Fairmount Glass Works / Fairmount Glass Company

Fairmount Glass Works/Fairmount Glass Company

Fairmount, Indiana (1889-1906)  & Indianapolis, Indiana (c.1906-1968).

The town of Fairmount, Indiana, located northeast of Indianapolis on Route 26,  is probably best-known as the early home of actor James Dean (1931-1955, East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, Giant), but not so well known is the fact that Fairmount was an early and fairly prosperous “glass factory town”, especially in the late 1880s to the early 1900s.  A number of glass companies operated there, including King City Glass Works (making electrical insulators with “K. C. G. W.” markings), Marion Fruit Jar & Bottle Company (two of their 3 plants located there for a period of time), and the Fairmount Glass Works.  

Fairmount Glass Works was started in 1888 or 1889.  Initial investors included John Rau, W.C. Winslow,  Frank Taylor and Charles Tigner, although some conflicting information exists on who was the “principal” proprietor in the very earliest days of the firm’s formation.  By 1897 (and probably quite some time beforehand) “Winslow & Rau” were the two principal partners involved. A letterhead (dated 1897) exists stating “Fairmount Glass Works / Located in the Natural Gas Belt / Winslow & Rau / Manufacturers of Fruit Jars, Bottles, Etc / Fairmount, Ind” . This is reproduced on page 26 of  Indiana Glass Factories Notes by Dick Roller (1994).  

 A new glass factory was built in Indianapolis and the manufacture of glass was moved entirely to that location approximately 1906.  The exact “official” name “Fairmount Glass Works” or “Fairmount Glass Company” was changed several times over the years, (including a short span during the 1960s as “Fairmount Glass Corporation”) but I have not attempted to include a precise timeline of those name changes on this page. 

At least 3, possibly four identification marks were used on their containers:

1) F G Co : As far as I am aware, this mark is not confirmed to have been used by Fairmount.  Julian Toulouse (Bottle Makers and their Marks, 1971)  illustrates this as their mark, used c. 1889-1898. It remains to be seen if this information is accurate.  In any case, I am listing the mark here, but with a note that I don’t know for a fact that it was ever used by Fairmount!  

Fairmount Glass Works

FGW mark used by Fairmount Glass Works

2) F G W: Period of use uncertain…………. perhaps from c.1898 to approximately 1920?

3) F:   A plain “F” was used circa 1920 to 1933.    (Note: Shards of certain bottles (such as hand-blown strap-side whiskey flasks) with an “F” on the base, undoubtedly of a much earlier vintage, have been found at the site of the Lyndeborough Glass Company, South Lyndeborough, New Hampshire (1866-1888) and obviously are not related to Fairmount.  In those cases the “F” may be a “shop letter” and was possibly used by a specific group of workers, i.e. “shop” of glassblowers at Lyndeboro.  This is also true of certain early handmade strapside flasks with an “S” on the base which are found at Lyndeboro).

 

F in Hexagon - Fairmount Glass

4) F in a hexagon:  Used circa 1933 to 1968.  Commonly seen on the bottom of many amber-colored (and clear) medicine, chemical, and other types of generic “packer” jars and bottles that were produced in very large quantities during the 1940s, 1950s and ’60s.  

Fairmount Glass Company produced some of the amber figural “fish bottles” of the 1920s which originally contained Cod Liver Oil or a similar product.  Those bottles usually carry the plain “F” mark on the base along with mold and bottle style numbers.

 Eventually, Fairmount had 3 separate factory locations including the main plant at Indianapolis, another one at Gas City, Indiana, and a third plant in Atlanta, GA.    In 1968 Fairmount was purchased to became part of Glass Containers, Inc. based in Fullerton, California. (see G C marks on this page.)

This page is under construction……..more info to be added.

Click here to return to the Glass Bottle Marks pages.

Please click here to go to my Homepage.

6 Responses to Fairmount Glass Works / Fairmount Glass Company

  1. Neal Westphal says:

    I have what appears to be old glass bottle about 6 inches tall and about 1-1/2 x 2 inches wide at the base. It has a fluted neck for a cork stopper. On the bottom is the Fairmount Glass Works as shown in example 1 with the F, large G, and W. Does this marking confirm it is Fairmount? If so is it old?

    • David says:

      Hi Neal,
      Yes, it was made by Fairmount Glass Works. Yes, it is old (but that might depend on what any persons’ definition of “OLD” is!!)

      ~David

  2. Patty Stacy says:

    My aunt, Martha Waterfill, worked at the Indianapolis location in the late 50’s or early 60’s. She retired with bad health during that period of time. She had a 2 sons during that time, one which she had at a home for unwed mothers, and another she raised until she passed away. The son born in the home for unwed mothers was adopted, but found us, his biological family about 8 years ago, and discovered he had a brother. They have met. No husband was ever known of at that time. I am looking for more information on her when she was there, such as men she might have dated. If you can help me in this area or know of anyone who worked with her, please let me know. Both sons are in their 60’s, and they are looking for information regarding their fathers. Thank you.

    Patty Stacy

  3. Libby and Jerry Caudill says:

    I think my grandfather worked in the Indianapolis factory. Probably 1940’s. He brought home a green glass cane that he made there. My husband’s mother worked there in the late 1950’s. Thank you for this site.
    .,
    ..

Comments~