In preparing for the kitchen re-do, I have been cleaning out the china cabinet. These ice cream/sherbet dishes, manufactured by the Libbey Glass Company, had been a staple in the soda fountain business of yesteryear. Obviously, Grandma wished she had some green ones. Depression glass came in clear, rose pink, green, yellow, and blue.
I have written before about Grandma and her paint brush. Any time someone gave her left-over paint, or if she managed to splurge and buy a can in a color she wanted, she did not rest until every last drop of it was gone. On one of my last trips out to her house–long after she and Grandpa had passed, I found these two ice cream dishes in a pile of trash beside the chicken coop. They were both green at the time, but as I have also mentioned before, Mississippi is hard on things. Periodically, I would take them off their shelf and wash them, and a little bit more green paint would flake off or be scrubbed off–some possibly due to the never-ebbing humidity. After all, I have had shoes fall apart while sitting in my closet.
Libbey Glass was initially founded as New England Glass in 1818. In 1874, Edward Libbey joined his father at the company, and by 1880, he inherited full control of the company. In 1888, he relocated the company to Toledo, Ohio where
The Northwest Ohio area offered abundant natural gas resources and access to large deposits of high quality sand. Toledo also had a network of railroad and steamship lines, making it an ideal location for the company. In 1892, the name was changed to The Libbey Glass Company.Our Story. Retrieved from libbey.com/history/
Grocers, food manufacturers and other merchants began giving away free or reduced price glass dishes as premiums during the years of the Great Depression. A look at the newspapers from 1928 forward shows the many giveaways:
- At All Certified Grocery Stores With Each Can of Golden Wedding Baking Powder 25c One Beautiful Optic Glass Tumbler FREE
- FREE GLASS JADE BOWL with purchase of 2 boxes powdered soap and 1 10c can cleanser, all for 29c (Total Value 60c)
- FREE! 15c Cereal Bowl with purchase of Belmont Brand Rolled Oats
- FIT-FOR-A-KING C-O-F-F-E-E FREE CUP AND SAUCER with purchase No. 3 can $1.29
One could receive a glass shaker set with each dozen of Saegertown Ginger Ale, a colored glass cake tray with 2 packages of Pillsbury cake flour, free glass plates with salad dressing, free towels with laundry detergent, and the big special for only 20c:
As I told my Sis, I was not sure if anyone would want the sherbet dishes, let alone to go to the trouble of getting off the green paint, but I just thought it was so like Grandma and I would smile when I looked at them, sitting on my tea-cup shelf over the buffet. Libbey manufactured soda fountain glasses to hold ice cream or other fountain items, such as malts or sundaes. Before these were green, I speculate they held scoops of Neapolitan ice milk.