History of Jefferson Glass Company
1900 - 1933
Steubenville, OH: 1900 - 1907
Steubenville, OH. plant leased to Imperial Glass Co.: 1908?
Follansbee, WV: 1908 - 1933
The Jefferson Glass Company was founded in 1900 by four partners: Harry Barstow, George Mortimer, Grant Fish and J.D. Sinclair. It operated in one form or another from 1900 into 1933. Initially the company was located in Steubenville, Ohio. They took the company name from the name of the county Jefferson County in which Steubenville resides. The company remained in Steubenville, OH until 1907.
From 1900-1907, Jefferson specialized in the making of opalescent glass. An early advertisement Jefferson placed in the December 13, 1900 Crockery & Glass Journal proclaimed that their opalescent glass was "better and cheaper than imported". The January, 1901 China, Glass & Pottery Review announced that "the company was formed to manufacture fancy glassware, which heretofore has had to be imported. There is nothing too fine for the Jefferson capacity."
In 1908, the Jefferson Glass Company moved to a new location, five miles away in Follansbee, West Virginia. The old Steubenville plant was leased to the Imperial Glass Company by Jefferson; unfortunately the plant was destroyed in a fire by years end.
After Jefferson's relocation from Steubenville, the new Follansbee site specialized in producing non-opalescent crystal until its closing in 1933. Jefferson also briefly operated a plant in Toronto called the Jefferson Glass Co. Ltd. of Toronto, which produced the same lines of glass as the Follansbee plant from 1912-1914.
After 1908, Jefferson sold many of its Steubenville opalescent glass moulds to the Northwood Glass Company. For this reason, quite a few of Jefferson's early opalescent glass patterns are familiar to carnival glass collectors: Vintage, Fine Cut & Roses, Meander and Ruffles & Rings are all Jefferson patterns used later on Northwood carnival glass. Many of Jefferson's vase patterns, however, vanished with company's relocation to West Virginia and never resurfaced in the carnival era. Jefferson's early opalescent vases thus tend to be quite distinctive and unlike anything that appeared later in a century of American glass production.
I have not spent a great deal of time on Jefferson Glass Company since their production of rose bowls is quite limited. However they did produce outstanding examples of opalescent glass.
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