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Growing from relatively modest 19th-century beginnings, Libbey Glass
Company became one of the largest American makers of glass over the
course of the 20th century. Still an industry leader today, Libbey Glass is
also celebrated for its antique pieces, which reflect the evolution of the
company over past generations.
First founding the New England Glass Company in Cambridge,
Massachusetts in 1874, Edward Libbey decided to move his glassworks to
Toledo, Ohio. This move proved auspicious, as Libbey Glass accelerated
into acclaim soon after. Libbey's success was a result of their high quality
craftsmanship in a wide range of products from utilitarian goods to fine cut
glass pieces. Working collaboratively with Michael Joseph Owens, an
inventor in the field of glass bottle manufacturing, Libbey and his company
increased their production to take the glass market by storm.
Libbey continued to innovate well into the 20th century, even venturing
in the production of glass windshields for the auto industry, but it is their
antique cut glass pieces that are celebrated among collectors. From Aztec
and Comet to Imperial and Morello, Libbey cut glass patterns are a perennial
favorite as they are both brilliantly and beautifully designed.
Ever the salesman, Libbey sponsored an elaborate glassmaking
demonstration facility at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago
to showcase the company's abilities
Edward Libbey was also an avid art collector, contributing the basis for
the collection of the Toledo Museum of Art, which Libbey founded in 1901.
One of the highlights of their collection was a Libbey cut glass punch bowl
with a 25 inch diameter. This bowl, originally featured at the 1904 Saint
Louis World's Fair, was touted as the largest piece of cut glass in the
Libbey Glass Company is America's largest maker of glass dinnerware
with production facilities across the United States and in northern
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