Written by Bill Meier
A number of insulator manufacturers also produced other glassware, including fruit jars. Production of these jars may have been as early as the 1850's, and continued until 1900 or beyond.
For a great summary of the history of many of the insulator manufactures that also produced fruit jars, be sure to read Tom G. Moulton's report Kissin Cousins - A History of Insulator and Fruit Jar Manufacturers
Click on any small jar to see an enlarged photograph.
This is a very rare Brookfield fruit jar. It has a ground lip, glass top, and an iron yoke
clamp with a thumbscrew. The jar is Red Book No. 8
number 519. The embossing on the jar includes "55 FULTON ST. N.Y." which was
used by Brookfield from 1868 to 1882. This photograph shows
the embossing more clearly.
The Globe fruit jar closure was patented on May 25, 1886 by Robert Hemingray, and most
Globe jars can be found in pint, quart, and half gallon sizes, in shades of light/ice
aqua, and orange amber. These Globe jars are Red Book No. 8
number 1123. Here is a photograph of a nice collection of
Globe jars. Also, the observant collector will notice the distinct "prism
script" style embossing on the left lid, and the later "stamped" style
embossing on the right lid in this photograph. Both of
these styles of embossing can also be seen on H.G.CO. and early Hemingray embossed
More than 25 years previous to the Globe patent, Robert Hemingray was granted a patent on
September 18, 1860, for a "mold for glass jars". These early jars are known as
"wax sealer" jars, because wax was used to seal the lid on the jar. You can see
the lip in this photograph of one of these jars, as well
as the embossed patent date. This jar is Red Book No. 8
Continuing in the development of improvements for fruit jars, Ralph Gray and Robert
Hemingray were granted another patent on June 9, 1863 for an "Improvement in Caps for
Fruit-Jars". This improvement consisted of an early form of a thread cap; the cap
consisted of a sheet metal or zinc collar with a helical wire band rolled into the metal
to form a thread to mate with a coarse screw-thread formed around the neck of the jar.
Another feature of this patent was two projecting lugs, firmly soldered to the cap, to
allow a plain bar of iron to be used as a wrench to screw down or remove the cap. Some of
these jars have the patent date stamped on the metal collar, some are completely unmarked,
and others, like the one in this photograph are embossed
ROYAL on the jar. The wire band and lugs can be seen in this close-up
photograph of the jar top. This jar is Red Book No. 8
In addition, the Hemingray Glass Company produced a number of Mason jars, patented
November 30th, 1858. The conventional "MASON'S PATENT NOV. 30TH 1858" appears on
the front of these jars, but the H.G.CO. monogram is embossed on the reverse of the jar.
One of the styles of the H.G.CO. monogram can been seen in this photograph
of the reverse of a Mason's jar. This jar is Red Book No. 8
Additional information on fruit jars can be found in the The Red Book of Fruit Jars, No. 8 and The Fruit Jar Works.
Here is an excellent Primer on Fruit Jars on the Bottles and Extra's site..
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Last updated Tuesday, February 2, 1999