Archive for Sunday, August 25, 2002

Distinctive glassware recognizable

August 25, 2002


In 1894, a new glassware was patented. It had heavy, gold-relief designs on multicolored panels in brown and blue tones. Sometimes there were added enameled decorations of birds, animals or geometric patterns.

It was called Royal Flemish glass. The Mount Washington Glass Co. of New Bedford, Mass., made many unusually colored glasswares, but this was possibly the most elaborate and exotic.

This 20-inch Royal Flemish table lamp with Guba ducks flying in a
night sky sold this spring at Early Auction in New Milford, Ohio,
for $25,100. It was complete with matching shade.

This 20-inch Royal Flemish table lamp with Guba ducks flying in a night sky sold this spring at Early Auction in New Milford, Ohio, for $25,100. It was complete with matching shade.

Patterns were named Coin, Roman Head Medallions, Fish and Shell, Camel and Rider, Guba Ducks or Rampant Lions to help explain the designs to customers. The glassware is very expensive today.

It is almost never signed, but pieces are so distinctive that they are easy to recognize. Royal Flemish glass has not been reproduced because the method of manufacture would be so expensive today.

My father's old captain's chair has a faded label under the seat. The label reads "New Orleans Manufacturing Co." Can you tell us how old the chair is?

The company that made your father's chair worked in New Orleans from 1896 to 1929. The firm manufactured tables and chairs in revival styles.

I have an antique three-faced baby doll that's nearly 20 inches long. The doll's head and hands appear to be bisque, and the body is cloth. A knob on the top of the head protrudes through a hole in the doll's bonnet. If you turn the knob, the doll's head rotates to bring the desired face to the front. The faces show the doll sleeping, smiling and crying. The bonnet back covers the two unseen faces. She is dressed in a long, white, cotton-and-lace dress. I cannot find any markings on the doll. Can you estimate age and value?

Look closely for a mark on the doll's head or neck. That might tell you the maker. If the doll is old, it was probably made in Germany sometime between about 1890 and 1910. Various manufacturers made two- and three-faced dolls similar to yours. The best-known German makers were Carl Bergner, Max Frederick Schelhorn and Fritz Bartenstein. These dolls have been reproduced in recent years. If your doll is an old one and in excellent condition, it could sell for more than $2,000.

I cannot find any information about a set of dishes my mother-in-law bought in 1929. The plates have a burgundy border with gold trim. The center decal shows a large estate on a cliff, with people picnicking under a tree in the foreground. The mark reads "Sebring Pottery Co., U.S.A., Burgundy, Chateau France."

Frank A. Sebring and his partners bought a pottery in East Liverpool, Ohio, in 1887. Sebring moved the pottery to Mahoning County in 1898-'99, and called the town that grew around it "Sebring." The firm made a great variety of semiporcelain dinnerware. The decal on your dishes is called Chateau France. Sebring Pottery Co. continued to work until the early 1940s. The management team that ran Sebring also eventually controlled the American Limoges China Co. of Sebring and the Salem China Co. of Salem, Ohio. Similar patterns and shapes were made by the three potteries.

My berry-bowl set includes a large master bowl and six individual bowls. I cannot identify the mark on the back. It looks like a three-tiered beehive with an extra line on each side of the hive. Above the hive are the initials "L.S. & S." Below it are the words "Austria, Dicor Deposi."

The initials "L.S. & S." were used between about 1892 and 1924 by Lewis Straus & Sons, a New York importing company. The Straus firm owned a factory in Germany. It also imported pottery from Bohemia, which was part of the Austrian Empire until 1918. The French words "dicor deposi" can be translated as "design registered." So your berry-bowl set was probably made in Bohemia before 1918 and was imported by Lewis Straus & Sons.

The Kovels answer as many questions as possible through the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for its use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names and addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of any photograph, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The volume of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Lawrence Journal-World, King Features Syndicate, 888 Seventh Ave., New York, N.Y. 10019.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.