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C. Dorflinger & Sons Collection

Identifier: MS-0035

Scope and Contents

This collection of records and design drawings of an American glass and cut glass manufacturer consists of two series:

(1) Ledgers, Notebooks, and Price Lists, 1895-1921

(2) Design Drawings, Circa 1900-1920


  • Creation: 1895-1921


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Some items in this collection are missing. Missing items are clearly identified as such in the Ledgers, Notebooks, and Price Lists series inventory.

This collection is open for public research. Researchers must make an appointment to view the collection.

Conditions Governing Use

The Copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. The user agrees to defend, indemnify, and hold harmless the Corning Museum of Glass and the Rakow Research Library against all claims, demands, costs and expenses incurred by copyright infringement or any other legal or regulatory cause of action arising from the use of Library materials.

Biographical / Historical

Christian Dorflinger, founder of the glass cutting firm C. Dorflinger & Sons, was born in Alsace in 1828. He apprenticed at the St. Louis Glass Works in France before immigrating to the United States in 1846. After working as a journeyman glass blower, Dorflinger established the Long Island Flint Glass Works in Brooklyn in 1852. In the late 1850s and early 1860s, Dorflinger opened other glass factories and glass working businesses in Brooklyn.

In 1863, Dorflinger retired from his businesses and moved to Pennsylvania. But in 1865, he opened another glass factory, Dorflinger Glass Company, in White Mills, Pennsylvania. Two years later, he opened a cutting shop there. His glass business continued to grow in the 1870s, and in 1881, his sons joined him in managing the company. C. Dorflinger & Sons produced glass ware for many prominent customers, including four United States presidents.

In addition to making its own cut glass ware, C. Dorflinger & Sons supplied blanks to more than twenty cutting shops. The business thrived until the death of Christian Dorflinger in 1915. World War I and prohibition brought further downturn in the cut glass industry. The factory closed in 1921.

Bibliography: Revi, Albert Christian. _Encyclopedia of American Cut & Engraved Glass_. s.v. "Dorflinger Glass Company." Atglen, PA: Schiffer Books, 2000.


7.25 Linear Feet (1 Hollinger box, 4 half Hollinger boxes, 2 flat boxes, and 1 oversized folder)

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Many materials in this collection were damaged in the 1972 flood. Researchers will see evidence of water damage (smeared ink and tide lines) in a number of the ledgers and notebooks. Most ledger and notebook bindings are damaged or missing, and the paper is fragile. Researchers should handle the materials gently to prevent further damage.

Boxes 5 and 6 of the Design Drawings series contain materials with visible flood mud. These materials are also quite brittle; most have tears or areas of loss at the edges. Researchers should wear nitrile gloves and apron when using these materials and should limit access to flood-damaged materials to two hours per day. Researchers should also handle the materials gently to prevent further damage.

Some materials in the collection received conservation assessment and treatment in 2022.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Received from Mrs. John C. Dorflinger in 1966.

Related Materials

The library of the Dorflinger Factory Museum in White Plains, Pennsylvania holds significant archival materials documenting the Dorflinger Factories in Brooklyn and White Plains.

Processing Information

Processed by Colleen McFarland Rademaker in 2019.

C. Dorflinger & Sons Collection, 1895-1921
A Guide to the Collection
Colleen McFarland Rademaker
August 30, 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the The Rakow Research Library Manuscript Collection Repository

The Rakow Research Library
The Corning Museum of Glass
Five Museum Way
Corning NY 14830 USA