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The Collectics Antiques Information & Education pages are designed to further knowledge of antiques, collectibles, collecting styles, periods, artists, designers, and manufacturers of fine and decorative arts. To learn more, our Antique Collector Bookstore lists only the best collector books and price guides, complied by surveys of top antique dealers and auction houses. For a different shopping experience, you can also browse our featured selections in a fun new way with the Antique Price Guides Slideshow or see current bestsellers by using Collector Books Topic Search.

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The Great Depression in the United States was a time of severe hardship for the majority of the population. Financial institutions closed or became insolvent while millions of American citizens were out of work. Depression glass is the generalized term to refer to inexpensive colored pressed glass made by machine which was manufactured from the 1920s until the late 1930s in the United States. True depression glass was preceeded by higher quality pressed glass incorporating hand work such as that produced by the Fostoria company. Today, lines such as Fostoria and Imperial are more commonly known as "elegant" glass. Inexpensive manufacturing techniques for true Depression glass allowed interesting patterns, large production and affordable prices, perfect for the Depression years market. Nevertheless, quality was not consistently high and the glass often had flaws in the production such as air bubbles. 

"Pressed" glass techniques enabled these manufacturing efficiencies and contrasted with hand blown and cut glass. For pressing, molten glass is poured into molds of various patterns and then pressed to assume the shape of the mold. At the same time molds gave rise to many different patterns and shapes, the colors and iridescence of many pieces contributed to their popularity. Early patterns were etched, but hobnail glass that first appeared in 1930 was the first "hit" pattern. Families spent their money on a wide variety of goods and services which included free glassware, so by everyday spending for necessities families were able to collect whole sets to use and enjoy. Even boxes of oatmeal would contain pieces of Depression glass. The glass was also sold at an amazing variety of department stores and other sales outlets, at prices affordable enough that even the lower classes were able to enjoy attractive glassware previously reserved only for the wealthy. Depression glass came in most every color, and particularly during the late 20s and early 30s it became part of the marketing of everything from consumer goods to gas and bank accounts. Its popularity helped to stimulate demand once again for consumer goods and household purchases, and it helped the country emerge from the Depression. Well known manufacturers of Depression glassware include Anchor-Hocking, Federal, MacBeth-Evans, Jeanette, and many more.

Ever been fooled by a fake or a seller that didn't deliver the goods as described? At Collectics, we authenticate and stand behind everything we sell, at prices "30% below your local antique shop" according to Collectibles Guide 2010. Please browse our main Antiques & Collectibles Mall to find a treat for yourself or a great gift for others, all with free shipping. Thanks for visiting and shopping at Collectics!

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Buy a wide variety of period Depression glass on the Collectics Glass & Crystal pages, or search the entire site for great antiques, collectibles, and crafts for every collector!

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Mauzy's Depression Glass: A Photographic Reference With Prices (Schiffer Book for Collectors) Morgantown Glass: From Depression Glass Through the 1960s (Schiffer Book for Collectors)
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