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Glass Discussion & Research. No ID requests here please. => British & Irish Glass => Topic started by: Ivo on June 09, 2014, 04:21:39 PM

Title: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Ivo on June 09, 2014, 04:21:39 PM
Can anyone identify this inkwell?  Pressed glass, no markings and definitely british.
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: Paul S. on June 10, 2014, 07:30:46 PM
just in case you thought we were all ignoring you Ivo ;)         I've tried the National Archive pictures, books etc., and drawn a blank.
Designs for ink wells and pen trays that do occur in the British Board of Trade Registrations seem to have peaked around the 1860 - 70 period - but judging by the absence of pix in modern books on pressed glass, it seems there has been little interest in these pieces  -  and we don't have many on the Board's search.
This one may well be much later of course.

What is it that makes you so certain this is British?? 
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: Ivo on June 10, 2014, 08:51:49 PM
I bought it in a local charity shop on the isle of Mull last week so German or French is unlikely. Thank you for looking, I really appreciate it :-) :-)
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: flying free on June 10, 2014, 11:23:44 PM
the bobbles and ridges remind me of my bridge thingy and the curved ridges remind me of a sugar and creamer I have that is marked somewhere.
I'll have a search to see if I can find the maker again (Joseph someone or Edward something springs to mind).
However, I know nothing about pressed glass so it's possible those design elements are common to many makers of course  :-[
edited
Might it be worth investigating Joseph Webb or Edward Moore perhaps? It sort of has that look about it.  Just a thought though possibly entirely wrong :-[
http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,44114.msg245604.html#msg245604
m
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: Paul S. on June 11, 2014, 07:20:33 AM
It did occur to me that the rounded pillar type of design around the base looked similar to the moulding found on some British made piano insulators  -  am thinking of one particular design attributed to Percival Vickers.
This is a shape sometimes referred to as a 'jelly mould pattern' - I think Lustrousstone has one in uranium.
But of course this similarity of a design feature doesn't necessarily mean a connection in reality :)
Title: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: agincourt17 on December 10, 2015, 11:27:03 AM
A rare Victorian opaque black glass combined inkstand, pen tray & taper tray bearing the registry date lozenge for 13 March 1875 – Parcel 5, which corresponds to registered design number 289894, the registrant being Thomas Lane & Son of Birmingham, Warwickshire. It measures approximately 11cms long x 10.75cms wide x 5.5 high and weighs 380 grams.

(Permission for the re-use of these images on the GMB granted by Kevin Collins).

Roy shows a ‘2 bottle’ variant of the same design in clear glass at reply #11 of
http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,21284.10.html

Thomas Lane & Son had previously registered a design (number 288295, registered on 7 January 1875 – Parcel 8) for a glass ‘four bottle inkstand, water dish and pen tray’. Does anyone have a photos of such an inkstand to show, please?

In 1865, Thomas Lane started a glass works in Hampton Street, Birmingham. He had been involved in the glass industry as a glass mixer since at least 1837. Thomas was assisted in the business by his two sons,  Josiah (born 1837), and younger son, William, and in 1869 Josiah formally joined his father as a partner in the Company. In 1875, Thomas Lane retired, the partnership was dissolved, and the company was carried on by Josiah Lane. Thomas Lane died in 1877, and by 1881 Josiah and his family had moved to the pleasant suburbs of Handsworth. Josiah's son, Josiah Jnr., was now manager of the glass works.

Josiah Lane then provides an interesting link to the Dudley glass trade, because in 1888 Josiah decided to start up another works at Eve Hill in Dudley and immediately brought his son into the new business – Josiah Lane and Son. The move was possibly due to the fact that the Hampton Street factory was in a dilapidated condition, but more likely because coal was cheaper to buy in Dudley. It would appear that the glassworks were already in existence when Josiah Jnr. settled in Dudley, but nothing is known of its early history. The glassworks under the control of the Lane family stood close to what is now the roundabout at St. James's Church, Eve Hill. The business became a limited company in 1897. Some of the decoration on plain glass was carried out at the Birmingham works which had been kept open. By 1905 the firm employed 65 people. The main production concentrated on lamp glasses and globes, fancy lamp shades, confectionery glass and stationer’s equipment. A company advertisement placed in 1912 (see Hajdamach, British Glass 1800-1914,  page 76), indicates a wide range of colour and decoration on lampshades, including satin finish, opalescent patterns, and cutting. By 1920 the works only operated a one pot furnace as business had declined and three years later it was running at a loss. Josiah Jnr., by then a Dudley Councillor and J.P. in the town, informed his work force that the audited accounts for 1922 and 1923 showed an average loss of £25 per week. Somehow though Josiah kept the works going until it finally closed in December 1932, three months after his death. In the years that followed the factory remained unattended for quite some time, but was eventually used as a builder's yard by a Mr Darby in the late 1950s, and also housed a small engineering company and a motor repair yard for a short while. But time eventually took its toll on the building and Dudley council had the site cleared and made safe in the 1990s. So the final vestige of the Lane Glass Dynasty was extinguished, and, being the last glass works in Dudley, so ended a centuries old tradition of glass making in the town.

Fred.
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: mhgcgolfclub on January 03, 2017, 08:01:37 PM
Hi Ivo

Give me a few days and I may be able to solve who made this inkwell. I can confirm that it is British . I have the same inkwell which has the 2nd date lozenge 1868-83.

The lozenge looks quite clear but on a curved part of inkwell difficult to be sure. It looks like 15th March and parcel 5, not sure of the year.

I with Paul on Percival Vickers , that would be my best guess. I will have another look in better light tomorrow

Roy
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: Paul S. on January 03, 2017, 09:35:37 PM
it would be the year, if you can possibly decipher, that would clinch it for me regarding he Archive details.        Obviously, it seems I have looked through the Kew data previously without success, so no further forward at the moment.               Of course, this may be an example of a design being Registered, originally, on a completely different shape, which might explain why I can't find it so far.
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: mhgcgolfclub on January 03, 2017, 10:44:36 PM
I Have added some pictures. The year looks like 15, but could work for 13. The month looks to be W. The parcels looks like 5 but have not ruled out 9. The year letter is the most difficult and could be almost any letter as its on the curve.
Title: Re: inkwell
Post by: KevinH on January 03, 2017, 11:52:22 PM
From the pics it looks to me to be: Day = 13, Month = W, Year = S, parcel = 5 ... and no other combinations seem to work under Glass.

This comes up in Glass as: Thomas Lane & Son, Birmingham, 13 March 1875.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Anne on January 04, 2017, 01:03:01 AM
I found reply #5 (http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,56950.msg347255.html#msg347255) above as a separate topic on the board so have merged it with this one for completeness.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: mhgcgolfclub on January 04, 2017, 01:38:38 AM
Thanks Kevin and Anne

Thomas Lane & Son was one of the 2 options I had got down to if the day was 13 and not 15. Well found and thanks for merging the 2 .

Roy
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Paul S. on January 04, 2017, 09:15:04 AM
success  -  and pleased to say I've now found the Kew pic in my archives, and will post some time later this morning.          I should have seen this long before now, and really don't know how I missed it, but better late than never.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Paul S. on January 04, 2017, 02:15:14 PM
Here then is a copy of the original drawing held by The National Archives for the Thomas Lane inkstand combination - Reg. 289894 dated 13th March 1875.         
For those who like me are very ignorant of the various watermarking and IrfanView technical facilities and potential, it's only just dawned on me having used the watermarking programme for five years plus, that by starting the process with your image based on a higher pixel rating, then the end result after tweaking with IrfanView appears sharper than if you start out with a low pixel rating of say 250.

In other words what appears to happen is....................            if you watermark with the first dimension quite small i.e. c. 250/300 and subsequently resize to accommodate the Boards optimum first dimension of 700, then you will create a less sharp final image than seems to be the case if you start with 700.        In fact if you start with 700, then the watermarking programme appears to automatically resize your pix down to 500, which means that after watermarking you will need the IrfanView resizing programme to bring your image back to 700, but this doesn't seem to affect the clarity of the end result.

Unfortunately, this is a bit like me trying to teach Chinese - it all sounds utterly nonsense when I write it all out - but I think I know what I mean.

In the course of reading the above - plus the related links - I notice there was a request from Fred for any images of Reg. 288295 dated 07.01.1875, which was another of Thomas Lane's inkstand related inventions.                  Just to say that I do also have a National Archive picture of this slightly earlier Registration if it's of interest still.
Please let me know, and if wanted I will post later this afternoon.

Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: agincourt17 on January 04, 2017, 07:20:59 PM
Thank you for posting the design representation for RD 289894, Paul, and I would pleased to see the design representation for RD 288295 in due course.

Fred.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Paul S. on January 04, 2017, 08:00:49 PM
Picture attached of Rd. 288295 Registered on 7th January 1875  -  obviously for the busy author or diarist who needed four separate ink bottles and didn't have the time to refill just the one.         With my passion for fountain pens, then I could make an exception and collect ink bottle stands such as these, but unlikely I shall see them.
Quality of this image not quite so good as 289894, because after watermarking the returned size came back to me as 375  -  probably due to the fact that my original photo was side on, and in order to correct this I had to 'turn' the picture, thus resulting in a smaller size ready for  watermarking which came back smaller than I would have liked - this then needed resizing to 700.              Anyway that's my excuse. ;)

Word description on the original drawing reads.............  'Combined Four Bottle Ink Stand, Wafer Dish and Pen Tray'        .......    at least it appears that the word is 'Wafer'.              Might 'Wafer' be a word related to ink sands etc., or could the word be something else  -  perhaps it means wafers of blotting paper, possibly??

P.S.    In 1875 when this particular Registration was allocated, the fountain pen hadn't yet been invented, and almost certainly all pens at that time were dip pens, which is all the more remarkable when you consider the quality of the Victorian's copper plate handwriting.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: agincourt17 on January 04, 2017, 09:13:30 PM
Thank you for posting the design representation for RD 288295, Paul -  another wonderful example of Victorian design extravagance.

I haven't yet been able to find clarification as to what the "wafer" might be.

Fred.
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Anne on January 05, 2017, 01:04:18 AM
A "wafer" was used for sealing letters - it was a dry paste disk that provided a quick and easy alternative to sealing wax - see here for how they were made and used: https://herreputationforaccomplishment.wordpress.com/2015/08/25/sealing-with-wafers/ and http://www.victorianpassage.com/2009/07/unfolding_the_mysteries_of_sea.php
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Paul S. on January 05, 2017, 08:56:35 AM
many thanks Anne for the very interesting link - so, a wafer it was.           Thank goodness some people do take the time and trouble to record the smaller details of our social history.
I can remember my mother using red sealing wax when I was very young, and applying it to the knot on the string which was formed when tying a parcel up - which was tied over the brown wrapping paper.........   probably somewhere around 1850 I should think ;D
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: flying free on January 05, 2017, 10:01:19 PM
Paul, once again, thanks so very much for doing this.  I find it absolutely fascinating to see the archive documentation and the actual piece 'side by side' on a thread.  It's fantastic.  Thank you.
m
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: Paul S. on January 05, 2017, 11:04:27 PM
glad you find them interesting m.           -     I think history is so fascinating, almost addictive  - especially items that constitute our social history  -  pieces that ordinary folk used in their day-to-day lives.
With my interest in writing apparatus and pens etc., I've been trawling my Nat. Archives pix this evening, and although he doesn't know it yet, in the coming days Fred will be working overtime with the ink well/ink stand/ink bottle Registrations that I'll post as and when I can get around to watermarking and resizing them.
I know they aren't exciting or colourful, but in theory they're common place pieces that were made in profusion and should still be around and not too difficult to find, especially for those folk here who visit the fairs etc.
I should have something like a couple of dozen, but they won't all hit the screen at the same time, and will spread them over a week or so.....they start around c. 1850. :)
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: flying free on January 05, 2017, 11:12:27 PM
I'm looking forward to seeing them :)
and Anne, thank you also for explaining what a wafer is.  Needs to be on a QI 'W' week  ;D
m
Title: Re: Thomas Lane & Son inkstand combination, RD 289894 of 13 March 1875.
Post by: agincourt17 on January 06, 2017, 03:58:59 PM
I look forward to seeing your 'inky' glass registration design pics, Paul.

Thank you, Anne, for the 'wafer' revelations.

I  have never been a philatelist. but I must say I imagined that postal envelopes with adhesive seals to their flap became commonplace as items of postal stationery with the introduction of the first adhesive postage stamps in the 1840s, so to find that new designs for glass writing accessories were still accommodating storage for sealing wafers 25 years later came as a surprise.

It is fascinating how research into Victorian glass designs can often  throw a light on so many other aspects of social and cultural history that have been all but forgotten or changed almost out of recognition nowadays.

Fred.