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I’m not really sure when my vintage glass ornament obsession started.
I think it was the bag of old glass ornaments that I found at a thrift store about 25 years ago. One of them was adorned with a hand-painted log cabin with mica smoke rising from the tiny chimney.
All un-silvered ornaments aren’t necessarily war-time. The company continued to produce them well into the 1950s. When the war finally ended in 1945, metal restrictions receded. Because they remained affordable for 1950’s families, a boxed set of a dozen sold for about 60 cents, these American-made ornaments flourished.It was a German immigrant, Max Eckardt, who realized that the war could interrupt his Christmas ornament import business.So in 1937, Eckardt and Bill Thompson, a store manager for F. Woolworth – who promised to place a huge order, convinced the Corning Glass Company to produce machine-blown glass balls.Sometimes they were decorated with mica “Snow-ish” stripes, Designs could be produced faster with stencils, unlike German and Polish ornaments which were always hand-painted, American Shiny Brites were quickly embellished with icicles, flowers, celestial images, nursery rhymes, nativity scenes and even holiday greetings…….Simple balls were the only ornaments available in 1940, and the following year production jumped to nearly 300,000 ornaments a day.
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(A typical German glassblower could only produce about 600 a day).