Warning message

Advance tickets required. Face coverings are required for all visitors, even if vaccinated. Learn more.

All About Glass

All About Glass

This is your resource for exploring various topics in glass: delve deeper with this collection of articles, multimedia, and virtual books all about glass. Content is frequently added to the area, so check back for new items. If you have a topic you'd like to see covered, send us your suggestion. If you have a specific question, Ask a Glass Question at our Rakow Research Library.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint Glass: From the Gilded Age to the Roaring Twenties (Revised)
Video

Mt. Washington and its successor, the Pairpoint Corporation, was one of America's longest-running luxury glass companies (1837-1957), one that rivaled its better known contemporaries, Tiffany and Steuben. It constantly reinvented and re-invigorated its business through creativity in texture,

Twist Glass
Video

In the 1930s, the Pairpoint Glass Corporation introduced a bold new design called "twist glass," consisting of swirled stripes of ruby or deep blue glass and clear crystal. The complicated technique, already used in Sweden, required many stages including cold working. Watch as William

Sicilian Glass
Video

In the second half of the 19th century, many glass firms used experimental techniques to create decorative art glass. In 1878, the Mt. Washington glass company introduced Sicilian glass. As part of their marketing, the company claimed to have used lava, that is, molten rock spewed out by volcanoes,

Reticello
Video

Watch as William Gudenrath demonstrates the Reticello technique. Reticello (Italian, "glass with a small network"), is a type of blown glass made with canes organized in a crisscross pattern to form a fine net, which may contain tiny air traps.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Cut Rose Globe
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1889–1900 Glass, blown, cut, ground, polished Overall H: 14.9 cm, Diam (max): 17.9 cm (2007.4.60) The cut glass pattern used for this bowl was patented on March 12, 1889, by Frederick Shirley, the Englishman who was the manager of Mt.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint Glass
Article

Mt. Washington and its successor, the Pairpoint Corporation, was one of America’s longest-running luxury glass companies (1837-1957), one that rivaled its better known contemporaries, Tiffany and Steuben. It constantly reinvented and re-invigorated its business through creativity in texture,

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: 1890: Ad for Art Glass
Audio

Advertisement for Mt. Washington: Rich cut and decorated wares, including Royal Flemish and Albertine decoration, from the November 1890 issue of The Jewelers Circular and Horological Review. Mt. Washington advertised itself as the “Headquarters for Art Glass in America” in 1889 and into the 1890s.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Lava Vase
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1878–1880 Glass, blown, enameled H: 20.4 cm, D (max.): 15.6 cm (76.4.17) The first Art Glass made by Mt. Washington (or any American company, as far as we know) was called Sicilian because it was supposed to contain volcanic lava from Mt.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Burmese Lamp
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA About 1885–1895 Glass, metal; blown, enameled, mounted, decorated Overall H: 48.5 cm (79.4.91) The most popular Art Glass made by Mt. Washington, in production from 1885 until 1895, was Burmese glass. This opalescent glass shaded from pink

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Decorated Peachblow Footed Vase
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1886–1890 Lead glass, enamel, gilding; blown, applied, enameled Overall H: 16.4 cm, W: 12 cm (2002.4.39) Peachblow glass, another Art Glass, was made contemporaneously with Burmese glass, though it had a different chemical composition and

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Royal Flemish Vase with Camel and Rider
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1893–1895 Glass and pigments Overall H: 32.9 cm, Diam (Max): 16.8 cm (L.40.4.2002) Another type of decorated glass made by Mt. Washington in the 1880s was called Royal Flemish glass. The decoration had nothing to do with the province of

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Royal Flemish Punch Bowl with Brownie Decoration
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1894–1896 Colorless glass, blown, enameled, gilded H: 34.4 cm, D: 40.7 cm (L.23.4.2011) One unusual decoration on Mt. Washington glass depicts Brownie figures. These figures were created by the author/illustrator Palmer Cox. Brownies were

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Cut Lamp with Silver Fittings
Audio

Pairpoint Manufacturing Co.; Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1880–1900 Glass, silver; blown, cut Overall H: 52.8 cm, W: 29.1 cm, Diam (max): 20.4 cm (2004.4.57) The Mt. Washington Glass Company produced cut glass from the middle of the 19th century; its exhibit at the

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Water Carafe, cut in Wheeler pattern
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company; Henry Wilde United States, New Bedford, MA about 1890–1910 Lead glass, blown and cut H: 20.9 cm, D: 15.3 cm (92.4.9) This water carafe is cut in the Wheeler pattern, which originated around 1885. This pattern was made until the turn of the century in a variety of

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Dish
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA About 1909–1930 Glass, blown, cut Overall H: 3.8 cm, Diam: 15.1 cm (L.100.4.2010) This and other Pairpoint Corporation floral patterns were popular. They were much simpler than the elaborate cut glass that had been in production since the 1880s.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Kerosene Lamp
Audio

Pairpoint Manufacturing Co. United States, New Bedford, MA About 1900–1903 Glass, enamel, gilding, metal; blown, enameled, gilt, assembled Overall H: 42.8 cm, Diam: 21.2 cm (L.251.4.2010) From the 1870s onward, lighting was a major product of Mt. Washington and, eventually, of the Pairpoint

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: “Puffy” Table Lamp
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA 1907 Lead glass, bronze; mold-blown, enameled H: 53.6 cm; (a) H: 44.2 cm, D: 26.2 cm; (b) H: 15.5 cm, D: 32 cm (92.4.15) After 1900, the Pairpoint Corporation greatly increased their production of lamps, most of which were electric after 1902.

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Butterfly Table Lamp
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA 1907–1925 Glass, metal, enamel, rubber; blown, tooled, enameled, acid-etched, assembled Overall H: 52.6 cm, Diam: 37.5 cm (2009.4.338) Pairpoint made electric lamps, like this one, with reverse-painted shades and a variety of metal bases from

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Electric Table Lamp
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA About 1915–1937 Glass, metal, fabric, paper, marble, electrical wiring/components; tooled and cast glass, assembled Overall H: 34.3 cm, W: 20.4 cm, D: 10.2 cm (L.124.4.2010) This candlestick lamp is one of a number of designs of electric

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Ambero Glass Vase
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA 1915–1916 Glass, metal, enamel; blown, tooled, acid-etched, enameled Overall H: 37 cm, Diam: 21.6 cm (2009.4.340) Ambero Art Glass is relatively rare because it was only made for two or three years. This glass was enameled on the inside surface

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Covered Engraved Dish
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA 1925–1937 Glass, blown, cased, applied, engraved Overall H: 20 cm, Diam: 24.2 cm (2009.4.93) In the 1920s, the Pairpoint Corporation made a variety of tableware, both colored and colorless, much of it with engraved and/or cut decoration. This

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Crown Milano Bowl on Stand
Audio

Mt. Washington Glass Company United States, New Bedford, MA 1891–1895 Glass, enamel; blown, enamel decoration Overall H: 25.4 cm, W (max): 45.5 cm, Bowl W: 20.8 cm (63.4.121) Crown Milano glass was another successful type of Mt. Washington’s Art Glass. This Crown Milano bowl sits on a Pairpoint

Mt. Washington and Pairpoint: Tazza
Audio

Pairpoint Corporation United States, New Bedford, MA 1925–1937 Lead glass, blown and engraved H: 21.9 cm, Diam (rim): 21.8 cm (75.4.49) Pairpoint’s Fine Arts Line was in production from 1925 until the company closed for the first time in 1937. Many pieces combine marble and silver mounts. Gift of