American Glass

from the

Glass Encyclopedia

American Glass
American glass-maker plate
American glass:
carnival glass plate
commemorating the 1st
American glassmakers

If you are looking for
American Glass there
is always some for sale
on eBay. See what there
is just now - click
American glass

American glass

American Glass: A short history:

American Glass was first made in 1535 if we count Mexico as part of the Americas, and therefore producing American glass. In 1592 glass was also made in Argentina. But neither of these glassworks succeeded due to the small population and the lack of sufficient demand.

True American Glass dates back to 1608, when Virginia was the first English colony to start a glassworks, near Jamestown. The plate in the picture on the left commemorates this first glassworks, and was made as a collectors' item by Fenton Art Glass in 1970. The Jamestown glassworks failed after only a year and so did the efforts to establish glassworks in Salem in 1641 and in Philadelphia in 1682.

The Dutch operated two glassworks in the 1650's in New York (New Amsterdam at the time). We know very little about the glass made in these early glassworks.

The demand for glass items increased until the 1730's when the first successful American glassworks was set up. This was at Wistarburgh, New Jersey, built in 1738 by Caspar Wistar. This American glassworks started producing bottles and window glass the next year, and they also made tableware, but it was not marked so it is hard to identify.

Another successful early American glassmaker was Henry W Stiegel, who set up three glassworks in Lancaster County, west of Philadelphia. He made bottles and window glass but also tried to compete with the imported luxury glass of that day. And the third early glassmaker was John F. Amelung, who bought a failed glassworks in Frederick County west of Baltimore around 1784 and re-opened it as the "New Bremmen Glass Manufactory".

All of these early American ventures were opposed strongly by the British, and after a few years they failed. It was not until the Revolutionary War in 1783 followed by the war with Britain in 1812 together with the trade embargo on British goods, that American glass manufacture really took off.

Between 1790 and 1820 some 63 glasshouses were set up. Protective tarrifs were introduced in 1824 and about half of this wave of glass-houses survived into the 1830's.
Glass Encyclopedia


click on any of
the following links to
our article on that topic:

Advertising glass
Akro Agate glass
Amberina glass
American glass
Ancient glass
Apothecary glass
Apsley Pellatt glass
Art Deco glass
Art nouveau glass
Arts and Crafts glass
August Walther Glass
Baccarat glass
Bagley glass
Barolac glass
Beads (glass)
Bimini glass
Blenko glass
Books on glass
Bottles (glass)
Boyd's Crystal Glass
Brierley Crystal glass
E O Brody glass
Bubble glass
Burtles Tate glass
Caithness glass
Cameo glass
Cameo incrustations
Carnival glass
Cast glass
Chance glass
Charder glass
Cire Perdue glass
Cloud glass
Cobalt blue glass
Consolidated glass
Contemporary glass
Coralene glass
Coudersport glass
Crackle glass
Cranberry glass
Custard cups (glass)
Custard glass
Cut crystal glass
Dartington glass
Daum glass
Davidson's glass
Depression glass
Dew drop glass
Dorothy Thorpe glass
Drinking glasses
DVDs on Glass
EAPG glassware
End-of-day glass
Etling glass
European glass
Fairy Lights
Federal glass
Fenton glass
Fire-King glass
Flygsfors glass
Fostoria glass
Frank Thrower glass
French glass
Fry Glass
Galle Glass
Glass hand vases
Glass Dumps
Gold ruby glass
Goofus Glass
Gray-stan glass
Greeners glass
Hand vases
Hazel Atlas glass
Heisey glass
Historismus glass
Hobnail glass
Hunebelle glass
Imperial glass
Intaglio glass
Irradiated glass
Isle of Wight glass
Italian glass
Jack-in-Pulpit glass
Jade glass
James Derbyshire
Jeannette Glass
Joblings glass
Joe Rice glass
John Derbyshire
J Walsh Walsh glass
Kemple glass
King's Lynn glass
Komaromy glass
Lalique glass
Lampwork glass
Leerdam glass
Le Verre Francais
L G Wright glass
Libbey glass
Libensky glass
Lobmeyr glass
Loetz or Lotz glass
Lost wax technique
Malachite glass
Manchester glass
Marbles (glass)
Marqueterie de Verre
Mary Gregory glass
Mdina glass
Mercury glass
Milk glass
Molineux Webb glass
Monart glass
Murano glass
Nailsea glass
Nazeing glass
New Zealand glass
NZ paperweights
Northwood glass
Opalescent glass
Orient & Flume glass
Orplid glass
Orrefors glass
Pallme-Konig glass
Paperweights of NZ
Pate de Verre
Peachblow glass
Pearline glass
Percival Yates & Vickers
Perthshire Paperw'ts
Phoenix glass
Pictures on glass
Pilgrim glass
Pirelli glass
Powell glass
Pyrex glass
Riverside glass
Reverse paint on glass
Roman glass
Rose bowls
Royal Brierley glass
Ruby glass
Sabino glass
Scandinavian glass
Schneider glass
Shoes in glass
Silhouettes on glass
Silvered glass
Silver overlay glass
Slag glass
Sowerby glass
Spatter glass
Stained glass
St Clair glass
Steuben Glass
Stevens & Williams
Strathearn glass
Stretch glass
STS Abel Zagreb glass
Sulphides in glass
Sun changed glass
Thomas Webb glass
Tiara glass
Tiffany glass
Tiffin glass
Toothpick Holders
Tortoiseshell glass
Tudor Crystal glass
Uranium glass
Val St Lambert glass
Vasart glass
Vaseline glass
Venetian glass
Venini glass
Verlys glass
Videos on Glass
Vistosi Glass
Vitro Porcelain Glass
Walther Glass
Waterford Crystal
Webb Corbett glass
Webb, Thomas glass
Wedgwood glass
Westmoreland glass
Whitefriars glass
WMF glass
Ysart glass

Useful glass links

Glass Message Board

Glass Museum on Line

Books on Glass

Glass Target Searches

In the first half of the 19th century the population of America went from 5 million to 23 million, and the market for glass items increased hugely. To meet this demand the glassmakers invented methods of speeding up manufacture, and mold-blown glassware became very popular.

About the middle of the 19th century the glassworks in Eastern America switched to luxury, cut, lead crystal glass so they could more easily pass on the higher costs of manufacture. There followed several phases of popularity for cut glass (the Brilliant period).

This gave way eventually to the Victorian vogue for colored glass and elaborate decoration. By the turn of the century "Art Nouveau" style had replaced Victorian and had become very popular in America. Glass artists like Louis Comfort Tiffany, Frederick Carder, Arthur J. Nash, and Victor Durand made beautiful art glass pieces that are highly prized today.

Mass production of cheaper glass which was popular with the vast and growing American population became the norm around 1910. Tiffany's art glass fell from favour when servants could afford good quality imitations of the glassware used by their employers. Companies like Fenton Art Glass became strong during the Carnival Glass era (1910 to mid 1920's) and were still producing collectible glass until 2011.

If you are looking for American glass, you can always find items on ebay click American glass

References and Sources:

Our selection of books below includes some new books as well as older classics, and covers between them the whole spectrum of glass made in the USA. Click on the book cover or title for more information.
Alison Berger's glass 2016 Lamps of Tiffany Studios 2016 Timeless Beauty Tiffany Art Bryce Higbee Co. 2016 Indiana Glass 2016 West Virginia Glass Between the World Wars, 2007 West Virginia Glass Towns, 2012, by Dean Six Higgins Glass Higgins Glass Pittsburgh Glass Book on Carder and Steuben glass Steuben glass book Carder Steuben book Fred Carder book Indiana glass book Phoenix Art glass book Tiffany 2008 Tiffany glass guidebook Tiffany Lamps 2012 American cut and engraved glass Fenton 2nd Edition book Fenton Burmese Fenton Patterns 2nd Edn American Cut Glass book EAPG book L G Wright book Fostoria value guide Fostoria American Line book Depression glass book Depression Glass Treasures Carnival Glass book Best Carnival Glass Northwood book Dugan glass book Doty Field Guide to Carnival Glass Big book vaseline Westmoreland glass book Libbey glass book Hawkes cut glass book Anchor Hocking book American glass book Fostoria guide book Hobbs B glassbook Imperial Glass Encyclopedia Glass makers book A History of Owens-Illinois Libbey American Glassmaker 2011

To see more books about American Glass click here

Glass Market Intelligence!
Find your kind of glass easily with our Target Searches - save time and don't miss an opportunity even when you are busy! - CLICK HERE

Glass Blog
have a look

Angela' book on
Tiara Glass

Copyright (c) 1998 - 2023 Angela M. Bowey.
All rights reserved. Copying material from this page for
reproduction in any format is forbidden.
Web site designed by: Angela M. Bowey.
URL to this page: