Pricey lead crystal manufacturer Steuben Glass will close the factory doors and end the American jobs of sixty craftsmen in Corning, New York. What a shame to see perhaps the last premium American producer of fine luxury gifts, crystal tableware, glasses, and figurines shut down. Another industry on the ropes.
Steuben opened in 1903 but moved into the clear glass and crystal manufacturing in the early 30′s. The company’s founder sold to Corning Glass
and continued with Corning as creative designer. Since then Steuben crystal products have been sold as gifts and coveted worldwide by kings, queens, pope’s and presidents. American Presidents from Truman to Reagan routinely gave heads of state crystal bowls and figurines
to visiting heads of states. Queen Elizabeth, Princess Diana, and the Pope are merely some of the elite owners of fine Steuben products.
Steuben will stop retail operations worldwide including the closing of its world famous Madison Avenue at 61st street, New York City location. A fixture in the Crystal District the impressive retail location already has Michael Kors waiting to move into the prime real estate location. Steuben will also close its factory store in the Corning Glass Museum. Museum operations are not expected to be effected by the closing.
Corning Glass sold Steuben to Schottenstein Stores Corporation in 2008. Schottenstein owns more than 50 malls plus major interests in American Eagle, DSW, and Va;ie City. Strange that a discount operator and real estate developer would choose to buy the pricey manufacturer of crystal products. Some say it is hard to discount a $30,000 glass sculpture. Stranger still is Corning Glass has purchased the rights to Steuben’s brand name. Corning indicates no current plans to revive the manufacturing.
Steuben as an American manufacturer will be sadly missed as the United States works through the jobs bill to create American jobs. Steuben had lost money for at least the last five years so their closing was not without rumors. Corning leased the manufacturing plant to Steuben. The lease was set to expire in 2012.
Filed under: Manufacturers · Tags: corning glass, crystal, figurines, gift, glass, lead crystal, New York, news, schottenstein, steuben glass