Friday, June 30, 2017

Ruby Red Flash Souvenir Glass

Helen and Bertha Smith's Ruby Red Flash souvenir glass
A short time after my mother-in-law, Mary Athya Murphy, passed away in 2006, my father-in-law gave these two pieces of Ruby Red Flash souvenir glass to me. He told me that Mary wanted me to have them, I assume because of the work I had done on the Smith family tree, which she had helped me with.

The large cup belonged to Mary’s maternal aunt Helen Margaret Smith. Helen died in 1913 so Mary never knew her. Helen’s cup is 3 ¼ inches tall and 2 ¾ inches wide. As you can see, the top part is smooth red glass while the bottom and handle are clear glass with a decorative heart band. The bottom of the cup has a star pattern. The name “Helen” and the year “1904” are etched on the front side of the cup. Helen would have been 9 years old in 1904.

Bottom view of Bertha's
toothpick holder
The small piece, probably a toothpick holder, belonged to Mary’s mother Bertha Edna Smith Athya. It’s much smaller than Helen’s cup at 2 ¼ inches tall and 2 inches wide. The colors are the same as the cup. The top has a scalloped edge and the bottom has a diamond pattern with a raised dot in the center. The pattern on the bottom of the toothpick holder reminds me of a geometric design I used to make with a Spirograph. The name “Bertha” and the year “1910” are etched on the side. Bertha would have been 12 years old in 1910.

Both the cup and toothpick holder have a few small spots on the red part of the glass but are otherwise in good condition.

My sister once told me these were popular souvenir items sold at traveling fairs during the early 20th century.

Side view of Helen's cup

Bottom view of Helen's cup

Helen Margaret Smith

Bertha Edna Smith

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