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American Decorative Arts
Inventor: Jean-Pierre Colne, American, born France, 1807–after 1880
Manufacturer (blank): Brooklyn Flint Glass Works, American, 1824–1868
Manufacturer cutter: Joseph Stouvenel & Company, American, 1851–1857

Decanter

1851–55

Blown and machine-cut lead glass

decanter with stopper: 13 3/8 × 4 1/4 in. (33.97 × 10.8 cm)
decanter: 9 3/4 × 4 1/4 in. (24.77 × 10.8 cm)
stopper: 5 1/4 × 1 3/4 in. (13.34 × 4.45 cm)
Purchased with a gift from William Bates III, B.A. 1971, and Kay Bates in honor of William Bates, Jr.
2015.78.1a-b
This decanter was made using a cutting machine patented by Jean-Pierre Colné in 1851. Colné trained at Baccarat in France before bringing his family to New York. He employed his machine at the Vesey Street glass factory owned by Joseph Stouvenel until 1855 when Colné moved to Illinois to establish his own company. Elaborately cut glass domestic objects were a sign of elegance and sophistication for nineteenth-century consumers. Their fabrication required highly skilled labor, which meant they were costly. Colné’s invention was an attempt to partially automate the production process. His machine did little to lower the cost of the glass objects but it did allow for highly regular and smaller cuts, which refracted the light and gave his objects dazzling surfaces.
Geography: 
Made in New York, New York
Status: 
Not on view
Culture: 
American
Period: 
19th century
Classification: 
Containers - Glass
Provenance: 

Ian Simmonds, Dobbs Ferry, New York

Bibliography: 

“Acquisitions July 1, 2015–June 30, 2016,” https://artgallery.yale.edu/sites/default/files/files/Pub_Bull_acquisitions_2016.pdf (accessed December 1, 2016).

John Stuart Gordon, American Glass: The Collections at Yale (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2018), 162–63, no. 84.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.