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It’s all crystal clear

History of America shown through glass

July 7, 2012
By Casey Houser Special to The Inter-Mountain , The Inter-Mountain

There are more than 11,000 pieces of glassware contained within the American Museum of Glass.

The remnants of a once-booming glassmaking industry are now packed together in downtown Weston, where collectors, aficionados and tourists alike come to see a bit of American history.

Visitors are able to see a number of bookends, jars, plates, bowls, tumblers and artistic glass sculptures, among many other pieces.

Article Photos

The Inter-Mountain photos by Melissa Toothman
Visitors to the American Museum of Glass in Weston will find more than 11,000 pieces of glassware to view, with everything from bookends, jars, plates, bowls, tumblers, plates and artistic glass sculptures in a range of colors, shapes and sizes.

"Anyone who walks in can get a tour," said Sharon Pickens of the museum.

Staff members will personally walk an individual or group through the location, pointing out the different styles of glassware and illuminating the stories behind the most impressive designs. Tourists and collectors come from across the United States to view, donate and purchase the glassware.

The wares collected within the museum date back to the 1800s. Many pieces were made by major manufacturers, such as Viking and Fostoria.

However, units created by individuals are also a common sight. The collection sports items from across the United States.

A few pieces that are unique to the American Museum of Glass are glass fly traps and whale oil lamps, with the latter being created around 1800. The museum also has a large collection of paperweights, marbles and a set of covered jars that were made in nearby Milton.

In addition to the glass, the museum contains more than 1,500 books of archival information, which is useful for identifying where a specific piece originated. Often, it is possible for individuals to trace back family ties to glassmakers within the archives.

The museum offers a membership, which includes a quarterly magazine and store discounts. Benefits for members become more extensive at each level, ranging from $25 to $100 a year.

More information can be found at or by calling 304-269-5006.



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