Date of Award

Spring 2019

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Department

History

First Advisor

Allison Marsh

Abstract

Commercial markets within the United States were changing rapidly in the nineteenth century as improved transportation and efficient methods of mass production made goods available to a wider portion of the population than ever before. The glass market was one of many that changed drastically from the opening of the nineteenth century and on into the early twentieth century. Iridescent art glass, whether cheap pressed glass or expensive blown glass, provides a small window into how advertising and purchasing habits changed and why. The burgeoning middle class was looking for new ways to proclaim respectability and enhance their living space. Not everyone could afford to beautify their homes and proclaim their status with beautiful handmade Tiffany glass which was the impetus for cheaper versions art glass to be made and sold. The desire for affordable, beautiful objects has not disappeared from twenty-first century society. Designers and entrepreneurs still seek methods of bringing beautiful objects of good design to the widest portion of the population possible.

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