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Sulphides - History Of Marble Collecting


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I thought this first picture was wonderful! The 2nd is a bonus.

They're from a 1941 Hobbies magazine. The November issue has 3 marble collecting articles in it. Joe Street sent me a nice copy of the three articles (and he'd gladly send a copy to you). The text can be found at his site: Marble Articles Home Page

p.s. this might be from before figure marbles started being called "sulphides". Still looking for earliest uses of that name!

p.p.s. this might be the earliest use I've seen of the name "Bennington".



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I have been collecting since 1992 and never really thought people collected marbles like this in the 40's and 50's. I just assumed they had them in bags or boxes of toys sitting in a closet, never dispalyed like we display our collections, interesting. I wonder where he found his marbles.

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I share your surprise, Greg.

Henry Watson was an art collector who also had a marble collection. His was on display in a Florida museum. Don't know if it is anymore. He had marbles articles in the American Collector magazine in 1942 and 1943.

ooh. I now see that Watson identified the figure marbles as having a "sulphide center" in both of those articles. Maybe he was responsible for why we call them sulphides. FWIW! LOL. Sorry to fixate on that. I've been wondering about that name 'sulphide' for a looong time.

Berry Pink supposedly had a nice marble collection. Need to look up the date on when he was publicizing that. Wonder what happened to his!

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Nice the manner in which this thread brings into focus the fact that 'collecting' has been universal and long-standing. Considering the beauty that marbles present it is hardly surprising that they experienced closet collectors from early on. Yet it is heart warming to be able to establish even deeper roots for what we love so much.....and during the Holiday Season at that. David

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Interesting that you should mention the use of the name apart from marbles. It has recently dawned on me that I might learn more about sulphides from paperweight collectors. I'm not sure yet when sulphide marbles were first made. They were around in the 1880's for sure, but how long before?

In 1883, A. W. Roberts called it a "Glass Figure Agate". Other references I have between then and the 1940's range from something like that to vague things like "those glass alleys we love with the animals inside". (not an exact quote, but the general idea of what I've read)

LOL @ me because I need to stop finding more info and start organizing what I have.

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