Smokers' Items, Part VI

by Mark A. Nye
Issue No. 259 - November 1994

This series of articles on smokers' items ends this month with a review of what was available during the years the "new Cambridge Glass Co." was in operation. The original Cambridge Glass Co. ceased operations during the Summer of 1954 and was sold. Following a reorganization by the new owner, the "new Cambridge Glass Co." began producing glass in March 1955. Operations ceased for good four years later. During those years, often called the reopen(ed) years or reopen(ed) period, many items offered were from molds designed and created by the original company.

During the final months of the original company, an additional Pristine line ash tray, the P737 canoe ash tray, came into being. One of two last smokers' items designed by the Original Cambridge Glass Co., it is not certain the canoe ash tray was ever sold by them. This ash tray does appear in the new company's catalog, on two price lists issued in 1956, but not on the final price list, issued in 1958. Made only in Crystal, its 1956 list or retail price was $1.00.

Besides the canoe ash tray, planned for but probably never produced, was one more cigarette box and cover. The available information about this box, a few words in the mold order book, does not even provide the size, much less any type of description.

During the first few months of its operations, the "new Cambridge Glass Co." designed their 1956 line. This line contained two sizes of ash trays, a coaster ash tray and spoon holder, and an ash tray with a peg plus several articles not related to smoking. These included an eight-inch oval bowl, a ten-inch bowl, salt and pepper shakers and a floral center piece based on the ash tray with peg.

Commonly called the "ham bone ash tray," the 1956 ash tray was made in two sizes; the 1956/1 measured 10 inches while the 1956/5 measured 8 inches. Both came plain or with cut top and in the colors of Crystal, Pink, Smoke, Pistachio, Mandarin Gold and Moonlight Blue. The 1956/10 coaster ash tray and spoon holder came only in Crystal.

Made in Crystal and Smoke, the 1956 floral center piece is based on the 1956/1 ash tray changed by adding a peg. It then became the 1956/2 ash tray with peg. A flower block that fits over the peg and with holes for three 5-inch peg vases is the next component. Completing the center piece is the 1956/4 5-inch optic peg vase. This peg vase is similar to the 1633 5-inch peg vase but differs in that it has a smaller base and has the optic pattern. The actual center piece consists of the 1956/2 ash tray with peg, the 1956/3 flower block and three 1956/4 peg vases.

The Sonata line was the only line of dinnerware created by the "new Cambridge Glass Co." A small line, it did include a single ash tray, the 1957/6 12-inch executive ash tray. Made only in Crystal, this ash tray has a cut and polished top and originally came in a white gift box. An expensive item for its time, it retailed for $12.00 each.

Besides the items seen on the 1956 catalog pages reprinted with this article, illustrated in the Gifts section of this catalog is the 3011 or Nude ash tray. The caption in the price list read: "Lady Figure Line. Made in Smoke, Pink, Mandarin Gold, Moonlight Blue, Pistachio, Carmen. Crystal stem and foot, colored bowl." By 1958, the only Nude or Lady Figure item still available was the cocktail.

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