Sunday, March 20, 2011

Page 6: Ariel Gunther & the “Antique” Method of Flat Glass Production

PHOTO: Glencairn Archives
During this period Raymond Pitcairn approached a young man fresh from the Bryn Athyn High School named Ariel Gunther with the offer, “If you’re willing to spend your life making glass, we’ll train you how to do it”. David Smith and Ariel Gunther worked together for the next 20 years. 
PHOTO: Glencairn Archives
They produced flat glass in the “antique method” by gathering glass on a blow pipe and spinning out roundels or by making cylinders in the muff method which they cut open and flattened at the furnace to create sheet glass. 
The Roundel Method

The Muff Method
In the 20 years that the factory was in operation Gunther and Smith produced enough glass to glaze Bryn Athyn Cathedral and the windows in Raymond Pitcairn’s home, Glencairn. 
Bryn Athyn Cathedral
The impressive stockpile of glass stored in the basement of Bryn Athyn Cathedral against future repairs remains as mute evidence of the scale of their production.
Cache from Bryn Athyn Glassworks

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