I’ve come across more items from the early Jam Factory workshop, as shown in the first photo below. They range from 12 to 18cm high and all have a basically trapezoidal lower section, although some are more rounded than others. They are all inscribed JFW1 and signed PG in the hand of Peter Goss – see the second photo.
By happy coincidence, I have been in contact with Peter Goss in recent days, He is long retired from glass making, having stopped in 1991. However, he has been helpful with confirmations and recollections, and has resolved some of our earlier speculation.
My new items are Jam Factory production pieces from the mid-1970s, just like the items that started this thread. (Unfortunately, the ebay listings in question are now deleted, although two of the items are shown on the dealer’s web page here
as Bottle #1 and Bottle #2 in picture 3.
From Peter Goss I learnt that it is indeed JFW1, with the numeral 1 to indicate the first item of that design. Remember these were intended to be production items, because that was supposed to generate the income to fund the workshop. The fact that every item seems to be JFW1 – not JFW2 or 86 or whatever – is a testament to those heady days of experimentation and discovery.
These items were made by Sam Herman and his trainees (Peter Goss, Rob Knottenbelt, John Walsh and Tom Persson) together with Stan Melis who was brought in to contribute his Slovakian glass making background to production ware. After a short time, Herman was less involved in production and the others did most of the work, although clearly influenced by their training. A piece might be worked on by several of them in various combinations, with design input from all of them. The person who finished the item usually signed it.
The item we were discussing earlier was inscribed JFW1 and signed with initials SM for Stan Melis. That piece is shown on the dealer’s web page as Bottle #2.
I’m no closer to resolving the apparent signature U2 on my blue piece from 1980 shown above. Peter can’t help on that.