Blenko Ruby

where can i find out about a Blenko ruby red cat paperweight?

i have a Blenko owl and a cat. i found the owl but can't find any info on the cat could anyone help me?

~William Blenko tried to open a glass factory in Kokomo, Indiana in 1893 but went bankrupt and returned to England in 1903. In 1909, he emigrated to Point Marion, Pa., and he tried again. Once again, his venture went belly-up so he tried a third time, now in Clarksburg, West Virginia. Three times was not charmed and Blenko was blanked again. He hooked up with Louis Tiffany for a spell, made a little money and started to make a name in the business.

When he had saved enough, he decided to make a fourth go of it. His wife, Estelle Hotchkiss, great granddaughter Adam Smith, reminded him of a conversation they had had with P.T. Barnum in 1892 when Blenko was organizing the Kokomo operation. Barnum told them that anyone could be an artist, but to be a success, he (Blenko) needed a gimmick (There's a sucker born every minute, remember?) This go 'round, Blenko took Barnum's advice to heart.

Back in March, 1854, Matthew Perry took the fleet of Black Ships to Keelung and extorted a trade agreement with the Kanagawa Shogunate. To commemorate the agreement (and probably to keep Perry's cannons quiet) Kanagawa presented Perry with a jade crane (the emporer's sacred bird) to take back to President Millard Filmore.

On April 29, 1920, Emporer Hirohito turned 20 years of age, the age at which, under Samuri code, Hirohito could rule on his own without "guidance" of the Shogun regency. As a birthday gift (and a publicity stunt) Blenko made a cat from the Schoenklopf Ruby, which he had obtained on the black market after the Bolsheviks had looted Katherine the Great's Winter Palace in St. Petersburg Russia in 1917. The gift was intended to celebrate the opening of Japan, Matthew Perry, and on a more mercenary note, to establish an oriental market for his new business. The yellow journalists of the day, most notably William Randolph Hearst (Estelle Hotchkiss' mother's cousin) picked up the story and Blenko was on the front pages across the country. He then introduced glass paperweight replicas of the Schoenklopf Ruby cat and marketed a few in Tiffany's stores initially, then in greater quantities through other outlets. The Tiffany cats bear Blenko's signature. The cats sold through Saks Fifth Ave bore Blenko's monogram until the merger between Saks and Gimbel's was completed. The cats sold through Bergdorf Goodman bear Japanese characters representing Blenko's name. All others were unmarked and unsigned.

If you have an original, it could be quite valuable, particularly if it includes any of the signatures. The US market is limited, (and ttraditionally undervalued by Western appraisers and insurance adjusters) but the Tiffany cats are particularly rare and there is a huge demand in Japan for these. I don't think I would use it as a paperweight if I were you. I would keep it in a safe deposit box at the very least. Unfortunately, Hirohito didn't value his too much after December 7, 1941, and it was stored in the Imperial Warehouse (something akin to the Smithstonian warehouse outside Washington) in Nagasaki in August 1945. The ruby was presumably melted to glass under the blast of "Fat Man" on the 9th, as it has never been found after the bomb was dropped. My father's uncle was part of the detail assigned by Gen. Douglas MacArthur, under orders of Harry Truman to look for it during the reconstruction and return it to Washington.

Find Blenko Ruby On eBay Below:

Mid century Blenko glasses vintage X4 ruby red retro
Mid century Blenko glasses vintage X4 ruby red retro
$45.00
Vintage Blenko Hand Blown Glass Ruby Red Glass Bottle With Stopper decanter
Vintage Blenko Hand Blown Glass Ruby Red Glass Bottle With Stopper decanter
$77.00
Blenko hand crafted large Ruffle Top Ruby Blown Glass Vase made in USA
Blenko hand crafted large Ruffle Top Ruby Blown Glass Vase made in USA
$29.75
BLENKO RUBY RED GLASS WATER BOTTLE DOUBLE SPOUT DIMPLES BOTH SIDES 825
BLENKO RUBY RED GLASS WATER BOTTLE DOUBLE SPOUT DIMPLES BOTH SIDES 825
$34.00
Early Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Martini Mixer Pitcher 1945 49
Early Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Martini Mixer Pitcher 1945 49
$49.95
Pair Blown Glass Vase Ruby Red Art Bulbous Pigeon Blood Blenko Clear Base LRG
Pair Blown Glass Vase Ruby Red Art Bulbous Pigeon Blood Blenko Clear Base LRG
$65.00
Blenko Clear Beaker Vase with applied Ruby Red Coil Decanter
Blenko Clear Beaker Vase with applied Ruby Red Coil Decanter
$69.00
Vintage Ruby Red Blinko Art Glass Double Spout Water Pitcher Carafe Vase
Vintage Ruby Red Blinko Art Glass Double Spout Water Pitcher Carafe Vase
$31.00
Blenko Ruby Red Plates 2 Original Foil Label 8 1 2
Blenko Ruby Red Plates 2 Original Foil Label 8 1 2
$99.00
Blenko 3748 PredesignerS Ruby Red Vase Smallest of 3 Sizes 7 Inches Tall
Blenko 3748 PredesignerS Ruby Red Vase Smallest of 3 Sizes 7 Inches Tall
$29.00
BLENKO AMBERINA CRACKLE GLASS RUBY RED  YELLOW MID CENTURY BOTTLE Case
BLENKO AMBERINA CRACKLE GLASS RUBY RED YELLOW MID CENTURY BOTTLE Case
$65.00
Blenko Crackle Glass Pitcher Ruby Red Strawberry Pontil Mark Amber Handle 75
Blenko Crackle Glass Pitcher Ruby Red Strawberry Pontil Mark Amber Handle 75
$35.00
Rainbow Glass Viking Glass Ruby Red Decanter Mint
Rainbow Glass Viking Glass Ruby Red Decanter Mint
$89.99
Excellent 6 Crackle Ruby Amberina Wide Mouth Art glass Pitcher BLENKO VTG
Excellent 6 Crackle Ruby Amberina Wide Mouth Art glass Pitcher BLENKO VTG
$22.00
MidCentury Hand Blown Ruby Red Wide Mouth Hour Glass Studio Art Vase
MidCentury Hand Blown Ruby Red Wide Mouth Hour Glass Studio Art Vase
$32.99
Blenko Ruby Red Heavy Textured Book End w American Eagle Sculpure on Face
Blenko Ruby Red Heavy Textured Book End w American Eagle Sculpure on Face
$34.95
VINTAGE 1960s WINSLOW ANDERSON HUSTED BLENKO RUBY RED BOWL 11
VINTAGE 1960s WINSLOW ANDERSON HUSTED BLENKO RUBY RED BOWL 11
$66.00
Vintage Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Pitcher Creamer 35 x 275 Excellent Con
Vintage Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Pitcher Creamer 35 x 275 Excellent Con
$11.99
Lg Vintage 13 1 2  Ruby Red Fluted Glass Vase Blenko
Lg Vintage 13 1 2 Ruby Red Fluted Glass Vase Blenko
$19.99
Blenko Pilgrim Art Glass Crackle RUBY RED Mini Pitcher Creamer Reed Handle
Blenko Pilgrim Art Glass Crackle RUBY RED Mini Pitcher Creamer Reed Handle
$10.00
Vintage Mid Century Blenko Handcraft Ruffled Edge Fluted Ruby Red Art Glass Bowl
Vintage Mid Century Blenko Handcraft Ruffled Edge Fluted Ruby Red Art Glass Bowl
$16.99
Rare Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby Pitcher REGAL LINE WAYNE HUSTED 1960 11 RE
Rare Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby Pitcher REGAL LINE WAYNE HUSTED 1960 11 RE
$89.95
VINTAGE LONG STEM BLENKO ART RUBY GLASS C1950 REGAL STYLE COCKTAIL
VINTAGE LONG STEM BLENKO ART RUBY GLASS C1950 REGAL STYLE COCKTAIL
$19.99
Rainbow Art Glass Co Mid century Ruby Red Decanter body with a Blenko stopper
Rainbow Art Glass Co Mid century Ruby Red Decanter body with a Blenko stopper
$25.00
BLENKO Crackle Glass Vase 55 Ruby Red art
BLENKO Crackle Glass Vase 55 Ruby Red art
$35.00
Pair of Blenko Ruby Pinched Sides Tumblers
Pair of Blenko Ruby Pinched Sides Tumblers
$44.99
Lovely Blenko Large Ruby Cylindrical Crackle Glass Vase New
Lovely Blenko Large Ruby Cylindrical Crackle Glass Vase New
$42.99
Lovely Blenko Vase with Ruby Swirl New
Lovely Blenko Vase with Ruby Swirl New
$34.99
Lovely Blenko Large Ruby Ruffled Center Bowl New
Lovely Blenko Large Ruby Ruffled Center Bowl New
$42.99
Vintage Rainbow Ruby Crackle Decanter with Blenko Stopper
Vintage Rainbow Ruby Crackle Decanter with Blenko Stopper
$42.99
Ruby Red Blenko Wayne Husted
Ruby Red Blenko Wayne Husted
$399.99
LE SMITH Heritage Amberina Glass Oil Lamp MOON  STARS ruby Eagle Burner FINGER
LE SMITH Heritage Amberina Glass Oil Lamp MOON STARS ruby Eagle Burner FINGER
$39.99
Lg Vintage Italian Ruby Red Blown Art Glass Optic DecanterBottle EXC LK
Lg Vintage Italian Ruby Red Blown Art Glass Optic DecanterBottle EXC LK
$9.99
RARE Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby red Tall Pitcher half gallon plus
RARE Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby red Tall Pitcher half gallon plus
$165.00
Vintage BLENKO ART GLASS Crackle Ruby Decanter w Round Stopper hand blown LK
Vintage BLENKO ART GLASS Crackle Ruby Decanter w Round Stopper hand blown LK
$29.99
BLENKO Handcrafted Amethyst Purple BOWL  hand blown ruby red glass bottle
BLENKO Handcrafted Amethyst Purple BOWL hand blown ruby red glass bottle
$30.00
Blenko Ruby  Amber Centerpiece Compote Ruffled
Blenko Ruby Amber Centerpiece Compote Ruffled
$175.00
Beautiful Large Ruby Red Hand Blown Art Glass Vase 15 tall Strawberry pattern
Beautiful Large Ruby Red Hand Blown Art Glass Vase 15 tall Strawberry pattern
$39.99
Early RARE Wayne Husted for BLENKO glass 7 RE Regal Ruby RED Vase w FREE ShP
Early RARE Wayne Husted for BLENKO glass 7 RE Regal Ruby RED Vase w FREE ShP
$625.00
Ruby Red and Clear Glass Hammer Gavel Unusual Blenko
Ruby Red and Clear Glass Hammer Gavel Unusual Blenko
$29.95


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