New for 1939

by Mark A. Nye
Issue No. 337 - May 2001

This month three letters are presented, one dealing with a novel use of an old item and the others, announcements of new listings in the Cambridge line. We begin with a Circular Letter issued June 21, 1937

To All Agents:

We have just recently discovered a new use for Hollow Stem Saucer Champagnes. This use is for Fruit Salad.

Fill the bowl with a nice fruit salad and then pour over the salad a little grenadine, raspberry, cherry or any bright colored juice. This, of course, goes down into the Hollow Stem and makes a most beautiful piece on the table.

We believe if you promote this idea to your customers, you will find that they will be able to sell a great many Hollow Stem Champagnes.

To those representatives who have a sample room, we would suggest that you have one of these fixed up by one of the concerns who make displays for restaurants and soda fountains out of artificial fruit.

For your own satisfaction, simply get your wife to make up a fruit salad in a Hollow Stem Champagne, then write and tell us just what you think of the idea.

If any reader would like to try this and then write and tell us what you think of the idea and your letter will be published in the Crystal Ball. It doesn't have to be a Cambridge piece (although that would be nice) since most, if not all hollow stem champagnes are basically the same. It would be interesting to know, but we never will, what the Cambridge Sales Force thought of this use for hollow champagnes as well as did it actually increase the sales for this item.

June 1939 saw the introduction of the #97 Cocktail Shaker as announced in this letter sent out on the last day of the month.

To All Agents:

There has been quite a demand for a small Cocktail Shaker, one in which two or three cocktails can be made up. We have made such a Shaker and sample is being sent to you.

This is known as the #97 Cocktail Shaker with patented top and will be furnished plain at a price of $18.75 per dozen list, while the etched price will be $26.25 per dozen list.

This will be furnished in the seven popular etchings: Rose Point, Wildflower, Chantilly, Blossom Time, Portia, Diane, and Elaine.

These prices are subject to the usual disclosure.

The #97 was described in the 1940 price list as having a capacity of 12 ounces, while the much larger #98 cocktail shaker held 46 ounces and was available etched Candlelight as well as the other etchings.

Earlier in the year, January 27, 1939 to be exact, the following announcement was distributed.

To All Agents:

The molds have now been completed on the New Martha 478 Ftd. Punch Bowl and 488 Punch Cup.

We are very much pleased with this new Punch Set. It has a good capacity, holding 10 quarts or 2½ gallons.

The numbers are shown on page 3 of Martha Line. Complete the descriptions and add the prices as follows:

Item Description Plain E/Chantilly or
E/Blossom Time
  Per Doz. Per Doz.
478 15 in. Punch Bowl, Ftd.
(Capacity 10 quarts)
75.00 150.00
488 5 oz Punch cup 4.50 10.00
14 pc Punch Set (per set)
12.00 23.75

Also add this set to your Punch Set price list, page 3 of C/L #67, dated 8/25/38.

Samples will not be sent unless you ask for them.

P-S. In addition to Etched Chantilly and Blossom Time, this set will also be furnished in Wildflower and Rose Point. Etchings at prices shown above.

The original typed letter listed the 485 ladle as part of the set. On the surviving copy, this had been crossed out and 1402 handwritten in. In retyping the letter for this article, I took the liberty of adding the full description of the ladle which appeared on a May 1939 Martha price list.

Note that this announcement of the Martha punch set does not include the underplate. a Martha line price list was issued in late May 1939 and on it was the 129 18 inch plate or punch set tray. Later in he same price list, two punch sets were offered - one with the tray and one without. Both sets included the Tally Ho punch ladle. Addition of the plate increased the list price for each set plain, not etched, from $12.00 to $16.25, a 33% increase. For an etched set, the price went from $23.75 to $31.25 per set. This was an expensive set for its day and no doubt is one of the main reasons so few are seen today.

The illustrations (below) of the Martha Punch set and the #97 cocktail shaker come from the 1940 Cambridge catalog. They have been converted into positive images and combined with the hollow stem champagne illustrations to form the partial "catalog" page printed with this article. This page IS NOT an authentic Cambridge catalog page. These items never appeared together on the same page.