Q. My glass pitcher was a wedding gift to my great-grandmother in 1897. I saw a similar piece in a glass museum in Wheeling, West Virginia, and learned the pattern was made by the Hobbs Glass Company. Can you tell me more?
A. The Hobbs Glass Company worked from 1888 to 1891, when it became part of the U.S. Glass Company. The firm's roots date back to 1845, when Barnes, Hobbs & Company took over a glass factory in Wheeling. From 1881 to 1888 the company, then known as Hobbs, Brockunier & Company, made its highest quality glassware. Your pitcher is in Hobbs' Hexagonal Block pattern (No. 335). This pressed glass pattern was first made in early 1890, but ruby stain pieces like yours were not introduced until the following year. Hexagonal Block was also made with amber stain, amber stain with etching, and ruby stain with engraving or etching. Your pitcher is worth about $150.
For more information about Hobbs glassware, see Hobbs, Brockunier & Co. Glass by Neila and Tom Bredehoft (Collector Books, Paducah, KY, c1997).
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