by Mark Nye
Issue 307 - November 1998

On February 16,1933, Jess Clair Kelly, on behalf of the Cambridge Glass Co., filed a design patent application that read: Nautilus Patent Drawings

Be it known that I, Jess Clair Kelly, a citizen of the United States of America, and resident of Cambridge, county of Guernsey, and State of Ohio, have invented a new, original and ornamental design for a Jug or Similar Article, of which the following is a specification, reference being had to the accompanying drawing in which Figure 1 is a stop plan view of a jug or similar article showing my new design; Figure 2 is a side elevation of the same; Figure 3 is a rear view of the same; Figure 4 is a bottom view of the same. I claim: The ornamental design for jug or similar article substantially as shown.

Mr. Kelly was issued design patent No. 89828 for the "jug or similar article." Later advertising for the line indicated it was also covered by design patent 84482 which was issued for the 3400 line ball jug.

In the interest of space, the original drawings are replaced with part of a page from the U.S. Patent Office Official Gazette showing all four drawings in a reduced size. The originals were two to a page.

Assigned the line number 3450, the new line was named Nautilus and appeared on a supplemental catalog page issued circa early 1934. It was also the subject of a four-page pamphlet that is undated but was issued some time in the mid to late 1930s. It is reprinted on a separate page. See the notation at the end of this article.

Both the patent application drawings and the ones printed in the Official Gazette show a reeded handle. Neither the catalog page nor the pamphlet illustrations indicate a reeded handle. Both show a plain, applied handle and the amethyst jug in my collection has the plain handle.

Crown Tuscan is not mentioned as one of the available colors. However, at the bottom of the price list page is the statement "All handles and stoppers arc crystal except on Crown Tuscan." Other than the two vases, this author does not know what other Nautilus items were made in Crown Tuscan. I would be interested in hearing from collectors who may have pieces of Nautilus in Crown Tuscan.

To round out the Nautilus line, Cambridge used the wine and five flat tumblers from the 3078 stemware line. This line was introduced in 1933.

The only trade journal reference to the Nautilus line that I was able to locate was in the October 1934 issue of China, Glass and Lamps. A decanter and wine glass were illustrated with this caption:

"The Nautilus design is an outstanding creation. Wine sets are especially attractive because of the striking decanter and the handsome glasses. Done in Crystal, Amber, Royal Blue, Forest Green, Amethyst and Carmen and combination of Crystal and color."

The Nautilus line was discontinued sometime prior to 1940 as the catalog issued that year failed to make mention of it.

NOTE: As it takes some time to load, we have placed the Nautilus Brochure referred to in the article above on its own page.