Author Topic: Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID  (Read 1871 times)

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Offline mrvaselineglass

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« on: February 05, 2006, 06:04:22 PM »
Hello all
I found a nice piece of old canary glass, circa about 1850-60 by the looks of it.  It is 5 1/2 inches tall and at about mid-way up, is 2 inches in diameter.  In metric, it is 13.2cm tall.  The base has lots of old wear, very heavy piece, and has a high pitch tone when lightly flicked.  It also has a nice smooth, old 'feel' to it.

http://www.vaselineglass.org/BSspill1.jpg

I have shown it to a few people in the USA, and none could identify it, but suggested that I send it to some European/English Experts, so thought I would see if anyone recognized it.

There is no evidence of any water damage in it, so it has not been used as a posey vase that I can tell.  I was thinking it might be a 'spill' (an old term for a container that held long shafts of wood to light in a fire and then transfer the fire to an oil lamp).  Most spills I have seen from that era had a bigger diameter.  Most American vases from that time period were much taller, so that is the only reason I am looking at the possibility it might have been something other than it appears.  If it is USA, it would be a spill, but if it is European/English, it might be a posey vase.

Any help is much appreciated.

Dave
aka Mr. Vaseline Glass


Offline glasswizard

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2006, 06:26:24 PM »
Reminds me so much of Sandwich glass, but nothing in my books like it. Very nice, Terry


Connie

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2006, 06:49:58 PM »
Dave -  To me your vase/spill looks European.  Something about fire polished? finish.  It looks so smooth and silky.  I am not accustom to that level of finish in American glass until the Elegant Depression era.


Offline mrvaselineglass

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2006, 06:56:13 PM »
Connie
I am not sure about the fire polish either, but it has that nice flint feel to it, almost 'soft'.  Just something about old leaded glass that feels good in the hands.

I still think it looks like something Boston and Sandwich might have made, or possibly New England Glass Co. 

When I get done checking all of the different lists on the internet, If I still don't have any results, I plan on writing to the Sandwich Glass Museum to see if they have anything on it.

Dave


Offline Lustrousstone

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2006, 07:34:08 PM »
My thought would be posy vase, English or European. Possibly Edward Moore or Percival Vickers, some of their citron stuff is quite chunky pseudo cut glass. Thoughts only, not facts. But if you don't want it I'm sure I can squeeze it in  :wink:


Offline mrvaselineglass

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2006, 03:39:13 AM »
Several suggestions have been made (from others outside of this group) that the piece is probably English or European, as the foot is non-typical for American Glass of that era.  I have a sugar bowl that is English from about 1860 that has a similar (muted petal shapes) foot.
Dave

p.s.  Christine, it is staying in my collection!


Offline Bernard C

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2006, 07:56:26 AM »
Dave — My suggestions for this period are PV and M&W of Manchester, and Sowerby.   To these should perhaps be added Joseph Webb and his successors, Coalbournhill Glassworks, Stourbridge, although I am not aware of their products in coloured glass.

And my thanks.   I looked up all my PV material (no luck with your celery, I'm afraid), and found a letter from the late Tom Percival, dated January 2000, accompanied by two photocopied pages from the 1902 PV Electric Light Shade catalogue.     Pattern No. 1 is the lampshade version of my lampshade vase, which I queried recently on this board at this link.   Just below the illustration is an added manuscript note "PART CUT", referring to the cut star at the pointed end, just as I said in my description.   I had completely forgotten that I had this material.

A considerable amount of Percival Vickers material, including several trade catalogues, has survived.   I have seen extracts.   It was in private ownership, but I don't know who owned it.    If it was Tom Percival, he may have willed it and the notebook that he always had with him to Broadfield House, or to the Manchester Records Office.   I count myself fortunate to have known this kind and knowledgeable gentleman, always willing to spend time explaining Manchester glass to anyone who showed an interest.   Only on a few occasions did I have the greatest pleasure in supplying him with quality or rare pieces to add to his comprehensive collection of Manchester glass.   If my memory is correct, old-timers on the earlier GMB may remember the occasional contribution from Tom Percival.

and, yes, he was family, a direct descendant.

Bernard C.  8)
Text and Images Copyright 200414 Bernard Cavalot


Offline Bernard C

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2006, 03:21:48 PM »
Dave — further thoughts.

To my previous list should be added Burtles Tate of Manchester.

Barbara Yates (family?), in her article The Glasswares of Percival Vickers & Co. Ltd., Jersey Street, Manchester, 1844–1914, in The Journal of The Glass Association Volume 2 1987 explains that while the surviving price lists indicate that tablewares were only available in flint (uncoloured) glass, coloured glass being reserved for housewares and fancies, examples of coloured PV tableware were known, indeed Tom Percival had several in his collection.   She did not speculate on the reasons for this.

I think it is worth considering here the difficulties that British glass historians had two decades ago.    There was little appreciation of how factories worked or of their economics.   There was certainly no appreciation of the influence of export markets on production.    Indeed I think many of these early authors had never been inside a factory of any description.  Also there was no Internet.    I continue to be amazed at how well our early historians did, considering their difficulties.

Contrast the situation then with today.   Only a few days ago, I suggested here that my Chance tot glasses could not have been made in a cost-effective way by Chance — they must have been bought in.   David checked this out at the Smethwick Museum, and, sure enough, he discovered that my speculation was correct, indeed all tumblers and stemware were bought in.

Back to PV and your celery.   The surviving price lists probably only relate to Britain / British Empire.   The American market was different, in that both flint and coloured tablewares were acceptable.   I believe that our British glassworks understood this well, and shipped over a mix of products that would suit the market.    Once they started making specials for a particular market, and British trade buyers became aware of this, then it is not surprising that one or two tried out these lines for themselves.

I hope you find this useful.

Bernard C.  8)
Text and Images Copyright 200414 Bernard Cavalot


Offline mrvaselineglass

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2006, 11:02:33 PM »
Bernard
Your deductive investigator insights were correct!  I got your 'ebay' message and checked back.  I am open to all possible leads and did not rule out PV or M&W.  Sowerby might be a stretch, though, as catalogs have survived from them.  

Several advanced collectors that have seen it on other groups/postings have 'leaned' toward the possibility that it equally could have come from a Bohemian glass house, which is also a good possibility.  The only companies that seem to have no possibilities (from generated opinions) are Boston & Sandwich and New England Glass Co.  The search continues.

Regarding getting in touch with me -- I happen to be the webmaster for the website, vaselineglass.org, and any email link on that page (or sub-pages), goes directly to me.
DAVE
AKA: mrvaselineglass  :D


Offline Bernard C

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Old Canary Flint Glass: Need help with ID
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2006, 06:29:16 AM »
Quote from: "mrvaselineglass"
... Sowerby might be a stretch, though, as catalogs have survived from them. ...

Not my view.   Sowerby should be easily at the top of your list of possibilities, by a long way.    Consider the following, sourced from Simon Cottle's book on the glassworks.[list=1]
  • Sowerby's glass recipe book dating from 1802 (that's 1802, not a misprint) to 1835 has survived, detailing daily experiments into the manufacture of a wide variety of flint and coloured glasses.
  • The earliest surviving trade catalogue is No. IX, dating from 1882.   There were eight previous catalogues of which we know nothing.
  • Sowerby pattern numbers were sequential, presumably starting from 1, right through to when they closed.   And they used just one number for all products made to one design.   The earliest precisely dateable pattern number is 1135, registered March 6 1876.   So there are 1134 earlier patterns of which we know almost nothing.
  • Sowerby did not start using the peacock's head trademark until 1876, so none of those 1134 patterns would have been marked in any way.
  • By the mid-1860s Sowerby was by far the largest pressed glass works in England, and probably in the world, with eight ten-pot furnaces, and over 450 employees.   They were producing over 30 tons of finished glass every week.   That's 3,500,000 lbs of glass every year.[/list:o]I think it is fair to say that any collection of unmarked Victorian pressed glass, anywhere in the world, will contain a high proportion of Sowerby glass.

    The problem is identifying it.   One day, perhaps, as is already happening in the paperweight field, calibration of the glass itself, in respect of its density, colour, fluorescence, and radioactivity, will start to yield results.

    Bernard C.  8)
Text and Images Copyright 200414 Bernard Cavalot

 

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