A Look Back In Time Part II

by Mark Nye
Issue No. 454 - January 2012

Woman's Club Lecture Builds New Business
Cambridge Glass Co. -- Stern Brothers Conduct Cooperative Lecture
Table Setting Meeting Before Edgewater, N.J. Woman's Club.
Sales Increase Noted.

"As a distinctly forward step to the education of the general buying public to an appreciation of china and glass as a part of the home, Cambridge Glass Company, through their New York representative, Oliver C. Graham, and in cooperation with Stern Bros. Department Store in New York – with china and glass buyer George Minard and his assistant John J. Gleason, Jr., conducted a lecture and table setting instruction before the Edgewater Woman's Club, September 20, at the Edgewater Public Library, New Jersey.

The lectures, dealing in general with the appreciation of glassware followed a regular business meeting of the Woman's Club at 8 P. M. Mr. Graham opened with a most interesting talk on the technical processes of the manufacture of glass, bringing in, also, its qualities of duty and its possibilities as decorative merchandise. Mr. Minard spoke on the merchandise available, in general, in this country today and pointed out the stylistic advantages of current merchandise and brought out the whole merchandising point of the very effective tie-up between Cambridge Glass Company and Stern Bros.

Mr. Gleason spoke chiefly on style, on the hundred and one possibilities for table arrangements, and pointed out to the audience of 150 enthusiastic women the wide realm of attractive tables possible in their own homes. The whole lecture, which proved to be an exceptionally effective merchandising scheme and, according to reports which followed, a great impetus to business in Stern Bros. department, was prompted and arranged by Mrs. Thomas C. Smith, of the Edgewater Woman's Club, which conducts periodic lectures of interest to women, in cooperation with Mr. Graham of the Cambridge Glass Company and Mr. Minard and Mr. Gleason.

Stores throughout the country have often given lectures either in the department or in some section of the store accompanied by table settings, etc., but it has been found that the smartest merchandising stunt, and the most frequently proven and strongest impetus to immediately increased sales, has been lectures and instructive talks on available merchandise before women's clubs, which at least partially sponsor them.

The table settings featured at the lecture carried Cambridge glassware exclusively, and included displays of all lines. The whole meeting consumed only an hour and a half and the lectures were carefully timed and planned to avoid dryness or any of the over-dose of technical information which so often spoils such meetings and invalidates their real purpose. Royal Doulton china was used in the formal settings which accompanied the lecture. The tables were not set entirely with glass, since the idea was to explain to the women present the etiquette of complete formal tables. The meeting before the Edgewater Club drew an exceptionally large audience and it proved profitable to Stern Bros. since 150 women were reminded of the values available at that store and were at the same time educated on the fine points of fine quality glassware such as Cambridge. The need has long been felt in the china and glass industry for frequent consumer education on the values of china and glass."

The preceding was a feature article in the October 1935 issue of Crockery And Glass Journal.

Cambridge Glass Co. Wins Two Prizes for Table Settings at State Fair

"One of the big features of the Illinois State Fair held at Springfield, ILL, was an exhibit of table settings. These were changed during the fair and the Cambridge Glass Company took first prizes for tables with their glass.

One was a Golden Wedding setting using Cambridge's Gold Rose Point. A ruby glass service plate set off the crystal. And the silverware was washed in gold, also the Rose Point Pattern. Yellow roses were used in the console bowl with their leaved gilded.

Candlelight patent The other was a Bridal Luncheon table set for four. The glassware and the console were Cambridge's Lily of the Valley pattern with the frosted stems. The candlesticks were also of the matching pattern. Under the crystal plates were service plates of green glass and this green and white was repeated in the Lily of the Valley blossoms and leaves in the centerpiece. Green and white mints filled the comports. At each place was a place card of a bride in her bridal veil and a small cup attached with green and white candies."

Crockery And Glass Journal October 1935

"Candlelight" - Another Hit

"By special permission of The Towle Silversmiths, Newburyport, Mass., we have created a new deep plate etching on a new shape to be offered with their famous and nationally advertised sterling silver. It will pay you to keep a place in your stock for this wonderful line which will be presented to you as soon as completed. (Patent applied for) The Cambridge Glass Company, Cambridge, Ohio USA A Nation-Wide Sales Force at Your Service."

From a Cambridge advertisement in the December 1935 issue of Crockery and Glass Journal.

Author's Note: It is not precisely clear what is meant by "a new shape" but probably refers to the stemware line 3114 which appeared along with the etching in the patent illustration. A copy of that illustration appears above, right.