Blenko Glass, The Beginning:
Company Closed and New Starts:
In 1921 one more time proved to be the charm with the start of William Blenko's newest company, The Eureka Glass Company. The company produced glass for stained glass windows, but with slow sales during the beginning of the depression, the company decided to expand offerings to include art glass and tableware.
The company's name was officially changed to The Blenko Glass Company in 1930.
Blenko is still the only company in the United States to produce antique glass panels.
A Family Business:
What to Look For:
Pink is the rarest of all Blenko glass and the most sought after by collectors.
The best way to identify authentic pieces is by referencing one of the catalogs produced by the company. Catalogs have been reproduced and are available to purchase.
Prices and Pictures:
Online Auction Prices:
- Orange 5929L decanter designed by Wayne Husted, 37"
Lime Green 5929L decanter (as above)
- Mulberry 5815 decanter, 16"
- Tangerine/orange vase, 6427, 24 1/2"
Books and Catalogs:
There have been several books written, a collectors club started in 2003 and loads of Internet interest over the past few years, all adding up to new collectors looking for Blenko.
Blenko Announces Shutting Down of Production:
The Blenko Glass Company web site has an announcement that they have resumed production.
Press Release - January 20, 2009
Blenko Glass Company announced today that it is shutting down production and is discussing with its counsel whether it should consider filing for bankruptcy. The Blenko Visitor’s Center will continue to remain open. The Milton based manufacturer of hand made glass was sued by Big Two Mile, its former gas supplier, four years ago because of a disagreement about the payments due for gas used at the factory. A court found in favor of Big Two Mile and entered a judgment against Blenko for more than $500,000 in September of 2005. Several proposals for settlement of the case were made by Blenko; none of the proposals was accepted.
Over the past three years members of the Blenko Family were in contact with members of the Maier Family who are the owners of Big Two Mile. Blenko was led to understand that Big Two Mile would not take steps to shut down Blenko. Relying on those assurances Walter Blenko of Pittsburgh PA and Don Blenko of Wellesley MA invested more than 2 million dollars in Blenko in an effort to return the company to profitability. In recent months the company’s losses had been reduced and Blenko management was looking forward to seeing a positive cash flow in the company’s operations.
On January 15, 2009, Big Two Mile took steps to seize “all amounts, deposits, and moneys” in the Blenko Glass bank accounts including its payroll and withholding accounts. Blenko first learned of Big Two Mile’s action on January 23, when Blenko’s bank reported that the bank accounts had been emptied.
Blenko had issued a check on that day to pay for gas that it used in its glass making furnaces. When Blenko learned its funds had been seized it was able to recover the check which was already in the mail. Because of nonpayment Blenko’s gas supplier has refused to supply gas for the glass making process.
Blenko employs approximately 50 employees. Walter Blenko, President of Blenko Glass, said “I want to thank and pay tribute to the many loyal employees of Blenko Glass who worked diligently and faithfully against bad economic conditions to keep the company operating and producing world renowned Blenko Glass up until the last day.”
For further information please contact: Walter Blenko, President, or Katie Trippe, Assistant Vice President, at (304) 743-9081.