Author Topic: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer  (Read 928 times)

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Offline neilh

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Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« on: January 21, 2012, 10:21:17 AM »
Molineaux Webb did 4 main pressed frosted sets which they registered in the 1860s, starting with the Greek Key pattern of 1864, and followed with the patterns of raised dots, whole frosted, and frosted bands. These must have been made in some quantity as they are the most likely ones to show up at auction today.

In the pressed catalogue I could see that there was definitely one, and potentially a couple of other patterns, which were very likely frosted but predated these. The one I was certain of was fern pattern 427, which I think dates to 1862 plus or minus one year. It is used on a creamer, a sugar bowl and a finger bowl. I have been looking for one of these to turn up for a couple of years - they must be pretty rare - and this week I found an example of the creamer.

Imagine my surprise then when I examined it and found the word "PATENT" on the creamer. I have not seen such a word on any piece, but as I was already anticipating this fern pattern as the first example of pressed frosted Molineaux Webb, it is somewhat intriguing.

The company issued two patents in the relevant timeframe. Alas I only have the abstracts and would need to go to a research library to find the full story, but they are:
August 1861 - improvements in the manufacture of articles of glass
December 1862 - improvements in the manufacture of articles of pressed glass

This also got me thinking as to when the first pressed frosted items were produced. I know that with the Manchester factories, there was a sudden rush to register frosted pieces in 1864/5 by Molineaux Webb, Percival Vickers, and the Derbyshire brothers. My knowledge is sketchy of factories in other areas but I'm not aware of any frosted pieces being registered prior to 1864.

So my contention is that this fern piece could be the first pressed frosted design issued by a British glassworks, or perhaps the first one to be made under whatever patent Molineaux Webb held from the early 1860s.

Any thoughts? Anyone seen glass with PATENT on it which didn't relate to the standard design registration system?


Offline Sid

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2012, 01:12:46 AM »
Neil

Very cool (from a fellow in frosty Canada)! I have seen several pieces of British glass with "patent" marked on them and am certain that it is unrelated to a design registration in the UK.  It is a different story in the USA where there are both design patents and utility (new or improved article or maching or process ...) patents.   Maybe somebody on this board will have the Patents for Inventions Abridgements of Specifications Class 56 Glass for the period 1855 to 1866 and can scan a couple pages for you (and us) with the two 1861 patents.  I only have them from 1901 to 1930 so no help from me on that front.  

How long did a patent provide protection for in the UK in 1861?  The rush of design registrations in 1864/5 could indicate that the patent was expiring and other companies were now able to make frosted glass.  In the US it was possible to get patent terms that varied from 3 years to I think 14 years.  There was a larger fee involved for the longer term.

The frosted area looks like it is mechanically abraded instead of acid frosted.  Is that correct?

Sid

Added:  Another possibility for the registrations by other companies is that they found a method of frosting glass that was not protected by the patent.


Offline Bernard C

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2012, 07:59:44 AM »
...   Anyone seen glass with PATENT on it which didn't relate to the standard design registration system?

Neil — Yes.   Two of the Sowerby patents, #2433 of 15 September 1871, and, possibly, #4505 of 15 October 1881.   This second patent in my working copy of Cottle has an old pencilled note added: "Re 'PATENT' on sugar bowl pattern No. 1616 Rd. October 19 1881??"   The 1616 sugar bowl is the one with vertically ribbed rounded corners where the naturalistic decoration on the sides was picked out in fired-on enamel.   I can assure you that my pencilled note made sense when I wrote it many years ago, but I can't figure it out now as it doesn't seem to tie in.   Perhaps Hajdamach I explains it (mine has gone temporarily walk about).   I think Roy has had one of these through his hands — any ideas Roy?

Other examples of British glass carrying the moulded word PATENT:
  • At least one of the Hayward pavement lights, see here,
  • Bottles — many of the bottle patents relate to innovative closures,
  • Davidson's #3 and #5 "dome" flower blocks, see here,
  • Lillicrap's Hone.

I'm sure there are more.

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


Offline neilh

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2012, 08:48:49 AM »
Thanks Bernard. Interesting info from the Davidson website

"The applicant then had 10 months to submit a complete specification... The Patent Office only keeps copies of complete specifications, not of the original application. Thus if an application was abandoned, then only the title of the application remains."

So some of the various Molineaux Webb patents may have been applied for but not granted. If their patent of 1861 or 1862 was not granted, this might explain why none of their other frosted items bear the word PATENT. Maybe only the frosted fern has it when the patent was still going through the application process. That would make sense as the dates tie up, but I would have to do additional research to prove it.


Offline Bernard C

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2012, 09:07:38 AM »
Neil - See The National Archives of the UK research guide: Inventions: patents and specifications.   I noticed this while browsing around The National Archives website in relation to Paul Stirling's topic here.   I hope it helps a little.

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


Offline neilh

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2012, 10:35:34 AM »
Ok I have done a little more digging and it seems Thomas George Webb made 4 patent petitions during this period rather than 2

7th August 1861 -  improvements in the manufacture of articles of glass
1st August 1862 - improvements in the manufacture of flint glass
4th December 1862 - improvements in the manufacture of articles of pressed glass
6th March 1863 - improvements in the manufacture of articles of pressed glass

All were given "like notice" within a matter of six months. As far as I can tell, this means they were granted, but I'm not 100% sure on that point. I can see I'm going to have to visit the British Library and see what these patents were for...


Offline Bernard C

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2012, 12:15:42 PM »
Neil — Can you check that they have these documents before going, to save a wasted journey?   Also you may be able to order these documents in advance, so they're ready for you when you arrive.

Also, if you are permitted to take photographs of documents for posting on the GMB, would you please find out exactly how images should be watermarked, including capitalisation and punctuation.   As you will appreciate, we have to be ultra careful to get it absolutely correct, otherwise we are likely to make it difficult for future researchers.

The agreed National Archives watermark for items over 50–51* years old is:-
  • © 2012 John Smith, courtesy of The National Archives of the UK

Theirs might be any one of:-
  • © 2012 John Smith, courtesy of The British Library Board
  • © 2012 John Smith, courtesy of The British Library
  • Something different.

Bernard C.  8)

* — we still don't know whether it is 50 years on a daily basis or 50 years on an annual basis, with a whole year's worth coming out of Crown Copyright on the 1st January or some other date each year.
Text and Images Copyright 200414 Bernard Cavalot


Offline mhgcgolfclub

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2012, 01:02:08 PM »
While having a look through some of my pressed glass I found this Davidson dish which does have the RD 96945 registration number also has the word PATENT on it.

Bernard I am sorry not sure which piece you are describing although I most likely do have a picture somewhere if I had one.

Roy


Offline neilh

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2012, 03:30:55 PM »
You wait ages... then three come along at once.
Bagged an example of the sugar bowl from this set (minus the lid), which was sold with another example of the creamer. The sugar bowl does not have the word PATENT on it, but both creamers do.


Offline Paul S.

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Re: Molineaux Webb - PATENTED pressed frosted creamer
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2012, 08:32:31 PM »
well done  -  nice pieces Neil, it's an attractive design, helped no doubt by the frosting and the 'pump' style handles.       Regret to say I haven't made any progress with my Sowerby PATENT sugar bowl, yet.

 

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