Fostoria Glass Company
The Fostoria Glass Company was established in 1887 in Fostoria, Ohio. The factory was built in this location because of the large quantities of natural gas that were supposed to be available in the area. Four years later when the company began having trouble with fuel supplies they moved to Moundsville, West Virginia and remained at that plant until their closing in 1986.
From the beginning, Fostoria's founders recognized what was important to the American public. In the early years they recognized the need for decorative oil lamps, and as a result these lamps became one of the Fostoria's best selling products. As the company expanded, in the early 1900s Fostoria started making glassware for home use. Because of innovative techniques and excellent craftsmen, Fostoria was well on the way to becoming one of the largest glass houses in the country. Fostoria's most popular and best known table ware pattern (American) was created about this time. Fostoria produced American until the company closed in 1986. After Fostoria closed , Lancaster Colony acquired many of the molds, and some pieces are still being made today.
In 1924 Fostoria introduced color to its glassware. The company advertised nationwide. They were the first company to offer complete glass lines of dinner ware in colors. By 1925 the company had expanded to include 5 furnaces, and employed 650 workers. Fostoria was a household name. Brides and homemakers everywhere wanted to own a set of Fostoria. By 1940 the Fostoria Glass Company was the largest manufacturer of household glassware in the United States.
The Fostoria Glass Company continued to prosper and grow for the next few decades. It finally closed its operation in 1986.
Many of the Fostoria molds were later sold to other companies. Lancaster Colony and Fenton produce some glass made from old Fostoria molds today. There is a great deal of difference between the glassware that was made by Fostoria and the glassware that has been made recently or is being currently made. Please make sure that you are well informed about these later issues before purchasing your glassware.
Some of the Information for this brief history came from the book "Colored Glassware of the Depression Era 2" by Hazel Marie Weatherman.
Other great books on Fostoria include:
"Fostoria It's First 50 Years"by Hazel Marie Weatherman;
"Fostoria The Popular Years"published by Park Avenue Publications;
"Fostoria Glassware 1887-1982" by Frances Bones;
"Fostoria Useful and Ornamental, the Crystal for America" by Milbra Long and Emily Seate; and
"Elegant Glassware of the Depression Era"by Gene Florence
Company Maker: The Fostoria Glass ...