Author Topic: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight  (Read 1047 times)

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Offline tropdevin

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help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« on: September 10, 2011, 02:54:55 PM »
***

I have this unusual signed Jack Allen paperweight, about 2 inch diameter. What I would be grateful for is thoughts on the following:

  • the likely age;
  • the likely factory (Vasart, Strathearn, Perthshire, Oban Glass, Caihthness...whatever....;
  • the source of the flower silhouette cane.

Can any of the Scottish paperweight experts help?

Alan
Alan
"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."  Abraham Lincoln.

The comments in this posting reflect the opinion of the author, Alan Thornton, and not that of the owners, administrators or moderators of this board. Comments are copyright Alan Thornton.
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Offline KevinH

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2011, 04:27:02 PM »
Nice example. Super Rose cane - never seen that before!

I can't answer the question, but I will put things in different words ...

Can anyone confirm that the orange cogged JA signature cane was not used by Jack at Perthshire Paperweights? Or that it was only used at Strathearn glass - which is where I think it was made.
KevinH


Offline alpha

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2011, 06:07:55 PM »
Here's the info I had collected in my Sig Cane book research:
His signature cane consists of the initials “JA”. While at Perthshire,  he became the first artist to include his personal signature cane in a Perthshire Paperweights weight. Allan made a filigree crown paperweight in 1971 for Perthshire, which incorporated his signature cane embedded in the bottom. Figure Allan-0 documents the Perthshire cane which is predominantly green. Figure Jack Allan-1 contains a yellow/orange color which was used after 1963 and probably before 1971 in his personal weights, based on a comparison of the technical merit of the weights in which it is found. Dave Moir reported that these orange canes were made in 1963 and 1964 at the old Vasart glassworks at Perth when Vincent Ysart was absent. After Salvador Ysart died, and business was tough, a glazier friend of  Augustine Ysart supplied them with cut-off bits from Viltrolite tiles. The tile pieces were melted and used for making millefiori canes. Jack Allan-1 is made of those Vitrolite canes.

   UK collectors have reported a third variety of cane used at Oban:  white letters in a dark field with 25 millefiori florets around the outside. [Jack Allan-3; and Jack Allan-4] Signed weights were also made while he was at Strathearn [Jack Allan-5], and perhaps Vasart.  Richard More, an authority on Strathearn paperweights, has reported:

   “Jack did indeed start at Vasart in 1948 at the age of 16 but he was an apprentice to all three of the Ysarts not specifically just Salvador. In 1953 at 21 Jack went away for his National Service duty and didn't return until sometime in 1955, by this time Dave Moir was also a new apprentice hired in 1954 at age 15. No one but the Ysarts were allowed to make paperweights and no one was allowed to use personal signature canes except for the Ysarts. After Salvador died in 1955 and Auggy in 1956 things became very tough at Vasart financially and a local glazier used to give Auggy and later Vincent his leftover colored cut pieces of Vitrolite which Vincent used to make canes and glassware decorative colors. According to Dave Moir it was in late 1963 or early 1964 at the old Perth Vasart works that he and Jack made Jack a few JA signature canes out of this Vitrolite glass while Vincent was out sick one day. [ie figure Jack Allan-1] According to Dave, Vincent frowned on anyone making friggers on their off time and when Vincent went home for lunch or dinner so did everyone else. Most JA canes were used by Jack after Vincent left Strathearn in 1965 and most likely between 1965 and May of 1968 when Jack left with Stuart Drysdale to form Perthshire Paperweights, or early on at Perthshire as Jack had a lot more leeway there to experiment on his own. Early JA weights may have both Vasart and Czechoslovakian canes in them as Jack, Dave and Auggy used to go out to lunch and beer with Frank Eisner and Jack could have gotten some of these canes from Frank. Regardless, JA signature cane weights are very rare and highly collectable.”
   
   See the section for Caithness Glass about a rare “OG/JA”cane.


Offline KevinH

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2011, 01:10:22 AM »
My initial comments were made while I was trying to do more than one thing at a time. Something I am never good at and should stop trying to do. Yes, the details given to Richard More by Dave Moir are quite clear that the first JA cane was actually made at Vasart Ltd just before the change of company name to Strathearn.

Although Dave Moir's information talks about "... a few signature canes ..." I suspect it refers to slices from a pull rather than different types of cane at that time. And assuming just the one pull, then that first sig cane was the "yellow/orange" one referenced as "Jack Allen-1" in Andy's revised version of the signature cane book (and as Fig 3.1 in the initial, paper-based version of the book).

It is also exactly the same sig cane as in Alan's weight, even down to the hollow and cracked section at the top-right of the cane - a feature also seen in the example I have (ex-Bob Hall weight illustrated on page 137 of his World Paperweights book). My example certainly shows a "dry-ish" look to the orange of the sig cane which is said to be a feature of the vitrolite used.

This all seems to tie in quite well, but still does not confirm a date (or period) for Alan's weight. But if the 1963 to 1968 reference for the majority use of that cane is correct, then I would put Alan's weight into that period rather than during the Perthshire Paperweights years or later.

One other thing - early Perthshire Paperweights items fluoresce the same as Vasart Ltd / Strathearn weights, so sadly testing under UV would not help unless Alan's weight is not green under longwave and blue under shortwave.
KevinH


Offline pooleandpaperweights

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2011, 08:55:50 AM »
Really interesting this thread.  Im assuming that this is either cane 3 or 4?



cheers
Ian


Offline tropdevin

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2011, 09:41:01 AM »
***

Here are images of a relatively rare Caithness Crown made to celebrate the wedding of Anne and Mark in 1973. It was made by Jack Allen at Oban Glass, and is signed with an OG JA cane in the base.

Alan

 
Alan
"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."  Abraham Lincoln.

The comments in this posting reflect the opinion of the author, Alan Thornton, and not that of the owners, administrators or moderators of this board. Comments are copyright Alan Thornton.
 http://www.pwts.co.uk


Offline KevinH

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2011, 04:09:02 PM »
Ian's example is reference "Jack Allen-3" in Andy's CD version of the book. The "Jack Allen-4" refers to a photo of the weight with that cane. Alan's "OG JA" cane is dealt with in the CD book under the section for Caithness Glass. Neither  of these were covered in the initial paper version of the book.

The JA cane used at Perthshire in a Crown weight is shown in both the paper and CD versions of the signature cane book (Fig 3.0 & "Jack Allen-0" respectively). That cane has purple letters each in a thick white cog all surrounded by clear then a row of 18 white-pink-white-green cog canes.

And there is another JA cane, not covered in the book, that looks like the "Jack Allen-0" cane from a distance but is different. It has what seems to be the same structure for the letters but has points of difference, and has an outer ring of just sixteen canes which are basic green over white cogs. Quick reference photos below.

I wonder how many versions of JA canes there actually were!
KevinH


Offline KevinH

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2011, 04:13:28 PM »
And I would recommend to anyone with half an interest in paperweight signature canes to make sure they get a copy of Andy's CD version of his book. :thup:
KevinH


Offline tropdevin

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Re: help needed - Jack Allen paperweight
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2011, 04:17:30 PM »
***

Thanks to all for their contributions on this. Perhaps a short article on JA canes might appear in a future PCC Newsletter! ;D

Alan
Alan
"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."  Abraham Lincoln.

The comments in this posting reflect the opinion of the author, Alan Thornton, and not that of the owners, administrators or moderators of this board. Comments are copyright Alan Thornton.
 http://www.pwts.co.uk


 

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