WV Studies Project
Mrs. Collin/Mrs. Staley
March 3, 1999
America’s first glass factory was built in 1608 at the Jamestown colony in Virginia. However, it was not until the establishment of Caspar Wistar’s glassworks in southern New Jersey in 1739 that America’s glass industry achieved its first successes. Wistar’s factory produced mainly window glass and bottles, though his workers also made other types of containers of some elegance.
West Virginia is losing yet another of its major and significant glass factories as Dalzell Viking has stopped production and is in the process of selling its molds, equipment and remaining inventory.
Glass has been produced at the same location since the late 1800’s when the New Martinsville Glass Company began operations. In 1943 the factory was purchased and renamed the Viking Glass Company. In 1985 the factory was purchased by Mr. Dalzell, an ex Fostoria Glass executive, and renamed Dalzell Viking.
Upon the news of the impending demise of the factory, members of the Museum board headed to New Martinsville to purchase some of the remaining inventory for the West Virginia Museum of American Glass, acquire papers and artifacts for the museum and to learn what information was available about the closing of the factory. It was learned that most of the inventory had been sold to warehouse consolidators, so the items that remained in the gift shop were truly the last vestige of a once great and thriving factory.
http://www.rth.org/wvmuseum/page13.html glass website
1) “Glass,” Collier’s Encyclopedia, 1971, Vol. 11, p. ___
2) Heuther, Anne, Glass and Man, J.B Lippincott Co., Philadelphia & New York, 1963
3) Six, Dean, Seneca Glass Company, Page-Frederiksen publishing Co., Greensboro, NC, 1995
4) Wm, J, Aull Jr., Sand, Fire, N’ Things, 1960
5) no author. Glass Making in West Virginia. online Available http://www.state.wv.us/tourism/glassfac/glassmak.htm
6) West Virginia Glass (pictures).online Available http://www.state.wv.us/tourism/glassfac/glassco.htm