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History of Fostoria Glass Co. – Fostoria, OH.

     The Fostoria Glass Company was founded in Fostoria, Ohio in 1887 by William Brady, Lucien B. Martin, and others.  The town offered free land and cheap natural gas.  Mr. Martin was the first president of Fostoria Glass and previously worked for Hobbs, Brockunier and Company as a national salesman.  Mr. Brady served as secretary and had previously been a General Manager of a Wellsburg, West Virginia plant.  One of the “others” was Mr. J. B. Russell who was previously the manager at Hobbs and prior to Hobbs had managed a plant for King & Sons Company in Pittsburgh, OH.  The factory, which was newly constructed, was completed by December 15, 1887.  The construction only took about five months.  By February 1, 1888, the board of directors was elected for Fostoria Glass.  They were W. S. Brady, Otto Jaeger, L. B. Martin, Charles Foster, and Charles Beam.

One of the first patterns produced was #112 and called Cascade sometimes also called Swirl.  This pattern was a copy of a Baccarat pattern.  By December 1888, patterns #140 Virginia and #141 Sterling were introduced.  Pattern #150 Captain Kidd was a copy of Fostoria’s own pattern #140 Virginia.  Some time later this same pattern was called Foster or Foster Block.  Other Fostoria patterns in 1889 included:  #162 Late Icicle, #183 Victoria, which was a copy of Baccarat’s Cascade.  What happened to the pattern numbers between #162 through #182 is unknown.  In 1891, pattern #205 Valencia and #233 Ruth were introduced.  Pattern #235 Olive and #240 Marguerite were the last two patterns produced in Fostoria, OH.  Henry Leibmann’s book Fostoria Factories, based on old factory records, states pattern numbers 97, 162, 175, 184, 187, 226, 255 and 301 were pressed ware.  No known descriptions of these items or patterns associated with these numbers exist. 

By mid 1891, the natural gas supply was questionable. By the end of this year, Fostoria Glass Company had moved to Moundsville, W. VA.

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