Reproductions - Part II
by Mark Nye
Issue 306 - October 1998
In the April 1996 issue, I began a discussion of reproductions using molds that were purchased during the liquidation of the Imperial Glass Co. by buyers other than NCC. Many of the molds that were purchased have seen little or no use since their purchase. However, they could be used at any time and collectors should be aware of this potential.
Molds from the Everglade and its successor line, Arcadia, were among those purchased. Those believed in private hands are listed with their original Cambridge numbers and descriptions.
"How do I tell 'repros' from the original Cambridge production?" is an often heard question. Study available books, catalogs, and other reference materials to learn what colors Cambridge used to make its major lines and final shapes of pieces. A good many items sold by Cambridge were hand finished and shaped after the piece left the mold. Most, if not all, plates come from a mold that resembles one for a bowl and required hand flaring of the piece removed from the mold to turn it into a plate. Oftentimes reproductions or pieces made from original molds do not undergo this final shaping step in the manufacturing process. The final shape of the resulting item is different than that of the authentic Cambridge piece and "unlisted" bowls may be seen. Such bowls were never made or sold by Cambridge as the mold was intended only to make plates or be hand shaped. A good example of this is the Everglades Buffalo bowl produced in a carnival finish soon after the Imperial sale. Not only was it in a color not used by Cambridge for the piece, the shape was that as it came from the mold, a shape never sold by Cambridge.
Another example of an unfinished piece that has been reproduced is the No. 24 sherbet. Seen in a color resembling Moonlight and a white glass, this piece was not flared out like the original. While somewhat subtle, there is a definite difference between the old and new.
The Everglade and Springtime lines began to appear in 1929 and remained in the Cambridge line through the mid- to late-1930s. Colors used were the pastels of this time period, primarily Willow Blue, Light Emerald, Peach-blo, as well as Amber, Forest Green and Crystal. After its introduction in 1938, Moonlight replaced Willow Blue. A very few pieces were also made in Carmen.
The Everglades and Springtime lines are illustrated in the 1930-34 catalog reprint as are the 1125, 1126 and 1139 bowls. The latter are shown under the heading Table Centers. The Arcadia line was introduced in the early 1940s and it is shown in the 1940 catalog reprint. A few pieces also appeared under the name Leaf Line and it too is shown in the 1930-34 catalog reprint.
With this article are reprinted two pages from a circa 1936-37 Cambridge catalog that not only illustrated the piece but also gave color availability and price. These pages were first reprinted by the Welkers in their catalog reprint books published in the 1970s.