I love glass. I always have. When it’s worked into interesting shapes, I find it hard to resist. I’m not the only one to feel that way, which is why so many glass items are collectible.
Glass insulators have always fascinated me with their many shapes and colors. I haven’t seen a lot of them outside of junk shops, so imagine how happy I was when I leaned out the window of my office and saw this:
Certain glass insulators are quite collectible. I was curious about mine, so I looked it up (you can see in the picture that it’s a Hemingray-20). Assuming I identified it correctly, it’s worth $3-$5. Jackpot!
People who collect glass insulators are very serious about their hobby and there seem to be some really good websites out there. I found everything I needed to know about Hemingray insulators at Hemingray.info and got the price estimate at Grampa Mac’s Insulator Empriorium.
I only stayed at those sites long enough to identify my insulator. I didn’t dare look too long at those beguiling bits of glass or read too much about their history, because if I got hooked on the subject then I’d have to collect them. Then I’d spend all day every day at eBay, half of it buying insulators and the other half selling things to make room for my new collection.
I jest, but such things have been known to happen before. Take for example the case of Willys Jeep.
I’ve had this cute little glass jeep since I was a kid. I owned the thing for years and never thought much about it. Then, one day, I was sitting at my computer and had the brilliant idea to look up Willys Jeep on the Internet. I knew there had to be some sort of story behind it, and there was.
Willys Jeep is a candy container. As used to plastic as we are now, it’s hard to imagine small items like candy containers being made from glass, but that’s how it was. And, because they were made in a variety of shapes, like animals and buildings and vehicles, kids used them as toys after they finished the candy.
I looked at picture after picture of glittering candy containers on eBay and I fell in love. I just had to buy more. I stuck to the transportation theme, buying only trains, planes, automobiles, fire engines, tanks, and boats. That may sound limiting, but it really wasn’t. To buy one of every type would have cost a fortune, because there were so many and some were exceptionally rare. I only bought the cheap ones, but I still spent plenty.
Years later, I still love all my antique glass dust collectors, but I’m wary of the collecting bug. That’s why I will look out my window every once in a while and really enjoy the sight of my glass insulator, because it’s the only one I’m ever going to own.