A GLASS MUSEUM AND TO MASSAPOISETT

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A glass couple relaxing in glass chairs in front of a bookcase of glass books is an unusual piece for any museum, but a perfect fit for the new glass museum in New Bedford, Massachusetts Located at 61 Wamsutta St. A bit hard to find,  it shares an entrance with a wonderful antique store and is well worth the time to find it.

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I will parade for you some pieces I found particularly beautiful, and/or unusual like this golden fruit bowl.

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A blue plate.

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A hand-painted pitcher with gold accents.

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A painted vase.

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Clear and colored glass mixed in the same piece.

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A goblet you wouldn’t drink from. So why make it so?  There is something so appealing about seeing light through prisms of cut glass whether colored or clear. All glass lovers will know what I’m talking about.

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I haven’t room nor money to assemble a collection of pieces like these, so I collect pictures of beautiful items.

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And, again, the unusual, a crystal chair with red cushions and arm rests. The makers did it just to prove you could, but it caught the eye of an Eastern buyer and they became popular sellers to wealthy estate owners from India and Asia.

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When this piece was donated to the museum, the owners said it was a fountain but they could never get it to work. The curator here figured it out and you can go to the New Bedford Glass Museum website and see it work.

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Some glass ware was made in the 1800’s with bits of uranium when no one knew of its danger. Here it is contained in a case with black lights showing how it glows. One glass expert explained to us that people in those days when they discovered this glowing property made it into  paint for clock hands. The women who painted the hands would lick the brush because saliva added a sticky quality to the paint, not knowing they got sick and died from the practice as did the glass workers making the glass.

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They own a huge collection of uranium ware, this case plus another.

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They have unusual art pieces like this iridescent glass painting that changes color and hue with the light.

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The same painting now half in shadow by holding a magazine above it.

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Isn’t this glass spider perfect?

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It looks like this glass has been welded together.

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The museum has many glass maker’s tools and shows the process of glass making. The lid above is shown with it’s wooden mold.

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From the wooden mold, a plaster of paris mold is made. A metal mold is made from the plaster before the molten glass can be poured into it.

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This gun is blown glass where it is blown into the mold. These were cheap pieces filled with candy and sealed with paper. I remember miniatures like these filled with candy when I was a kid.

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Of course, most glass made was utilitarian like this light globe.

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And before the light bulb was invented, whale oil lamps lit up the dark.

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Kids played with glass marbles.

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Glass perfume bottles came in many shapes. Donna, Jim and I enjoyed the museum while Bob taught a morning class. If you want to see a slideshow of many more pictures, click the link below:

https://picasaweb.google.com/106530979158681190260/201381GlassMuseumNewBdfrd

After lunch, Bob returned and we all headed out to Massapoisett where Bob’s sons both live and were raised. His oldest son, Danny has a beautiful daughter just graduated from High School and headed off to college.IMG_2447 (Copy)

Marissa was the only one home when we arrived for our visit. She got us each a bottle of water and asked about our travels.

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For an 18 year old, she has done a good bit of traveling herself. She has hiked in the Grand Canyon, she went to France and climbed the Eifel Tower. She has met some famous people and appeared on television. She recently went camping for the first time where it was necessary to sleep on the ground on a tarp with a mattress pad and a sleeping bag. This is her wall of accomplishments. IMG_2451 (Copy)
Her grandparents, Bob and Donna Parker, are very proud of her.

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She excells at competitions that involve the blind. Here she is pictured after winning the Braille contest. She and Helen Keller have a lot of personality in common.

After or visit, Bob gave us a tour of the community of Massapoisett where he lived for many years.IMG_2457 (Copy)

This is his son’s boat. He loves the water, the area, the boats, clamming, fishing. In fact, when he lived and taught school here, he volunteered as a shellfish warden. He loved the job because he was often rewarded with a bucket of quahogs. IMG_2458 (Copy)

Like Murphys, it has a major hotel.

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Years ago, people built their summer cabins here.

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Now those cabins are being replaced by million-dollar mansions.

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Bob took us to see all of his old haunts and then we had dinner at the Chowder House.

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A perfect day with lovely weather much appreciated as I type and look at pouring rain through my window this morning.

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