What's It Worth? by Leslie Hindman

Steuben Glass: A Clear Reputation

The item you see pictured here is a Steuben vase model 7913 belonging to one of our wonderful readers. It was designed in 1942 by George Thompson, a long time senior staff designer at Steuben who worked at the firm from 1936 to 1974.
    Steuben Glass Works has an interesting history as the maker of some of the purest crystal in the world.
    The company was founded in 1903 by Thomas Hawkes, a glass engraver, and Frederic Carder, an English glassmaker specializing in Art Nouveau glass. Carder studied the intricacies and potentials of glass work obsessively throughout his career. The company operated independently until 1913 when it was acquired by Corning Incorporated.
Corning Incorporated was a manufacturer of optical glass. Carder stayed on board with Steuben even through the acquisition as managing director. In 1932, a technological breakthrough resulted in a new glass formula that had such high refractive quality that it permitted the entire spectrum of a light wave (including ultraviolet light) to pass through it. The formula was presented to Corning Incorporated, but due to its purity and clarity, it was rejected by the parent company because it was not ideal for the optical glass they manufactured. It was, however, ideal for the company's artistic design division. The new crystal formula catapulted Steuben to the pinnacle of the crystal design industry, and it is the same formula still used in Steuben glass today.

This piece belonging to our reader is similar to ones sold at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers in the past. These similar vases have sold for around $200, but due to the fact that our reader's vase has been monogrammed, its value would be estimated at about half.



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1 Comment

Steuben said:

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Thank you so much for posting about this piece of Steuben Glass. We hope your reader enjoys this beautiful piece.

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