Journal Describes Imperial Homestead Carnival Glass
Carnival glass originated as a glass called ‘Iridill’, produced beginning in 1908 by the Fenton Art Glass Company founded in 1905. Iridill was inspired by the fine blown art glass of such makers as Tiffany and Steuben, but did not sell at the anticipated premium prices and was subsequently discounted. After these markdowns, Iridill pieces were used as carnival prizes. By giving away or selling sample pieces to carnival fair operators, it was hoped that a winner would then go on to purchase further items in the same or a similar pattern. Iridill became popular and very profitable for Fenton, which produced many different types of items in this finish, in over 150 patterns. Fenton maintained their position as the largest manufacturer and were one of very few makers to use a red coloured glass base for their carnival glass. Other manufacturers included Northwood, Imperial, Millersburg, Westmoreland, Dugan/Diamond, Cambridge, and U.S. Glass companies as well as many smaller manufacturers. Competition became so fierce that new patterns were continually being developed.
On June 13, 1912 Crockery and Glass Journal described the Imperial Homestead Chop Plate: “This is a plaque bearing a picturesque scene of an old fashioned American homestead by the side of a stream. An artistic rustic bridge crosses the water, under which are ducks peacefully enjoying a swim.”