"Decagon" Vs. Liberty's "Egg Harbor"

by F. R. "Bud" Walker
Issue No. 216 - April 1991

For those of you who do not know me, my name is Bud Walker. I live in Egg Harbor, New Jersey. I have been around glass all of my life. My great grandfather owned a window glass factory, and I was a mold boy for my neighbor who had a small shop in his back yard. Liberty Works logo I worked with a fellow named Wib Orme who was the grandson of A. J. Bennett - the man who made the Cambridge Glass Company the success that it was. Before Wib passed away, he gave me a Carmen mug with a crystal handle. This was the beginning of my Cambridge collection.

Luncheon Set This article is not about the Cambridge Glass Company. It's about an almost forgotten glass company that was located in Egg Harbor City, New Jersey. The name of this company was Liberty Works, at one time, and Liberty Glass Company, at another.

This article is written in the hope of ending the confusion between the Liberty Glass Works' "Egg Harbor" line (which was a 24 piece breakfast set), and the Cambridge Glass Company's "Decagon" line. Both companies produced their lines in emerald green and pink, which further adds to the confusion.

This past fall, my wife and I were at a large flea market in Pennsylvania where we came upon an Egg Harbor breakfast set (above right). The price was right and we had about decided to purchase it, when the dealer approached us and said that it was a lovely Cambridge Decagon set. I told her that I collected Cambridge and that the set was not theirs. Before I could say whose it was, I got the old "don't tell me, I've Egg Harbor cup Decagon cup been in the antique business for more than twenty years and I know Cambridge when I see it." One word led to another and she lost a sale, and I lost the breakfast set that I wanted to purchase from her. I learned a lesson! If they are interested in learning, I tell. It they insist it's Cambridge, that's okay by me.

In order to identify Liberty's Egg Harbor line you need to know that the cups are six sided and flare way out from the base. Each of the panels is dished at the lip of the cup and the handles are round. The saucers are eight paneled and are slightly dished at the edges. The luncheon plates are also eight paneled.

Compare the two The Cambridge Decagon cups have ten panels. The sides are almost straight with a slight flare at the lip. The handles are square. The Decagon saucer is 3-3/8" and has ten panels. It has a more rounded look. The base of the Egg Harbor saucer is 3-3/8" across, while the Decagon saucer is 2-3/8". The base of both cups is 2". Cup height is 2¼" for Cambridge and 2-1/8" for Liberty. The Egg Harbor luncheon plate is 8" while the Decagon is 8-5/8".

In my opinion, there is no way that you can tell who made the piece by its color. The finish on the Decagon pieces feels slightly smoother to the touch than the pieces of Egg Harbor. Cambridge glass quality is much better than Liberty's.