Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Posts tagged ‘Cambridge Glass’

Guernsey County History Museum Dressed for Christmas

guernsey-county-museum

Explore the history of the area by visiting Guernsey County Museum.

All 17 rooms at the oldest frame home in Cambridge have been tastefully decorated with a touch of the Christmas season. The Guernsey County Museum enjoys having people stop by to wander through its vast collection. Curator Judy Clay will escort visitors through each decorated room and explain the history of many of the artifacts that are left on display for the holidays.

The museum, the former McCracken-McFarland home, was moved down North Eighth Street, a half block from the corner, to its current location in 1915. Outside the house, the yard has some interesting features. There is a 4′ tall National Trail mileage marker, and the original steps from the 1823 house.

Many of the older generation from the area will remember Mrs. McFarland, a Brown High School English teacher, and Mr. McFarland, the banker who always wore a carnation in his buttonhole.

guernsey-county-one-room-school

Volunteer Madelyn Joseph stands by the pot-bellied stove in the one-room school room.

Recent additions to the museum include a room from a one-room schoolhouse showing desks and books used at that time. At the back of the room stands the pot-bellied stove, which appeared in some form in every one-room school to keep the room somewhat warm on cold winter days. On special occasions, retired teachers will describe the lessons and activities that happened in a classroom where one teacher taught all eight grades.

open-house-guernsey-county-museum

Dave Adair tells the story of the difficult life of a coal miner.

Another added attraction is an entrance way to a coal mine. In the early 1900s throughout Guernsey County, over 5,000 people were employed in the mines. Here, Dave Adair, local historian, explains to groups the life of a coal miner and at this time of year presents “A Coal Miner’s Christmas”, telling how they celebrated Christmas with very little money. Most gifts were handmade or perhaps purchased at the company store – an orange or walnuts were special treats.

guernsey-county-curator

Museum Curator Judy Clay explains the beautiful table setting, which includes Cambridge Glass and a Tiffany lamp overhead.

The home has been expanded and updated through the years without destroying its 19th Century charm. Many remember the time when homes had two sitting rooms – one for the family and the other to use only for special guests. While this was the first house in the area to have gas heat, they still read by candle light. Throughout the museum, you will see beautiful pieces of Cambridge Glass and Universal Pottery, as these two companies provided an important means of earning a living during the early years of Guernsey County.

guernsey-co-museum-volunteers

Friendly volunteers at the museum prepare for visitors by decorating the tree and preparing to serve refreshments. 

The walls in the hallway are covered with pictures of people who have made a difference in the area…the Guernsey County Hall of Fame. These community leaders have all contributed something special to make this world a better place.

guernsey-county-ice-bike

The ice bike made travel possible in the winter with its sharp prongs in the back and sled-like runner in the front.

Every room upstairs had a special theme. The Military Room contained items from Civil War days to WWII. A small sewing room held a spinning wheel and a weasel, which when it got filled with thread – went pop! That was the basis of the song, “Pop Goes the Weasel”. A dentist’s office, Dickens’ room, and rooms packed with antique ladies’ clothing finished off the top floor. The waistline on some of those dresses seems unbelievably small.

guernsey-county-mail-cart

This old mail cart actually carried mail from Cambridge’s Union Depot to the post office.

Bountiful treasures reside inside this old frame house. Perhaps you would like to roam the halls and revive some old memories. If you have any pieces of history you would care to share, please contact the museum. Every small town should take pride in having a special place to keep the history of their area alive for future generations.

guernsey-county-christmas-tree

The angel topped Christmas tree is decorated with old ornaments trimmed with lace.

Holiday hours for the Guernsey County Museum are Tuesday and Thursday 4:00 – 8:00, and Saturday from 10:00 -8:00.  Admission is $5 per person. Come explore some old memories of days gone by.

The Guernsey County Museum is located at 218 N Eighth Street off Steubenville Avenue in Cambridge, Ohio. It’s on the street directly behind the courthouse.

 

 

 

 

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Cambridge Glass Goes Hollywood

Hooray for Hollywood and Cambridge Glass!

Betty

Betty Sivard. a long time volunteer, tells visitors about Cambridge Glass used in Hollywood and on television.

It’s not surprising that the famous Cambridge Glass has been used in countless movies over the years as it exudes glamour as well as beauty. Several of these pieces are being featured in two large showcases  at the National Museum of Cambridge Glass  in Cambridge, Ohio, along with photos and cards designating the movies and stars.

Throughout the display of over 6,000 pieces of the collectible Cambridge Glass, other references to Hollywood movies and television shows appear frequently. A few years back a member spotted a piece of Cambridge Glass being used in a movie. After reporting this to the group, all eyes became focused on glassware used in movies. You’ll be surprised  at how often Cambridge Glass appears.

Elvis Presley

This beverage set was used on Elvis Presley’s plane, The Lisa Marie, which was named after his daughter.

This locally made fine glassware isn’t seen only in older movies. Recently, The Astronaut Wives Club toasted a special moment with Cambridge Rose Point Stemware. In the current series, Empire, stars used an Amethyst Decanter and Sherries.

White Christmas

Bing Crosby holds an engraved Bexley champagne glass in White Christmas. It’s a museum favorite!

It’s impressive to think that local men and women had a hand in producing exquisite glass items that are fine enough quality to be used in Hollywood and television. A favorite on display shows  Bing Crosby holding an engraved Bexley champagne glass in the year-after-year favorite of White Christmas.

Cambridge Glass Hollywood Stars

When group tours request a Hollywood program, these volunteers represent White Christmas (Cindy Arent), Astronaut Wives Club (Sandi Rohrbough), Mae West (Sharon Bachna), and Gunsmoke (Sarah Carpenter).

If you are interesting in the Hollywood presence of Cambridge Glass, arrangements can be made by tour groups to have volunteers entertain in costume and even break into song. Groups might hear The Haynes Sisters sing, “Sisters, sisters, there were never such devoted sisters…”  Or meet Mae West as she flings her boa and entertains the crowd.

The museum has created a DVD showing some of the movies as well as the Cambridge Glass used, so you know what to look for throughout the museum. The volunteers will then serve as your guides for your stay at the museum.

The Sting

On each end of the bar, The Sting used a Crown Tuscan Flying Lady Bowl filled with peanuts.

These guides not only know their glassware well, but they tell interesting stories along the way. An example would be the story of the Crown Tuscan Flying Lady Bowl used in The Sting.

In the early days of Cambridge Glass Co, a circus came to town. Several of the glassworkers attended the event. One of those had artistic talents and drew a picture of the trapeze artist performing that day. That picture was taken back to a talented mold maker, who developed this artistic Flying Lady Bowl. What talented men!

Even the western television shows used Cambridge Glass for a touch of glamour. In an episode of Gunsmoke, a little girl was casting her eyes on an etched Portia Doulton water pitcher. The Wild Wild West used a Cambridge Glass perfume atomizer as part of its background.

Clark Gable

This beautiful Royal Blue Luncheon Set was a wedding gift to Clark Gable and Carole Lombard.

A personal favorite was the Cambridge Royal Blue and Crystal luncheon set that Clark Gable and Carole Lombard received as a wedding present from a friend in Ft. Wayne, Indiana back in 1939. Nice to know the stars actually used this fine glassware in their homes as well as in the movies.

Prizzi's Honor

This eye-catching Royal Blue pitcher with silver overlay was used in Prizzi’s Honor.

While there are too many to list in this short article, a few favorites have been mentioned. Perhaps they will give you a desire to search out more Hollywood appearances throughout the museum yourself.

You’ll be impressed.

The National Museum of Cambridge Glass is located at 136 S. 9th Street just a half block off Wheeling Avenue in downtown Cambridge, Ohio.

 

 

 

 

Cambridge Glass Collectors Show “Ebony and Ivory

Gold embossed Ebony

Gold embossed Ebony with Ivory above

“Ebony & Ivory” served as the theme for the National Cambridge Collectors Club Convention in 2015.  Each year, collectors of Cambridge Glass meet to display and sometimes sell, parts of their collections. People come great distances to participate in this event. California, Florida, South Carolina, and Minnesota were a few of the places mentioned as vendors were visited throughout the displays.

Les Hanson presented the opening night program of

Les Hanson presented the opening night program of “Ebony & Ivory”.

From St. Paul, Minnesota, Les Hanson discussed his favorite Cambridge Glass item – swans. Les has a collection of over 125 swans of all sizes, styles and color combinations. They seemed to be his pride and joy. But he also collected, in order of preference, hand painted enamel on crystal, ebony, and decorated nude stems.

When asked how he got interested in Cambridge Glass, Les smiled as he thought back. For some reason, he always liked the beauty of swans. When at a glass show with a friend many years ago, they saw a beautiful green Cambridge Glass swan, which wasn’t very high priced. His friend bought him the swan for a birthday present. Turns out the reason it wasn’t high priced was because it was chipped. Les learned two lessons that day: 1) he was hooked on Cambridge Glass, and 2) chipped glass takes values down rapidly.

Sneaking in one of my favorites from the show - Cranberry Opalescent Coin Dot.

Sneaking in one of my favorites from the show – Cranberry Opalescent Coin Dot.  This show provides a great variety of collections from various glass manufacturers. This collection happens to be Fenton.

One gentleman. whose name eludes me, had an extensive collection of cream and sugar sets. Someone from Cambridge contacted him about attending the glass show years ago and he has been there ever since. At his peak, he had 480 cream and sugar sets. He was formerly a helicopter pilot for the Air Force and the helicopter he flew is now being restored in the Fort Worth Vintage Flying Museum. He said that this show has, “the best Cambridge glass for sale anyplace in the United States.” If anyone knows his name, please let me know.

Autley and Kathy Newton were the new kids on the block at this year's show.

Autley and Kathy Newton were the new kids on the block at this year’s show.

From Hammond, California, Autley and Kathy Newton displayed for the first year ever. They were the newbies at the show and had not only Cambridge Glass but treasured pieces of other glass lines as well as some beautiful pottery pieces. They said that Rick Jones had seen their display at another show and invited them to Cambridge.

Lynn Welker, Mr Cambridge, displayed part of his cordial collection.

Lynn Welker, Mr Cambridge, displayed part of his cordial collection.

Of course, no show of Cambridge Glass would be complete without the presence of Mr. Cambridge, Lynn Welker, from nearby New Concord. Lynn has an extensive collection of over 11,000 pieces of Cambridge Glass. Cordials are his favorite because they are small and easy to move around, yet delicate and beautiful.

Lynn has been interested in glass all his life as his mother had an antique shop in New Concord and Lynn spent many hours at the store. He bought a glass bottle at an auction at the age of nine and has been hooked ever since. For sixty-one years, his vacations and adventures involve trade shows and museums. No wonder he is called Mr. Cambridge.

Doug shares his top quality glassware, but friendships are what keep him coming back.

Doug shares his top quality glassware, but friendships are what keep him coming back.

From Minnesota, Doug Ingraham, who has been collecting for forty-two years, is said to have “the best of the best”. This all began when his grandmother left him a collection of Cambridge Glass. Someplace he met Elizabeth Moe and she told him, “If you want to know about Cambridge Glass, join the collectors.”

Doug said that while the glass is beautiful, “What keeps me coming back are the friendships.”

The Cambridge Glass Museum Sparkles with Memories

Picture of the original Cambridge Glass Company in 1909

Picture of the original Cambridge Glass Company in 1909

Stepping inside the National Museum of Cambridge Glass in Cambridge, Ohio makes former employees and their families feel a great sense of pride in the fine work displayed within its walls. Visitor after visitor marvels at the fine workmanship that has stood the test of time. Over 6,000 pieces of the finest glass in the world are on display.

Original finishing bench from Cambridge Glass. Dad could have sat here.

Volunteers Cindy, Gary, and Sandi demonstrate making glass around an original finishing bench from Cambridge Glass. Dad might have sat on that bench.

My thoughts always turn to Dad and Mom when I enter its doors. Working at Cambridge Glass Co. for over thirty years, my dad, Rudy Wencek, learned to do many different jobs: carrying-in boy, presser, finisher, and blower. Mom, known as Kate to her friends, only worked there a few years in the packing department.

Two of Dad's turncards show he was finisher, the item being made, and amount paid.

Two of Dad’s turncards show he was finisher, the item being made, and amount paid.

All of the employees remember it being a great place to work. Since times were tough during many of those years, the company provided a factory restaurant, where employees could get an economical meal and have it deducted from their pay.  They also were able to get coal to heat their homes at a reduced rate from Cambridge Glass’s Near Cut Coal Mine. Insurance was even provided for their employees.

Our long driveway was covered, not with gravel, but with ashes from the furnaces of Cambridge Glass. Many recall employees’ sidewalks and driveways having a coating of Cambridge Glass ash.

These popular Georgian tumblers were used daily at my parents'home.

These popular Georgian tumblers were used daily at my parents’ home.

When the plant closed in 1958, glass enthusiasts wanted to preserve its history, so in 1983 they opened the first National Museum of Cambridge Glass. Today their museum is on 9th Street just off Wheeling Avenue in downtown Cambridge.

These marbles from Christensen Agate Co. were made from Cambridge cullet glass.

These marbles from Christensen Agate Co. were made from Cambridge cullet.

This past year they have created two new displays that are fascinating. One involves marbles. The Christensen Agate Co. made “the world’s most perfectly formed marbles.” They were located right behind the Cambridge Glass Company. To make the beautiful colors in their marbles, they used Cambridge Glass Company’s broken or waste glass called cullet, which they remelted to form the marbles..

This display shows some of the Cambridge Glass used in movies or television shows.

This display shows some of the Cambridge Glass used in movies or television shows.

A larger display is called Hollywood Glass. Here you can spot Cambridge Glass pieces that have actually been used in movies and television shows. It’s quite impressive to realize that the things made in this small town are considered fine enough quality to be used in such manner as: a wine glass in White Christmas, an etched pitcher in Gunsmoke, a funnel on Hawaii Five-O, plus many more.

School and bus groups frequently tour the museum. Beginning with a short video actually filmed at the Cambridge Glass Company in the 1940s, visitors are then given a quiz regarding the video. Those with the correct answers are dressed in working gear as the process is reviewed.

Students enjoy using the etching plates.

Students enjoy using the etching plates.

Another aspect that greatly interests adults and students happens in the etching department. Here they are given actual Cambridge Glass etching plates, for such patterns as Rose Point, Dragon, or Chantilly, and can see the patterns emerge on a paper trail rather than glass. Of course, beautiful, etched glass creations are visible throughout the museum.

Hopefully, someday you will take the time to see these pieces of glass artwork made by friends and family right here in Guernsey County. Dad and his co-workers should feel great pride in the beautiful gems they have created. Part of them lives on in their handiwork.

The National Museum of Cambridge Glass is located in Cambridge, Ohio at 136 S 9th Street, just a half block off its main street, Wheeling Avenue – also called old Route 40. Admission is a reasonable $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, and children under 12 are admitted free.

Discover Local History at Guernsey County Historical Museum

Guernsey County Historical Museum

Guernsey County Historical Museum

Located in the oldest frame house in Cambridge, the Guernsey County Historical Museum, expanding since 1963, presents a vast array of memorabilia from by-gone years. The new curator, Judy Clay, gave a very knowledgeable tour of the museum from top to bottom, and is constantly reorganizing displays.

Built in 1823, what is known as the McCracken – McFarland House sat on the corner of Steubenville Avenue and 8th Street.  Then in 1915, the house was moved down the block and turned on its foundation. The red stained glass in the front door is original, having been moved without damage.  Outside the house the yard has some interesting features. There is a 4′ tall National Trail mileage marker, and the original steps from the 1823 house. Since the house is so old, you might think there would be spirits wandering its halls, but not so say those who work there. It is the quietest old house imaginable and nothing unusual happens there…at least not yet!

Bridge crossing Wills Creek

Bridge crossing Wills Creek – today replaced by the viaduct.

An interesting sidenote is that this house was actually part of the Underground Railroad and the McCracken family was active in helping the slaves move to safety. Today you will find a replica of the wooden, covered, two-lane bridge that crossed Wills Creek stored in the basement, where most likely slaves were hidden years ago.

At that time, homes had two sitting rooms.  One was for family use, while the other was a formal parlor used only when special guests arrived. A beautiful marbletop table that had belonged to the McFarland family has a place of honor in the formal parlor. Pieces of Cambridge Glass and Universal Pottery are scattered throughout the house, as these were two important means of earning a living during those early years in Guernsey County..

Guernsey County Hall of Fame Wall

Guernsey County Hall of Fame.

Ice Bicycle

Ice Bicycle

The beautiful family sitting room felt cozy in its time, as this was the first house in Cambridge to be heated with gas; however, candle light was still used for reading. The walls in the hallway are covered with pictures of people who have made a difference in the area…the Guernsey County Hall of Fame.

The Tool Room contained an old mail cart and an ice bike. The mail cart was actually used by the Cambridge Post Office to pick up mail from the Cambridge Train Station. Among other items was a cigar press from the Quaker City Company that made cigars.

Every room upstairs had a special theme. The Military Room contained items from Civil War days to WWII. A small sewing room held a spinning wheel and a weasel, which when it got filled with thread – went pop! That was the basis of the song, “Pop Goes the Weasel”. A dentist’s office, Dickens’ room, and rooms packed with antique ladies clothes finished off the top floor.

Old One-room school

Old One-room school

The One-Room School display contained traditional desks, teacher’s desk, blackboard, and some of those old books that were used long ago. On special occassions, retired teachers will describe basic lessons and activities in a one room school.

Bountiful treasures reside inside this old frame house. Perhaps you would like to roam the halls and revive some old memories. If you have any pieces of history you would care to share, please contact the museum. Every small town should take pride in having a special place to keep the history of their area alive for future generations.

Guernsey County Museum is located in Cambridge, Ohio near the crossroads of I-70 and I-77. The easiest route is from I-70, Exit 178, which is State Route 209 West. Follow 209 straight to the Court House. Make a left hand turn and a quick right turn on 8th Street right beside the Court House. After one block, make a right hand turn and a quick left turn on 8th Street again. The Museum is located just a few doors down on the right hand side at 218 N. 8th Street. 

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