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Imperial Glass - Part 1
No. 410 Cracker Jar from 1909 Imperial Factory Catalog
No. 410 Cracker Jar from 1909 Imperial Factory Catalog.
NOTE single row of diamond cuts on finial.

CRACKER JAR: Although fact eludes and distorts belief in some areas for many years,  our former belief that this pattern had always been accredited to Cambridge manufacture, was negated in 1995. A collector traveling in New Orleans,  stepped into a shop having separate sheets of an old 1909 Imperial Catalog thumb-tacked to the walls, with a separate price for each sheet! Quickly realizing its impact, the man bargained for all the sheets in a remarkable transaction. He approached John Britt with the “find”. John and Lucile loaned us the sheets for making a book, similar to the Butler Bros. Reprints. We made and sold some copies, returning the originals to the Britts, who, in turn, created more spiral bound copies to sell.

On page 25 of this catalog, is the featured cracker jar, listed as Imperial #410-in the crystal version.

Although the basic pattern on the base of the jar appears to be the same as that shown on the FORKS cracker jar attributed to Cambridge manufacture, you will notice that the finial on the #410 has only one row of diamond facets, whereas #2696 “ NEARCUT” FORKS jar made by Cambridge sports a dual row of cuts on the finial!  We ask you to check into this matter in the Cambridge- Part V segment on this site.

Fall 1908 Butler Bros. Ad-Cracker Jar #410-Imperial Design
Fall 1908 Butler Bros. Ad-Cracker Jar #410-Imperial Design

BUTLER BROTHERS AD: Near-cut is a term used by any of the manufacturers who produced incised patterns. NEARCUT is a trademark name used by Cambridge Glass Co.  We should not confuse the meaning of the two words.  In company with the #410 Cracker Jar, you will note other recognized carnival patterns such as Diamond Lace.

HOBSTAR cookie jar
HOBSTAR cookie or cracker jar

HOBSTAR: Having been produced in non-iridized crystal, more than 60 different shapes were made. Carnival glass pieces began to appear in wholesale catalogs about 1912, with more limited shapes available. The pattern is found in purple and marigold cookie jars, marigold milk jar, punch bowl and base in marigold and green, with cups in those colors, a stemmed compote, a pickle castor in a silver-plated holder and bride's bowl in marigold, anchored in a silver-plated metal holder. Table sets are quite attractive in marigold, purple and emerald.  A berry set having 5” and 10” bowls is known in marigold and purple.


LIGHTNING FLOWER NAPPY: This photo is of one of the first two of  these nappies ever found.  Fred Roque of CA brought it to a Club meeting in the early `90s, for assessment and appreciation by everyone there! Dean took the picture at that time. Close examination reveals it to be the Pansy nappy,  with clearly displayed  interior design. Instead of the customary Quilted Diamond exterior mold used on the Pansy nappies, this Lightning Flower mold with its “lightning bolt” design was used for the few marigold nappies known in this pattern.

A bowl, having no interior pattern, is known to exist, as well. Rose Presznick's book 3, page 125 shows this pattern and lists a 9” plate and a  5 ½” compote in various colors, but their existence had not been verified until Oct 17, 2004.  A marigold 7” ruffled bowl, having the Lightning Flower pattern on the exterior, a smooth interior, clearly displaying the Northwood N in the center, appeared for sale on Ebay.  We will be displaying and discussing it in a later Northwood segment.

John Britt's articles in HOACGA Educational Series #1 compares the Lightning Flower design to Daisy Dear, Single Flower, and Caroline, all Dugan patterns.
“Lightning Flower/Pansy nappy is approximately the same size as the Imperial Pansy nappy. The color is marigold. There is a tree bark handle, with the Pansy pattern on the interior. The exterior holds the “Lightning Flower” pattern. The base has raised rays and a raised button center. There is NO (N) found on the base or anywhere else on this piece.”


PANSY NAPPY: Viewing this nappy offers an example of the inter-change-ability from this QUILTED DIAMOND exterior to the LIGHTNING FLOWER mold in order to create an entirely different approach to new marketing possibilities for Imperial.
HEAVY DIAMOND Sugar-3 in. tall with a 3 in. opening.
Heavy Diamond Sugar and Creamer

HEAVY DIAMOND  Creamer : and sugar in breakfast size,  juice size tumbler, rose bowl, 9” candlesticks, and a  compote are known in marigold and clambroth. Two types of vase: pedestal-footed, 8”-9” is found in marigold , clambroth, green,  and smoke. It is shown in an old Imperial catalog. The cylindrical 12” vase is known in marigold, and was recorded for the first time in the Carl O. Burns Imperial Carnival Glass book of 1996. 10” marigold bowls are found in this pattern. Other yet unfound shapes may exist. As Don Moore stated years ago, this pattern will never win any beauty contests, nor attain the monetary value of some other pieces. However, the pattern and shapes deserve notice and a place in collecting. Certainly all of us do not enjoy the same patterns! However you react to it, Heavy Diamond is interesting and in  the rare category.

HEAVY DIAMOND Sugar: is the breakfast size at 3” tall and having an opening of 3”. Needless to say, this set is very difficult to put together.

HEAVY DIAMOND  5 in. nappy as seen in the Imperial Museum-4-15-04
HEAVY DIAMOND  5 in. nappy as seen in the Imperial Museum-4-15-04

HEAVY DIAMOND Nappy:  Listed in Imperial catalogs as #699, called Mount Vernon, when manufactured in thirty-four different shapes of non-iridized crystal, the few examples known in carnival came onto the scene late in the era. In fact, we were quite surprised to find this 5” marigold handled nappy sitting in the Imperial Museum, when we visited in April 2004.  This is a shape, not previously accounted for and shown here for the first time in carnival glass circles,  we believe.


LITTLE BARREL:  Your first inclination might be: this is a specialty item. Since these unique little novelty items have been found with business labels attached, there is little doubt that they were special order items for customers who desired to advertise their tavern. Whether or not an alcoholic bottling firm ordered these containers to use as premiums is not known. The little barrels do not appear in any of the old wholesale glass catalogs. Marigold examples are more prevalent, if indeed, any of these could be considered readily available. Helios examples are considerably harder to locate, but do not seem to be as valuable or desirable as the smoke examples.

SIX-SIDED Candlestick in Helios with a Frosted Block plate in background-taken inside the Imperial Museum-4-15-04
SIX-SIDED Candlestick in Helios with a Frosted Block plate in background.
Taken inside the Imperial Museum-4-15-04.

SIX-SIDED CANDLESTICKS:  The green candlestick shown here, is displayed in the Imperial Museum with (a clambroth Frosted Block plate sitting behind it). Imperial produced greater variety in carnival glass candlesticks than any of their competitors. These 7 ½” Six-Sided variety are among the more desirable. A purple set is mind-boggling! Even marigold is very scarce, with helios and smoke running a close second. You are indeed fortunate if you have any of these in your collection. They are among the most desirable of  all the candlesticks from Imperial manufacture.

FLUTE & CANE-7 in. bowl
FLUTE & CANE as seen in Imperial Catalog # 104A
FLUTE & CANE-7 in. bowl
FLUTE & CANE as seen in Imperial Catalog # 104A

FLUTE and CANE:  While this 7” bowl is not considered scarce, the square shape is somewhat unusual. The real beauty of it: ample appreciation can be obtained from this shape because it displays the lovely swirl design within the marie (collar base). Appreciation for the designs of pattern, goes hand-in-hand with collecting old carnival glass. The only color known in this pattern is marigold, and all other shapes listed can be considered scarce to extremely so. Basically, a simple design, there certainly is an elegance surrounding any pattern having the caned effect we believe. (Scarce): water pitcher-8 ½”, milk pitcher-5 ¾”, stemmed sherbet, stemmed goblet, compote; (very scarce); 6” plate, breakfast creamer/sugar;  ( rare):stemmed champagne, stemmed wine, (extremely rare): 9 oz. tumbler, 12 oz. tumbler, cup and saucer, stemmed cordial.

9 in. SMOOTH PANELS.-marigold over milk glass
9 in. SMOOTH PANELS.-marigold over milk glass.

SMOOTH  PANELS: (mgld. overlay) This pattern differs from the Flute pattern in two respects. The panels on Flute are slightly concave, and are on the exterior surface. The panels on Smooth Panels are slightly convex and appear on the interior surface. These vases will vary, on average, from 6” to as much as 12”, with most examples found in the 7”-9” range. The shorter 4”-5” sizes are seldom found in any color!  A tiny rose bowl shape from the same mold as the 4”-5” vases is known, as well. It measures 2 ¾” tall, having a diameter of 4 ¼”. Marigold  and clambroth are standard colors found. All other colors range from scarce to extremely rare. Smoke is probably most available, followed closely by purple. Marigold over milk or moonstone base glass, along with the smoke over milk or moonstone are very scarce. Teal vases are hard to locate. The true, red vases are nearly impossible. The little rose bowl is known only in marigold and clambroth.

Dean & Diane Fry-11/04

Why trade the hope of heaven's light
For things that please the prince of night?
Eternal glories wait for all
Who turn and trust God's loving call.”---Brannon

Should you care to contact the Frys, their email address is:

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