Glass Dress and Factory Materials Make Interesting Glassware Display

Trade Journal Article
Issue No. 207 - July 1990

The following article and photo's are from the September 12, 1927 issue of China, Glass & Lamps.

Columbus, Ohio, for a week during August had something to talk about. It was the display in the windows of the Wm. Hinterschied Co., wholesalers and retailers of china and glass at 195 South High Street. This display depicted materials and processes in the manufacture of glassware as well as an attention-getting example of the art of the glassworker.

In one of the High street display windows of the Hinterschied store was shown a glass spun dress or a dress made from spun glass.

A beautiful wax figure was draped as she sat in a chair with the spun glass dress and on the seated figure was trained a crimson Glass Dress display spotlight. The model was seated in an Italian Renaissance high back chair and immediately behind it were natural palms against a background of silk lace draperies. On one side of the figure was placed a sign explaining the history of the glass dress and on the other side was a large photograph of Miss Edith King, leading woman with the Hartman Theater Stock Company of Columbus, actually wearing the dress.

A second window was confined to the display of glassware in process of manufacture from raw materials to the completed article. The materials were supplied by and were the property of the Cambridge Glass Co., Cambridge, Ohio, which also is the owner of the spun glass dress. Photographs of the two windows are reproduced herewith.

Illustrating the wearing qualities of glass is the history of the spun glass dress. It was made in Brooklyn about 1902 and was made on a model representing the figure of Maxine Elliott, then a leading state favorite as well as a great beauty. The dress actually was worn by Miss Elliott during a stage performance. The dress was later exhibited at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo on a wax model of Miss Elliott. The dress now is the property of the Cambridge Glass Co.

In the window displaying materials and manufacturing processes, explanatory signs were placed on each of the exhibits. Among the exhibits were a small or "monkey" pot, in which glass is melted; a gathering pipe, several iron molds and the various materials such as sand, soda ash, lead, lime and coloring oxides.

The entire exhibit was planned with great care because it was felt by both Hinterschieds and the Cambridge Glass Co. that unusual interest would be developed. Prior to the opening of the display, Miss King appeared on the stage at the Hartman Theater wearing the glass dress. On the day following the opening of the display, local newspapers printed descriptive articles.

Attention having been drawn to the unusual display through the stage and newspaper publicity, the display itself caught and held the attention of those passing the Hinterschied store. While no tabulation of the number of people who came to view the exhibit was made, the Wm. Hinterschied Co. believe they are certain in estimating that not less than 25,000 persons saw the display and were sufficiently interested in it to spend from five to 20 minutes viewing it.

The unique display was continued for one week and created such interest that people talked about it in all sections of the city and officials of the Hartman Theater told the Wm. Hinterschied Co. that several hundreds had commented on the exhibition to them.

The Wm. Hinterschied Co. found that the display was the most successful publicity "stunt" they ever had put on and declare that it was very valuable to them from an advertising point of view. The Cambridge Glass Co. reports that several large department stores have asked for loan of the glass dress and glass materials for display purposes in their stores.

Cleveland enjoyed the display of the glass dress and the glass-making materials during the week of September 5, through the windows of the Geo. H. Bowman Co. on Euclid avenue. During this week, starting September 12, the display will be shown in Toronto by the T. Eaton Co.

Early in October the windows of the Crowley-Milner Co., in Detroit, will have the display.