Indiana Glass Company History Indiana Glass Company, Dunkirk, Ind. (1904-2002).

The origin of this factory began with the Beatty-Brady Glass Company, founded in 1895 and in operation in Dunkirk by 1897. In 1899, when the National Glass Company was formed, Beatty-Brady was one of the companies acquired by the combine. Frank W. Merry became superintendent and, in 1904, was involved in the formation of the Indiana Glass Company, which leased the plant from the National. After the failure of the National Glass Company, Merry and a group of associates purchased the factory and Merry remained president until his death in 1930.

Early production ranged from jelly tumblers to imitation-cut tableware, both in original designs and from molds obtained from the Model Flint Glass Company of Albany, Ind., and the Indiana Tumbler and Goblet Company of Greentown, Ind. (both of which had also joined the National Glass Company). In the 1920s, they introduced a variety of old Sandwich reproductions as well as a series of very modernistic designs, strongly influenced by the Art Deco movement, including the very popular Tea Room pattern, while also producing large quantities of colonial style soda fountain and restaurant ware. Many of these patterns were to remain staples for years or were periodically reissued to attract new generations of glass buyers. Production during these years was both hand-made and machine-made. Simultaneously, the company also specialized in the production of automobile headlight lenses and other industrial glassware, at one time producing about 80% of the lenses used in the United States.

By the 1950s, the company had encountered financial difficulties, including the acquisition of the Sneath Glass Company of Hartford City, Ind., in an unsuccessful attempt to transition to the manufacture of sealed-beam headlights, which had overtaken the old-style auto lenses in popularity. For a time, stockholders were forced to step in and take over management of the plant, but ultimately the company came back stronger than ever beginning with a merger with the Lancaster Lens Company of Lancaster, Ohio, to become the Lancaster Glass Corporation and, ultimately, the Lancaster Colony Corporation in 1962. As the Indiana Glass Division of the new conglomerate, the Dunkirk factory continued to make glass under its own name, as well as under the Colony Glassware label for Pitman-Dreitzer & Company, Inc

Throughout the later years, Indiana not only continued to introduce new patterns, but also frequently reissued patterns originally brought out in the 1920s and 1930s. They also acquired and reworked molds from many other companies, including McKee, Paden City, Jenkins, U.S. Glass, Duncan and Miller, and Imperial.

This trend reached a climax in 1970 when Tiara Exclusives was formed as an offshoot of Indiana Glass. Tiara made no glass themselves but offered sales through a home party plan where hostesses received premiums and bonuses for selling products to friends and invited guests. Jim Hoofstetter, one of the founders of Tiara Exclusives, was a former president of Indiana Glass. Between 1970 and 1998, a majority of Tiara's glassware was made from Indiana molds (or other molds acquired by Lancaster Colony, Indiana's parent company) and most of it was produced at the Dunkirk factory. The Sandwich pattern was Tiara's most successful line, continuing to be sold throughout the entire span of Tiara's existence. It consisted primarily of pieces originally made by Indiana from the 1920s on, supplemented by additional items from Duncan & Miller's Early American Sandwich pattern.

By the time that Indiana discontinued handmade operations sometime in the mid-1980s, some Tiara pieces were also being produced by other companies, most notably the Fostoria Glass Company (which had also become a Lancaster Colony division around 1987), the Fenton Art Glass Company and the L. E. Smith Glass Company. Both Fostoria and Fenton produced candlesticks for Tiara from Indiana molds as well as from their own molds and other companies may have done so as well.

In late 2002 all glassware manufacture was discontinued at the Dunkirk factory and consolidated in Lancaster Colony's Sapulpa, Oklahoma, plant (formerly Bartlett-Collins).

In 2003 Fenton Art Glass, Williamstown, WV, purchased more than 2,000 molds from the Indiana Glass Company. A number of the new items, including a candy box and plume vase, will debut in 2004. Items made by Fenton with molds from another company are denoted with a script F inside an oval. Fenton has traced its Fish Tray back to 1872, when it was registered with the US Patent Office by Atterbury & Co.

In 2004 Lancaster Colony's Sapulpa, Oklahoma, plant (formerly Bartlett-Collins) was closed ending a era of glass.

As of November 19, 2007 Indiana Glass Company and E.O. Brody Company were acquired by Anchor Hocking Company. Indiana Glass Company and E.O. Brody Company represents the combined operations of Indiana Glass Company and E.O. Brody Company. Indiana Glass Company manufactures tabletop and decorative glassware containers for the retail, private label, candle and floral markets. E.O. Brody Company markets and distributes vases made by Indiana Glass to wholesale florists, large floral buying groups and flower shops. The companies are based in Cleveland and Cincinnati, Ohio.

On Saturday, Feb. 16, 2008 Syndicate Sales Inc., in Kokomo, Ind. officially acquired the E.O. Brody Company. Syndicate also bought the retail florist portion of Indiana Glass from The Anchor Hocking Co.
“We are truly excited to welcome the Brody product line to the Syndicate Sales family,” said Del Demaree, Jr., chairman and CEO. “We firmly believe it will be better for the floral industry to have both Syndicate and Brody glassware delivered weekly on ‘Big Green’ trucks.” Syndicate Sales, Inc. was founded in 1946 by Del Demaree, Sr. and his wife Fern. The company is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of more than 1500 floral products.
David Garcia, president of the Pete Garcia Company, which represented Brody in about half of the U.S., said via e-mail that his company has been advised not to comment on the acquisition. “We are seeking a resolve to this situation, which we were made aware of for the first time on Monday, Feb. 18, 2008. Our efforts will be to continue to support our wholesale floral customers in order to satisfy the entire industry.
“The E.O. Brody Company was founded by Ernest Oscar Brody in Cleveland back in 1958. The company exclusively sold utility glass floral containers to florists as well as through wholesalers who would turn around and market the product to florists.
The Lancaster Colony Corporation of Columbus, Ohio, took over the E.O. Brody Company in 1971. The company name was switched to “Brody Company” in 1988 after merging with Lancaster Colony’s housewares division in Cincinnati. we have on details on the acquisition from Syndicate Sales, including confirmation on whether the company has retained the Brody Company’s employees; representatives from Brody had not returned calls.
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