All posts by Graham

World’s largest public Corn Flower glassware collection undergoing ‘big upgrade’


The rare blues and purples found in the world’s largest public collection of Corn Flower glassware is expected to sparkle even brighter once the Dufferin County Museum and Archives wakes from a winter hibernation.

From now until spring, the museum will be closed to the public as it undergoes a $450,000 renovation project for its W.J. Hughes & Sons Corn Flower Limited glassware collection.

“A lot of people that have Corn Flower collections in their home might not realize that it came from Dufferin County,” said Dufferin County Museum and Archives (DCMA) curator Sarah Robinson, noting the museum’s collection of more than 2,000 pieces features some of the rarest Corn Flower items around.

“We have groupings of blue and purple (Corn Flower glassware) that are especially rare,” Robinson said. “Very few collectors across North America that would have the pieces in our collection.”

Corn-flower glass design a sparkling work of art

!! From the Orilla Packet:

In 1914, William John “Jack” Hughes began cutting glass tableware full-time in the basement of his home at 212 Wychwood Ave., Toronto. Ninety years later, his popular floral pattern, which he called “corn flower,” is one of the most sought-after glass patterns in Canadian antique and collectible outlets.

Corn flower was cut and sold across Canada for more than 70 years and, for many, it has become a cherished heirloom for more than three generations.

Canadian glassware still cherished 100 years later

From Niagara This Week:

A century after WJ Hughes first began pedalling his glassware, collectors are still crazy for Corn Flower.

The glass pieces etched with the distinct flower design have bidders going into war at auction — which is no bother to organizers of the annual What’s In Your Attic auction in support of McNally House. For the last three years the hospice has benefitted from the appeal of this rare bit of Canadiana and this year will be no different.

Corn Flower Festival returns for its 15th year


One of the area’s greatest claims to fame will be celebrated at the Dufferin County Museum and Archives.

On Sunday, June 2, the annual Corn Flower Festival returns for its 15th year.

Between 1940 and 1980, nearly every Canadian household was home to a piece of Corn Flower glass, the creation of Amaranth native W.J. Hughes, according to the museum’s curator Wayne Townsend.

“It is a big claim to fame,” Townsend said. “It’s hard to find anyone other than prime ministers where everybody instantly recognizes the name.”

Each year, upwards of 300 people visit the museum to view its collection of more than 1,200 pieces of Corn Flower glass.

Corn Flower Festival returns to the museum

From the Orangeville Banner:

The Dufferin County Museum & Archives’ (DCMA) annual Corn Flower Festival is returning for its 14th year.

The exhibit, held June 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will focus on showing the museum’s “stuff.”

More than 600 pieces of glass will be displayed during the event, including the museum’s coloured blanks collection dating back to 1920.

11th Corn Flower festival coming to museum

From the Orangeville Citizen:

Dufferin County Museum and Archives (DCMA) will celebrate the famous Corn Flower glassware pattern at its Annual Corn Flower Festival this Sunday, June 7.

Pete and Lois (Hughes) Kayser, the owners and former operators of the WJ Hughes Corn Flower Company will be on hand to answer Corn Flower questions and visitors will be able to meet Krista Taylor, author of the “Canadian Identification & Price Guide to W. J. Hughes Corn Flower Glass” and Wayne Townsend, DCMA Curator and author of “Corn Flower – Creatively Canadian”.

Also planned for the day are ‘share sessions’, a consignment sale, live auction of Corn Flower glassware, and presentations focusing on you, the collector!

Museum Matters

From the Orangeville Citizen:

How does Dufferin celebrate its heritage? Traditionally, by involving the entire community and by celebrating all year long! The staff of the Dufferin County Museum and Archives are looking forward to 2009. Why? Because they are planning events and programs for the whole community for the whole year to celebrate their 15th anniversary at the site on Airport Road in Mulmur Township.

To start, the entire facility will have new exhibits for 2009. First, opening in February, Corn Flower:, “Decades of Design” will feature the DCMA’s nationally known W. J. Hughes Corn Flower collection showcased with fashion items dating from the early 1920s to the 1980s. The exhibit features everything from sleek geometric deco to the free form styles of the swinging 1960s.

Museum celebrates Corn Flower glass

From the Georgetown Independent & Free Press:

Archives celebrates the famous Corn Flower glassware pattern at its annual Corn Flower Festival, this Sunday (June 8).
Pete and Lois (Hughes) Kayser, the owners and former operators of the W.J. Hughes Corn Flower Company will be on hand to answer questions on Corn Flower. Meet Krista Taylor, author of the Canadian Identification & Price Guide to W. J. Hughes Corn Flower Glass, and Wayne Townsend, DCMA curator and author of Corn Flower – Creatively Canadian.

Show of corn flower

From the St. Thomas Times-Journal:

There was a time when corn flower glass products were as common in households as pocket change in Canada.

“It was the most common shower, anniversary or wedding gift given from the 1940s to the 1960s,” said Pat Zimmer, curator of the Aylmer and District Museum.

An extensive collection of corn flower glass creations opened recently at the museum.

The history of the collection owned by Michelle Addley, a volunteer at the museum, traces back to the Hoshal family sale held in Springfield several years ago.

Evelyn Hoshal’s daughter, Dianna Brethour, asked the museum to assemble a sale of her corn flower glass collection, before she moved to Terrace Lodge.

“While helping with the organization of items for the sale, Michelle fell in love with two corn flower fan glass candlewick vases,” Zimmer said. “Unfortunately, Dianna decided to keep the vases and Michelle began her search for duplicates.”

That was in 2003 and, since then, Addley has collected more than 300 corn flower pieces in various patterns.

It was a Canadian, W.J. Hughes, who created the patterns for corn flower glass while working as a glass cutter for Rodan Cut Glass in Toronto.