The Fenton Art Glass Company
As Told by Rose presznick (1974)
In 1905, Frank L. Fenton and his brothers John W. and Charles H. founded the company at Martins Ferry, Ohio.
They found an abandoned building where they started their career in decorating blanks they bought from other glass companies in the Wheeling, Wellsburg and Bellaire area.
About 1906, John, Frank and Charles went to Williamstown, West Virigina and acquired their present location from a Mr. Henderson. This was as ideal site for the Baltimore and the Ohio Railroad was already located by the factory. The first glass was made by Fenton at Williamstown on January 2nd, 1907.
Glass history tells us that Jake Rosenthal and unnamed migrant glass maker worked out a method to produce iridescence glassware, known today as Carnival Glass.
The company made carmel slag, agate and many other types of art glass under the guidance of "Uncle Jake" as most of the glass workers called Mr. Rosenthal. They also made golden iridescence, opalescence in blue, yellow and green. They produced ruby and beautiful crystal in the following years.
Later James and Robert Fenton affiliated with the fast growing company. John went to Millersburg, Ohio, looking over facilities there for a glass factory of his own. He left Williamstown in 1909, folled by his brother Robert.
By 1908, the Fenton Company had introduced its now famous Carnival Glass. This was produced in abundance until 1921.
Frank Fenton, Sr., died at the age of 68 in 1946, after having managed the building and expanding company for forty-three years. His eldest son, Frank M. Fenton, took over the reigns of Fenton Art Glass Company as president, his brother Wilmer be came vice president soon after their father's death.
The company has expanded and today is one of the largest glass companies now in existence in the United States.
Fenton Art Glass is known all over the world for its beauty and is made today much like the workers of Jake Rosenthal and Frank Fenton, Sr., and his brothers made it almost seventy years ago.
It is a privilege and wonderful experience to go on a glass tour at Fenton and see the workers ply their trade and I understand many of the workers are relatives of early glass makers that helped to build this wonderful company, doing the work as their grandfathers, fathers and uncles did in an era long past. Their heritage lives on.
I thought this was a perfect short story about Fenton Glass Company, there is just to much information and history about this company. Fenton is still producing glass in a variety of colored and carnival collectable glass.
If you want more information there are books as well as clubs that specialize in the Fenton Glass. Look under books for sale and our club directory. Plus you can visit the Fenton Glass Factory on line.
Below is a history of Markings and Logos:
Articles about Fenton Glass
Here you will find articles on rarities or hard to find glass made by Fenton Art Glass Company.
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