Flip Glass

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Heading into the weekend, are you ready to try a new libation?

If you are feeling adventurous you might want to try flipGlasses like this one were traditionally used for the 18th century beverage called flip – typically a mixture of heated liquor or wine, sugar, egg, and nutmeg. The ingredients were mixed, then poured back and forth between two glasses or jugs — in other words, flipped. Then the mixture was heated again with a hot iron poker (similar to the way a latte’s milk is heated today with a steaming wand) and served warm.

The glass is referred to as “Stiegel type” and is bluish in color, with a flower-in-basket design. The Stiegel name refers to German-American Henry William Stiegel (1729-1785), who had a successful shop in Manheim, Pennsylvania. Stiegel went to great lengths to model his pieces on quality European design, and they gained in popularity as tensions rose during the heated years of the American Revolution. He then opened several shops along the Eastern seaboard. Most of his work is unmarked so the glasses are without attribution and referred to as “Stiegel type.”

This glass was donated by Lotus Robb Ross (1893-1969), a famous actress who starred on Broadway and in Hollywood films. Lotus was involved with the museum as her husband Marvin (1904-1977), a scholar of medieval art, author, and curator at the Walters Art Museum, became a trustee of Hammond-Harwood House in 1948. Marvin had witnessed the destruction of art while in Europe during World War II, when he served as Deputy Advisor of the Monuments Men. After the war, he focused on  the preservation of America’s own antiquities. Ross joined the furnishings committee of the Hammond-Harwood House, and, using his curatorial skills and connections with donors helped to create a world-class collection of American paintings by the Peale family and furniture by 18th century Annapolis cabinetmaker John Shaw. On a few occasions he and his wife Lotus even donated personally to the collection;  this “Stiegel ” flip glass is an example, given to the museum in 1952.

Image of Flip Glass
Flip Glass
Maker: Unknown, possibly Henry William Stiegel (1729-1785)
Medium: Glass
K7 Donated by Lotus Robb Ross in 1952
American, possibly Pennsylvania, c. 18th century

By Rachel Lovett Curator & Assistant Director

Posted on Jun 25, 2021 in , by Hammond-Harwood House



Hammond-Harwood House

The mission of the Hammond-Harwood House Association is to preserve and to interpret the architecturally significant Hammond-Harwood House Museum and its collection of fine and decorative arts, and to explore the diverse social history associated with its occupants, both free and enslaved, for the purposes of education and appreciation.
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