When Frederick Carder (1863-1963) visited Corning, New York, in 1903, he met with Thomas G. Hawkes, who had been operating a successful glass-cutting firm, T. G. Hawkes & Company, in Corning since 1880. At the encouragement of Hawkes, Carder moved from England to Corning, and together they founded Steuben Glass Works in 1903.
Initially, Steuben Glass Works focused on producing blanks for T. G. Hawkes & Co.; however, Carder continued to experiment with color, and in 1904, he registered "Aurene" with the U.S. patent office.
Steuben Glass Works continued to expand in the years before the First World War. It continued to produce blanks for Hawkes, but also produced decorative glass in a range of colors, as well as cut glass and lighting.
In January 1918, Steuben Glass Works became a division of Corning Glass Works. (Carder remained with the Steuben Division until 1932.)
Image: [Exterior of Steuben Glass Works buildings], 1907, Rakow Research Library 135783
In January 1918, Steuben Glass Works became a division of Corning Glass Works. Frederick Carder remained head of the Steuben Division until 1932.
In 1933, Arthur A. Houghton, Jr., became the managing director of Steuben. Steuben started to focus on producing clear crystal--a departure from Steuben under Carder's direction.
In 1951, Steuben moved from downtown Corning to the Corning Glass Center complex, which also included the new Corning Museum of Glass, which allowed visitors to view parts of the production process.
Steuben continued production under Corning Incorporated in a building next to The Corning Museum of Glass until 2008. The year, Steuben was sold to the Schottenstein Stores Corp. of Columbus, Ohio, as part of the newly formed Schottenstein Luxury Group.
In 2011, the Steuben factory and New York store were closed. The Steuben brand was repurchased by Corning Incorporated.
Image: CMoG 90.4.244 Gazelle Bowl (Steuben, Waugh)
In 2013, Corning Incorporated licensed The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) to oversee the production of new Steuben and to sell it in the Museum shop. All proceeds from the sale of Steuben support the Museum, a not-for-profit cultural institution.
In 2015, the original Steuben factory was extensively renovated to become the Amphitheater Hot Shop at CMoG. Read more about the Steuben/CMoG connection on the CMoG blog: "'On These Shoulders We Stand': Preserving Glassmaking Tradition in the Amphitheater Hot Shop" (March 19, 2015).
A more detailed timeline of Steuben history is available on the Steuben website (www.steuben.com/timeline).
The Rakow Research Library has the following digital collections related to Steuben Glass:
|Steuben Animals -- Digital material on Steuben glass animals.|
|Steuben Publications -- Digitized trade catalogs, books, and more, published by Steuben Glass.|
Steuben Records of Gifts -- Digitized records detailing Steuben items purchased by the President of the United States and other dignitaries to be used as presentation gifts.