ELMERGLASSWORKS

 

 

When talking about the Elmer Glass Works, it must be remembered that there were two glass factories in Elmer.��� They were in business about the same time, and there were some similarities in the products.��� First was the Lower Works, and then the Upper Works was added.�� Overall, there was glass production in Elmer a little more than twenty years, but it was a very bumpy twenty years for the various owners.�� I�ve presented this information as best as possible using newspaper clips and other notes.��� Any additional information about the ownerships and products will be welcomed.

 

THE LOWER WORKS

 

The following was reported in the Dec. 27, 1883 Camden Daily Courier.�� �The Elmer Glass Manufacturing Company, in Salem County, will be ready to go into operation by the middle of January.The Works will give employment to about sixty men and boys.�� The factory will contain a four-stone oven and a double set of flattening stones.�� The engine room is 24x24, blowing house 80x80, cutting house 24x60, flattening house 40x80 and the pot house 24x48.����� This is the description of a glass factory that will make window glass.��� There is one reference indicating the name was �Elmer Window Light Co.���

 

The Camden Daily Courier reported on March 12, 1885, that the new glass works at Elmer will begin operations on April1st.�� It obviously took longer to build the factory than originally thought.�� This is why the dates for the start of the Elmer Glass Works range from 1883 to 1885.It appears that the Elmer plant was making window glass in the latter part of the 1880�s.

 

In 1889, the factory was purchased by James Butcher and George G. Waddington.�� At that time the work force was at 75, and they manufactured coach, car, single and double thick window glass.��� They had one eight pot furnace and produced first class window glass.�� Butcher and Waddington also operated a large general store near the factory.

 

During the 1890�s, a man by the name of Deijo operated the facility.�� There is little known of him, and it is assumed he operated the factory for Butcher & Waddington.��� Albert Sturr purchased the property early in 1900.��

 

Mr. Sturr leased sections of his facility to three different firms making different products.�� There was the Improved Gilchrist Jar Co. making milk glass lid inserts for their fruit jars.��� NJ Metal Co. produced metal jar lids for the 1858 type Mason Jars.Also the Sterling Glass Co. made pressed glass items, including insulators.�� Some of the insulators are embossed with the word �Sterling� in script, while others contained the English insignia for the Pound.���

 

In 1903, the Harloe Insulator Co., of Hawley, Pa. succeeded the Sterling Glass Co. and produced insulators for about six months.��� In late 1903, Harloe withdrew, leading Albert Sturr to sell the factory to the Parker Bros. of Bridgeton.�� Production of insulators started again in 1904, and continued for a period of time, but it is not clear how long or if it was continuous.�� The glass factory finally closed in 1907.

 

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THE UPPER WORKS

 

In 1896, five acres of land were purchased along the railroad, just north of the Elmer-Malaga Road, by the G. M. Bassett Glass Co.�� A glass factory was built and went into production making various types of bottles.�� When the factory was sold a few years later, there were 185 different bottle moulds.���� Mr. Bassett had a tumultuous time with the glass workers.�� One account indicates he treated then unfairly and compelled them to buy their goods from the company store.

 

In 1899, the property was sold to the Gilchrist Jar Company.��� Fruit jars and lids, along with round and rectangular battery jars were now products of the Upper Works.�� The fruit jars included the Gilchrist jar, the Doolittle Self Sealer, and the RAG jar.��� The Gilchrist Company also had difficulties, this time with a patent infringement with the Cumberland Glass Co. as the complainant.����� The factory was again sold in 1901, to the Novelty Glass Manufacturing Co.��� Novelty Glass made insulators, along with battery jars and door knobs.���

 

The Brookfield Glass Co., a dominating producer of insulators brought suit against Novelty, for patent infringement of their mould machines.��� After a long court battle, the Novelty Glass Co. had to shut down, and sell assets to pay court costs.�� The factory was then bought by R. Morris Davis, using the name Elmer Glass Works, in early 1904.�� The factory continued making insulators using Duffield machines.�� Thomas Duffield had won an infringement suit brought against his machines by the Brookfields.��� Many different types of insulators were produced, but there is little information about them.���

 

The Upper Works was sold to Isaac L. Shoemaker in July 1907.�� It apparently ceased operation sometime in 1907.�������

 

 

 

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