Transparent Colors, Part III

by Mark A. Nye
Issue No. 189 - January 1989

Continuing with the introduction of Willow Blue in the summer of 1928, the following text was published as a full-page advertisement in the August 13, 1928 issue of China, Glass and Lamps.

"The Cambridge Glass Company Presents

This appealing product is our answer to the demand for a new, quality colored glassware in a design of real beauty. It is offered in the confident belief that it will be an outstanding favorite with the buying public during the Fall and Holiday season. It is worthy of you attention. If your order has not yet been placed, arrange to see it at once. You will not be disappointed, and remember: CAMBRIDGE WARES STIMULATE SALES.. The new "Willow Blue" is on display at our factory and showrooms."

From Crockery and Glass Journal, July 1928, comes this description of the new Cambridge color.

"A New Cambridge Blue of Rare Charm - introducing for the first time a brand new shade of blue in glassware which they have named "Willow Blue." The Cambridge Glass Co., Cambridge O., have attained a truly notable achievement in a color which is destined to meet with immediate popularity. The individuality of the color, which is distinct unto itself, has only been accomplished after long experimentation on the part of the factory. An interesting point to be stressed in connection with this new blue is the fact that it particularly harmonizes with the present day popular pastel tints found in fancy pottery and other attractive decorative pieces in the modern home. The Cambridge firm is especially featuring the Willow Blue in their tableware on the Decagon shape. Some idea of how attractive this color is in combination with this line may be derived by reference to the illustration herewith. No great stretch of the imagination is necessary to visualize how adaptable it is in this respect. A full line of the new samples may now be seen at the New York Salesroom, 18 Fifth Ave."

Advertisements published during the Spring of 1929 made frequent mention of emerald, amber, Peach-Blo and willow blue. Among these was one featuring Cleo on Decagon blanks that included this statement:

" ... in Willow Blue, an unusual shade of blue; in Peach-Blo, a unique shade of pink and in Emerald, a green of spring time freshness."

Then, in June 1929, a new color name, Madeira, appears in an advertisement published on the cover of Chine, Glass and Lamps: "CAMBRIDGE glass is made in beautiful transparent colors of Emerald, Madeira, Peach-Blo and Willow Blue." In this advertisement, no indication of the nature of Madeira is provided, but one week later the following appeared in the June 17, 1929 issue of the same publication:


Adding to its variety of transparent colors, the Cambridge Glass Co., Cambridge Ohio, recently has introduced a light golden amber shade, which it has named "Madeira." This new color is in addition to the attractive Willow Blue, Peach-Blo and Emerald, which have been the leading transparent colors with the Cambridge Glass Co.

The "Madeira" is neither a canary yellow nor a deep amber, but what might be described as halfway between the two. It is a clear, entrancing color and keeps its tone effect in both blown and pressed ware. Many of the new items brought out in the past few weeks by the Cambridge Glass Co. are being offered in "Madeira" or in combinations, especially stemware, of "Madeira" bowl and crystal stem and foot ... "

During the following months various Cambridge advertisements referred to the new color Madeira and described it as a "golden amber."

1929 Advertisement Once again, the cover of China, Glass and Lamps was used to introduce a new color for it is there, the August 26, 1929 issue (at right), we find this statement: "The newest in stemware is Gold-Krystol glass. See it and you will admire it." The following month a more complete description of the color appeared:


Among the new lines which the Cambridge Glass Co. of Cambridge, Ohio is offering in blown and pressed glassware for the coming Holiday trade, the newest in stemware is called "Gold Krystal" in combination of the bowl in the new transparent color - gold and crystal foot and stem.

The transparent shade which gives to "Gold Krystal" its attractive coloring is an entirely new color with the Cambridge factory. It is a light gold and bright and attractive, a close approximation in glass to "gold." The coloring golds throughout and it can be distinguished easily. There is no amber tinge to the "Gold Krystal" of the Cambridge factory. It is rather a deep yellow-gold than an amber-gold.

The new color is attractive in optic or in plain shape with or without decoration. It is quite effective in the "aero" optic which has been a feature in Cambridge glassware this year. An attractive number in "Gold Krystal" with etching is the No. 3120 shape, which has a beautiful stem. Various etched designs are available, including the new No. 733."

Do note the difference in spelling of "Krystal" in the preceding vs. "Krystol" in the original advertisement. Subsequent Cambridge advertisements in September and October of the same year continued to use the "Krystal" version. An advertisement published in December of 1929 (at right) 1929 Advertisement mentioned Madeira, Peach-Blo, Emerald and Willow Blue, but failed to include Gold Krystol. This, however, should not be taken to mean Gold Krystol had been dropped, for it does appear in listings published the next month. Taken in context of the advertisement, it probably is an indication the items shown were not, at the time, available in this color.

A listing of Cambridge colors was published in the 1930 edition of the China, Glass and Lamps Trade Directory and these colors were: "Gold Krystol, Emerald, Willow Blue, Peach-Blo, Amber-Glo and Ebony. No mention was made of Madeira and in its place we find a return of the name Amber-Glo. However, another listing, this time in paragraphs describing new wares from the Cambridge factory, we find Madeira rather than Amber-Glo being listed. Early in 1930, very possibly, during January of that year, Cambridge issued a new catalog and in that catalog is this statement regarding colors:

"Refer to Price List for COLORS in which Glassware shown in this catalog is made. Practically all items illustrated are made in Crystal, as well as the prevailing transparent colors, such as Amber, Emerald, Peach-Blo, Willow Blue and Gold Krystol. Many items are made in Ebony also. The price list gives full information as to the colors in which each line is made."

Unfortunately, a copy of the price list that accompanied this catalog has not yes surfaced. Do note the spelling and capitalization used in the statement. Documents known to be of Cambridge origin and Cambridge advertisements no doubt reflect the proper color nomenclature and spelling designated by the company.

In this case, it can be concluded Madeira had been discontinued by the start of 1930 and a new amber shade, known simply as "Amber" had replaced it. This Amber is darker than Madeira and those amber colored items etched Apple Blossom are examples of the 1930 Amber.

To be continued ...