well-ingrained term "silver foil", but William has investigated deeper (quite literally!), by using an already damaged piece, to get at the actual metal and test it. It turns out that it is not silver foil but very thin thin foil.

There is now some agreement that items like yours (and mine) were more likely to be Mantle Ornaments, rather than Doorstops as has often been suggested over the years. With the shape, weight and the centre of gravity of examples like ours, there would have been little chance of holding back a solid door! And William Gaskill puts a good argument for most of these items being factory-controlled output, albeit to "working class" customers, rather than out-of-hours occasional friggers or whimsies. He rightly points out that, judging by the numbers of the surviving examples, it would have meant a LOT of glass "walking out the door", had they been "out-of-hours" pieces.

Amongst the factory marked pieces one has come to light with the mark (in exactly the same style as the Kilner ones) of "Redfearn Bros Bottle Manufacturers Barnsley". That one has "tear drop" air inclusions, which was also a style used at Kilner. This suggests that we need to keep an open mind about whether tin foil flowers might have been made at places other than Kilner. But for now, the evidence does lean towards John Kiner and then John Kilner & Sons, ranging from about 1829 to 1845 or perhaps a bit later.

Thank you for that !
 I agree that they would make poor doorstops but one of mine is perfect and the other has a couple of bashes on it that lead me to think that it may well have been so used.   :)



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