Some History of the Post Carder Era

Frederick Carder designed the great majority of Steuben Glass pieces during the period from 1903 until about 1932-1933. From 1903 until about 1917 Carder was able to control all aspects of Steuben production. Corning Glass Works acquired Steuben in about 1917 and it became the Steuben Division of Corning Glass. Carder remained as Managing Director of Steuben.

In 1932 and 1933 several things occurred that had direct effects on Carder and Steuben. First, Steuben had lost money for a number of years and the country was trying to recover from a worldwide depression, which significantly reduced consumer spending on luxury goods. Second, the public seemed to lose some interest in colored glass. Third, Corning Glass had developed a very bright colorless glass for scientific purposes, and Corning was looking for other uses for this glass.

This combination of problems caused the Board of Corning Glass to decide to phase out the production of Steuben’s colored glass and switch to this new colorless glass, that was designated 10-M. The whole design philosophy of Steuben also changed. Steuben went from a single designer who designed for numerous types, colors and finishes of glass to many designers who designed for only the 10-M colorless glass. Conventional wisdom says that production of Steuben’s colored glass stopped at this time. In reality there was some colored glass made well into the Post-Carder era. The last known order for colored glass that was fulfilled occurred in 1943.

At this time designers were hired to begin the design of glass objects made in new colorless glass. Many of the designs that Carder originally designed for colored glass continued to be made in the new 10-M colorless glass. We know this because the book by M.J. Madigan Steuben Glass An American Tradition in Crystal shows a number of the drawings of these Carder designs. In addition, we occasionally see Carder- designed pieces on the secondary market that have the post-1932 Steuben diamond point signature, which was not used until after the Carder era.

Carder Designed Items Produced After 1932

The list below shows those Carder-designed pieces where production continued into the Post-Carder era. One thing that we don’t know, though the data may exist within Corning Inc., is how long some of these continued to be made. The Carder-designed 2028 plate remained in production well into the 1960s.

  • 2028 Plate
  • 2679 Vase
  • 2680 Sherbet
  • 2683 Vase
  • 6053 Vase
  • 6268 Stemware
  • 6401 Stemware
  • 6415 Bowl
  • 6502 Eagle
  • 6504 Pheasant*
  • 6662 Flower Frog
  • 6821 Luminor
  • 6824 Pigeon
  • 6858 Bowl
  • 6872 Bowl
  • 6876 Vase*
  • 6890 Bowl
  • 6918 Bowl
  • 6968 Vase*
  • 7035 Vase
  • 7090 Vase*
  • 7091 Bowl
  • 7128 Vase*
  • 7129 Vase
  • 7238 Stemware
  • 7242 Candelabra
  • 7244 Ashtray
  • 7289 Bowl

* While all shapes denoted with an asterisk were thought to be Carder designs because of their listing in The Glass of Frederick Carder by Paul V. Gardner, the shapes are now thought to be either attributed to other designers or have a shared attribution with Frederick Carder. These attributions are shown in Steuben Glass: An American Tradition in Crystal by Mary Jean Madigan. Please click on the available link to go to the line drawing of the piece in the Shape Gallery to see the design attribution for the shape.

Symposium 2024
Carder Steuben Glass Association
20-21 September 2024
© Carder Steuben Glass Association Inc.