Lee Manufacturing - circa 1915
A word about dating - Lee's catalogues do not have a date on them, so we have used our judgement to give an approximate date of issue. We know that this catalogue must be from 1915 or later, as there are two Bank Testimonials printed in it showing this date. However, we have another catalogue which has the same testimonials inside but is clearly from a much later date (as the prices are considerably higher!). We have explained our detective work on another page.
Some big pieces and sets featured in this catalogue: Imperial and Fenton Carnival Glass predominated.
A full page was dedicated to Imperial's Lustre Rose water set and 4 piece table set (described as a "Tea Set").
It's interesting to see how the illustrator tried to capture the iridescence of Carnival Glass: as they said in the ad, "We have endeavoured to show you the wonderful colors in this picture, but the set itself is far more gorgeous than we can illustrate or describe. It seems to posses hundreds of different shades - reflecting all the colors of the rainbow."
An Imperial Fashion punch set ... "in the famous 'rainbow' tinted iridescent high-art glassware". Such praise.
With characteristic advertising aplomb, they also said it was being made just for them - in fact, Fashion was one of Imperial's most prolific lines!
The star of the catalogue
This water set was given great prominence - it is an enamelled Cherries and Little Flowers in blue Carnival Glass. The unanswered question is - Fenton or Northwood? Both companies made this pattern. There are ways to tell them apart, and the artist's illustration above suggests Northwood, because of the eleven flowers around the cherries on the pitcher. The catalogue description is fulsome: “This exquisite 7 piece Lemonade or Water set contains one extra large size massive 3½ quart pitcher and six full size tumblers to match. Made of strong royal blue glass in iridescent finish; richly hand painted.” It was a free “premium” to Lee’s agents and they would receive it when they submitted an order of $10 or more.
This Northwood contribution to the catalogue was a rather lonely looking Bushell Basket.
But it was talked up! "VERY RICH", "glistens with rich beauty", and "for bon bons, candies, olives, nuts, etc."
All shaving requisites provided in one convenient Shaving Outfit, complete with a blue Fenton Orange Tree mug.
The catalogue was aimed entirely at women buyers, and made it clear that the set provided all that a man might want, be it their "husband, brother, son or beau." It was another premium when the agent submitted an order for $10 or more.