Kokomo Opalescent Glass (KOG) has been in continuous operation at our current location of 1310 S. Market Street in Kokomo, Indiana since 1888. Charles Edward Henry was born in Paris France in 1846. Mr. Henry migrated to the United States in the early 1880’s. He was a good glass chemist and he formed Henry Art Glass in New Rochelle New York in 1883. Henry Art Glass made glass buttons, novelties, and opalescent glass rods. While producing glass products Mr. Henry met many glass artists in the New York area including Louis Tiffany. By early 1889 Opalescent Glass Works employed over 50 people and was the only opalescent glass manufacturer west of the Appalachian Mountains. In early 1889 Henry sent 30 sheets of opalescent glass to Paris France for display at the Paris Exposition (World’s Fair). On the Ocean journey to France 16 sheets were broken. The remaining 14 sheets that arrived was sufficient for him to win a Gold Medal for the glass and also obtain over $50,000 in sheet glass orders.
Mr. Henry’s problems started upon his return from France. The original bill of $3,800 for the construction of the plant along with his trip to France and several other bills went unpaid. On January 10, 1890 the builder of the factory filed a lien on the plant for the amount of the unpaid balance. In a futile attempt to retain control of the plant on January 29, 1890 Mr. Henry sold the factory to the plant manager for $1.00. Three days later he married the 26 year old daughter of the plant manager. The wedding celebration was held at the plant and described as a gala affair.
On March 11, 1890 Opalescent Glass Works went into receivership due to unpaid bills. Later in the April 24, 1890 edition of the Kokomo Dispatch reported Mr. Henry was jailed due to violent behavior. The article also pointed out that Henry had developed a drinking problem. He also started writing bad checks.
On April 28, 1890 Charles Edward Henry was admitted to the Indianapolis Insane Asylum. He died there two years later at the age of 46. (Kog.com, 2017).
In 1939 Kokomo purchased a machine from Peltier Glass and began making marbles from leftover glass. KOG used their own company labels for boxes and bags but the production of marbles did not take firm hold at KOD and sometime between about 1942 and 1945, the marble machine was sold back to ("Kokomo Opalescent Glass Company, Inc.", 2017).
History of Kokomo Opalescent Glass | Stained Glass | Custom Glass. (2017). Kog.com. Retrieved 9 November 2017, from https://www.kog.com/history.html
Kokomo Opalescent Glass Company, Inc.. (2017). Joemarbles.com. Retrieved from http://www.joemarbles.com/2manufacturers%20history%20pages/12Kokomo/Kokomo.htm