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Author Topic: Question concerning history of Jim O'leary signed Waterford ABC Block  (Read 585 times)

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Offline westred

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  I obtained a Waterford crystal ABC block a couple of years ago and have always wondered about the history concerning this piece of glass.
I have inquired to a few different local dealers and other posting boards, but never got a real good answer.  Due to the recent financial
problems Waterford has been involved in, it has piqued my interest again.  So, being a rather recent contributor to this board, I thought I'd
throw it out there to see if any of you have a good knowledge of Waterford Glass and could help me with the history and possible value this
piece might have.

  As you can see, from the photos I've included, this piece was signed for a Tomi, July 20, 1970 by Jim O'Leary.  Through the research I have
done on my own concerning Waterford, Mr. O'Leary is now the Design Director and has worked for the company for 4 decades.  I have tried to
track down this specific Waterford item, but have never been able to find this exact piece.  I did find an ABC block paperweight that they used
to carry, but it was a lot different than this one.  The letters were inset and not outset, like mine.  The square area around the letter was highly
polished, not frosted like mine.  Also, my block does not appear to be as polished as they used to sell.

 My first question is could this be a piece that Jim O'Leary made for someone specific, such as a family member, relative, or friend?  Being that the
block was inscribed in 1970, Mr. O'Leary would have been very new to the company and low on the totem pole, so to speak.  Maybe an Apprentice
or Artisan right out of college?  Would he have been participating in "signing events" back then?  I am pretty sure they would have had signing
events, as they do today, back in 1970.  The piece is now 40 years old and in mint condition.  If this was a "one of a kind" piece, made for someone
special or specific, would it have any added value as a Waterford piece today?

  I realize that this could just be a piece of crystal from Waterford that I have not identified yet, and it might be that someone just purchased it at
a special signing event, held by Waterford, back in July of 1970.  If it is "one of a kind" or not, I will probably keep it, as I am an avid paperweight
collector also.  And, IMHO, I think it is a neat piece of Waterford history signed by a new artisan, who later when on to hold the highest position at
the company, in his field of Art.

  If any of you fellow glass admirers have any information concerning the Waterford Company or the career and life of Jim O'Leary that could help me
with the provenance of my "treasure", could you be so kind to pass it on to me?  I just love researching these type of mysteries and have found this
posting board to be a great resource concerning them!  I plan and hope to return the favor whenever, and in any way, I can!    :chky:

  Thanks, in advance, for all of your help and knowledge!,

westred......yea, ya betcha!

And God said, "Let the weights hold down the papers!"

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