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:

BLENKO RUBY RED Pinched Donut VASE
BLENKO RUBY RED Pinched Donut VASE
$29.99
Blenko Air Twist Ruby Tangerine Sherbet Glasses Set of 6
Blenko Air Twist Ruby Tangerine Sherbet Glasses Set of 6
$200.00
BLENKO ART GLASS RUBY RED HAND BLOWN PINCHED DECANTER
BLENKO ART GLASS RUBY RED HAND BLOWN PINCHED DECANTER
$99.00
Vintage Ruby Red Hand Blown Art Glass Optic Decanter With Stopper
Vintage Ruby Red Hand Blown Art Glass Optic Decanter With Stopper
$14.00
Mid Century Ruby Red Amberina Art Glass Footed Goblet Vase
Mid Century Ruby Red Amberina Art Glass Footed Goblet Vase
$15.00
Vintage Blenko Large Bowl 12 Ruffled Edge Fluted Ruby Crackle Glass
Vintage Blenko Large Bowl 12 Ruffled Edge Fluted Ruby Crackle Glass
$225.00
BLENKO RUBY RED GLASS APPLE PAPERWEIGHT
BLENKO RUBY RED GLASS APPLE PAPERWEIGHT
$19.50
Vintage Blenko Handcrafted Ruby Amberina Art Glass Bowl 101 2 Diameters
Vintage Blenko Handcrafted Ruby Amberina Art Glass Bowl 101 2 Diameters
$135.00
Stunning Vintage Mid Century Modern Blenko Art Glass Ruby Bowl
Stunning Vintage Mid Century Modern Blenko Art Glass Ruby Bowl
$85.00
Blenko Clear Beaker Vase with applied Ruby Red Coil Decanter
Blenko Clear Beaker Vase with applied Ruby Red Coil Decanter
$49.99
BLENKO ART GLASS RUBY RED HAND BLOWN PINCHED DECANTER WITH 6 GLASSES
BLENKO ART GLASS RUBY RED HAND BLOWN PINCHED DECANTER WITH 6 GLASSES
$132.60
Blenko Small Ruby Crackle Finish Pitcher with Clear Glass Handle
Blenko Small Ruby Crackle Finish Pitcher with Clear Glass Handle
$29.00
Pair 2 TWO Blenko Ruby Red Pinched Tumblers
Pair 2 TWO Blenko Ruby Red Pinched Tumblers
$35.00
Blenko 2011 Ruby Red Double Spout Water Pitcher w santa and reindeer signed
Blenko 2011 Ruby Red Double Spout Water Pitcher w santa and reindeer signed
$74.99
Mid Century Modern Blenko Art Glass Amberina PitcherPontil BaseRuby Red Yellow
Mid Century Modern Blenko Art Glass Amberina PitcherPontil BaseRuby Red Yellow
$29.92
Vintage Rainbow Ruby Crackle Decanter with Blenko Stopper
Vintage Rainbow Ruby Crackle Decanter with Blenko Stopper
$39.99
Blenko Ruby Heart PaperWeight New
Blenko Ruby Heart PaperWeight New
$24.99
Old 4 Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Pinched Vase Broken Pontil RARE
Old 4 Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Glass Pinched Vase Broken Pontil RARE
$49.99
Mid Century Modern Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Joel Myers Glass Bottle Vase
Mid Century Modern Blenko Ruby Red Crackle Joel Myers Glass Bottle Vase
$30.00
Set of 4 Blenko Ruby Red Tumblers Pinched Design
Set of 4 Blenko Ruby Red Tumblers Pinched Design
$35.00
Blenko Ruby Red Oversized Airtwist Goblet Wine Glass
Blenko Ruby Red Oversized Airtwist Goblet Wine Glass
$45.00
BLENKO Crackle Art Glass Ruby Red Flame Decanter Vase Eames Era
BLENKO Crackle Art Glass Ruby Red Flame Decanter Vase Eames Era
$14.99
6 Blenko Ruby Red Pinched Glasses Tumblers Rare Mid Century Modern
6 Blenko Ruby Red Pinched Glasses Tumblers Rare Mid Century Modern
$135.00
VINTAGE RUBY RED HAND BLOWN GLASS DOUBLE OPENING PINCHED CENTER WEDDING VASE
VINTAGE RUBY RED HAND BLOWN GLASS DOUBLE OPENING PINCHED CENTER WEDDING VASE
$9.89
Blenko Large Daisy Bowl in Ruby VERY Heavy 64 lbs Very Thick Almost Ebony 847L
Blenko Large Daisy Bowl in Ruby VERY Heavy 64 lbs Very Thick Almost Ebony 847L
$50.00
2011 Vintage BLENKO Water Bottle No 384 RUBY RED Sandblast Mark Label Hang Tag
2011 Vintage BLENKO Water Bottle No 384 RUBY RED Sandblast Mark Label Hang Tag
$38.00
Vintage Blenko Ruby Red Art Glass Large Barrel Centerpiece Bowl Vase NICE
Vintage Blenko Ruby Red Art Glass Large Barrel Centerpiece Bowl Vase NICE
$249.99
RARE Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby red Tall Pitcher half gallon plus
RARE Vintage Blenko Art Glass Ruby red Tall Pitcher half gallon plus
$99.50
Vtg Ruby Tangerine Blenko Water Juice Pitcher Mid Century Modern Original Label
Vtg Ruby Tangerine Blenko Water Juice Pitcher Mid Century Modern Original Label
$52.99
Blenko 3749G Ruby Color Hi Ball Glass
Blenko 3749G Ruby Color Hi Ball Glass
$17.50
Vintage Ruby Red  Clear Applied Handles Blenko Vase 7 3 8
Vintage Ruby Red Clear Applied Handles Blenko Vase 7 3 8
$20.00
LOT Vintage Hand Blown Crackle Grass Miniature Pitchers Ruby
LOT Vintage Hand Blown Crackle Grass Miniature Pitchers Ruby
$25.00
1958 BLENKO Wayne Husted vtg american studio glass vase Regal Rialto ruby red
1958 BLENKO Wayne Husted vtg american studio glass vase Regal Rialto ruby red
$950.00
Crackle Glass Pitcher Vase Vintage BLENKO Ruby Red w amber lip
Crackle Glass Pitcher Vase Vintage BLENKO Ruby Red w amber lip
$44.99
Vintage BLENKO Hand Blown Art Glass Round Globe Vase in Ruby Apple Red 1930s
Vintage BLENKO Hand Blown Art Glass Round Globe Vase in Ruby Apple Red 1930s
$34.99
Blenko Glass 6743 In Ruby With Label  Glass Floor Vase In Ruby Red
Blenko Glass 6743 In Ruby With Label Glass Floor Vase In Ruby Red
$225.00
BLENKO Ruby RED LARGE 15 GLASS SCALLOPPED BOWL HAND CRAFTED SIGNED
BLENKO Ruby RED LARGE 15 GLASS SCALLOPPED BOWL HAND CRAFTED SIGNED
$50.00
Vintage Pilgrim Glass Ruby Red Crackle glass Decanter Mid Century Modern
Vintage Pilgrim Glass Ruby Red Crackle glass Decanter Mid Century Modern
$19.99
VIKING ART GLASS RUBY RED GEORGAIN SMALL WINE STEMED WINE GOBLET
VIKING ART GLASS RUBY RED GEORGAIN SMALL WINE STEMED WINE GOBLET
$6.99
BLENKO RARE RUBY RED VASE WITH APPLIED CRYSTAL HANDLES
BLENKO RARE RUBY RED VASE WITH APPLIED CRYSTAL HANDLES
$79.99


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