Albert Graeser Paperweight

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Description (Brief)
In the 1700s, paperweights made from textured stone or bronze were part of the writer’s tool kit, which also included a quill pen and stand, inkpot, and blotter. By the mid-1800s, decorative paperweights produced by glassmakers in Europe and the United States became highly desired collectibles.
Decorative glass paperweights reflected the 19th-century taste for intricate, over-the-top designs. Until the spread of textiles colorized with synthetic dyes, ceramics and glass were among the few objects that added brilliant color to a 19th-century Victorian interior. The popularity of these paperweights in the 1800s testifies to the sustained cultural interest in hand craftsmanship during an age of rapid industrialization.
This paperweight was made by Albert A. Graeser and features an enameled decoration of three joined rings along with two sprays of roses. The back is marked “Made by Albert Graeser, Pittsburgh, Pa.”
In 1892, Graeser patented a process for making advertising paperweights in which he sealed a image to the underside of a rectangular glass blank using an enamel-like glaze.
Currently not on view
date made
Graeser, Albert A.
place made
United States: Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh
Physical Description
glass, transparent (overall material)
enamel painted (joint piece production method/technique)
overall: 2 1/4 in x 3 5/8 in; 5.715 cm x 9.2075 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Aaron and Lillie Straus
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Ceramics and Glass
Domestic Furnishings
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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