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(New York – Redwood New York - Glassmaking)
Manuscript map: “Redwood. Scale 3 chains to 1 inch. H. L. Scott Surveyor.”

Pen, ink and wash, circa 1860s. Folio, measuring 26 ¼ x 18 ⅝ inches. Expertly restored and conserved, backed, else very good.

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            An attractive hand-drawn map of this northern New York village, which was the center of an important glassmaking industry in the region. Streets, lots, churches (drawn in birds-eye elevation,) and the glass factory are shown, with topographical elements – lakes, ponds, streams, and marshes – shown as well. All property owners are identified. The map has been professionally restored: there are some areas of loss restoration, mostly in blank outer areas.

           Redwood, in Jefferson County near Alexandria Bay on the St. Lawrence, was founded in 1833, and named by John Foster, a glass maker from Vermont. He started the Redwood Glass Factory that year, but died soon after. The glassworks, which produced mostly window glass, and an occasional decorative piece, continued under a number of proprietors, notably John Schmauss  in 1844 (on the map his property is noted “Smouse” see below,) and William W. Butterfield in 1859. Employing a hundred workers, the Butterfield Glass Factory burned to the ground in 1868. This map, which shows the location of the Butterfield factory on Main Street may therefore be dated prior to that date.

Accompanied with:

     Schmauss, John F., A Pane of Glass, etched with folk art images, signed and dated Redwood, May 9, 1864

     Measuring 7 ½ x 5 1/8 inches, a clean transverse crack at center.

            An interesting artifact intimately connected with the important glass industry established by John Foster in northern New York in 1833. The town of Redwood owes its origins to Foster’s enterprise and was named by him. It is now a village in the town of Alexandria, Jefferson County, New York, on the St. Lawrence. Foster’s manufactory changed ownership a number of times, at one point becoming Schmauss & Co. The present pane of glass is decorated with an inverted grape cluster within an ornamental border. 27 of the grapes are circles enclosing miniature ornamental designs, including stars of various sorts, hearts, flower sprays and branches, and what look like steamboats. Two of the circles enclose place and date: “Redwood” and “1864.” At the bottom are two fish, above which is Schmauss’ signature and date, and at top, again, “1864.” Despite the regrettable crack: a charming and unique survival.