Waterford Crystal Lamps History
The Irish dominate in the skill of glass crafting. The skill has a long tradition that has been born through patience and care. The Irish craftsmen were not only skillful in their work. They created magic and power in the crafting of their glass crystals. World-renowned as the best in the formation of glass crystals, these artisans were quite meticulous in their craft.
Establishing Waterford Glass House
The Waterford Glass House came into existence in 1783 due to Penrose brothers George and William Penrose. They said that their glass crystals would be of the same quality as some of the finest crystals in all of Europe. They were correct in their aspirations. The glasses and minerals they used transformed into beautiful idyllic crystals. The glass would sing when it was tapped on. The strength of the crystals shone through despite the warmness and smoothness of the glass. The ornamentation that was carved deeply into these crystals shines through the already bright white crystal that these men crafted. Waterford has been reigned by artistry and patience.
Exhibitions of Celebration
The amount of drinking glasses, crystals, and serving accessories that filled American and European aristocratic homes was exponential. The court of King George III admired his ordered set of crystals at his resort residence. Waterford had received medals from the Royal Dublin Society for their designs that no other crystal production company could rival. Waterford was to establish it itself as a formidable company. Unfortunately, the financial climate had changed and the owner, George Gatchell, shut down the factory in 1851. The London Exhibition had displayed many of the crystals that same year. These crystals had received critical acclaim.
Revitalizing Waterford Following World War II
The Waterford crystal’s production had ended a hundred years before the Irish arts became relevant again. This relevance was due to the independence of Ireland. This motivated a few business men to reopen Waterford’s glass house.
Czech Kael Bacik hired Miroslav Havel, another Czech, as Chief Designer for Waterford. Havel got much of his inspiration by going to Ireland’s National Museum to study the Penrose brothers’ glass crystals. In 1952, he designed the iconic Lismore based on these studies. Lismore has continued to be one of the best-selling crystals.
Bacik and Havel hand-picked artisans to work for Waterford. With this team, Waterford became a success once again. With their range of Waterford Crystal Lamps.
The crystals of Waterford are regularly handed to members of royal families as well as Head of State. The government in Ireland has given these crystals to quite a few American presidents from Eisenhower to Reagan. A number of scientists and athletes have also received crystal trophies.
All of the crystals have been and are being made at the design studio in Waterford City, Ireland. John Connolly, the Chief Designer, as well as late Jim O’Leary guided their group of artisans to make the American PGA trophy, the ball for New Year’s Eve in Times Square, and the award of the People’s Choice.