Today, the name Tiffany may mean leaded glass lamps or a jewelry store started by Charles Tiffany. But the name Tiffany is on many types of art. In 1893, Arthur Nash moved from England with his sons to work at the Tiffany Glass Works in Corona. Arthur developed many special types of glass for Tiffany, including the famous iridescent Favrile. The factory history gets complicated. Tiffany added a foundry, survived the rationing of the war years, and started making new designs for metal work in 1921 under Arthur’s son, A. Douglas Nash (1885-c.1940). And in 1928, Tiffany Furnaces became A. Douglas Nash Corp. Nash continued to make enameled metal pieces, including cigar boxes, picture frames, ashtrays and desk sets, in designs similar to but simpler than earlier Tiffany pieces. In 1932 the company closed, and A. Douglas Nash went to work for Libbey Glass and the Pittsburgh Glass Co. He died in 1940. Some pieces marked with the Nash company name are appearing at auctions and shops. A bronze box with a colorful enameled landscape set in the top was sold at a 2015 Skinner auction in Boston for $1,353, five times the estimate. Did the bidders know that Nash was the famous glassmaker who worked for Louis Comfort Tiffany? Or were they collectors of artistic 20th-century enameled metal, a collecting field that still is not well-known?
Q: I have a glass hatchet from the St. Louis World’s Fair. It’s 7ø inches long and has a picture of George Washington and “The Father of our Country” on one side of the blade and “World’s Fair, 1904” on the other side. What is it worth?
A: The first glass hatchets with Washington’s portrait were made by Libbey Glass Co. for the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. The words “Libbey Glass Co. Toledo, Ohio” are embossed on the handle. Your hatchet, made for the 1904 World’s Fair, doesn’t have the name of the company on the handle, so it probably was made by another manufacturer. At least five different glass hatchets were made as souvenirs for the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. Glass hatchets were made as souvenirs of several cities and events through the 1920s. Some have a person’s name engraved on the handle. Glass hatchets are often found for about $25-$35.
Tip: To remove the brown deposits found in old vinegar cruets, fill the cruets with diluted ammonia for a few hours, then rinse.
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