Pre-Felton acquisitions included:
- Various pieces of glassware purchased 1881, including Claret jug, with etched design of Venus rising from the sea. NGV 701-D1M: see photo; further examples also in NGV (refer catalogue)
- Set of wine and champagne glasses. Presented by Webb & Sons 1881. NGV (refer catalogue); some no longer extant?
[photo: Claret jug purchased 1881 (NGV 701-D1M)]
The firm of Webb & Sons was established at Stourbridge, Worcestershire, in 1837, closing only in 1990.
Melbourne’s pre-Felton examples all appear to have been acquired from Webb & Sons at the Melbourne International Exhibition in 1881, where the company apparently had a spectacular stand. Edwards (1998), who reproduces a number of the extant examples, all dated to about 1880, notes that others were de-accessioned in the 1940s.
AR 1881, p.54 (“Collection of Glass Ware. Sculptured, engraved, and etched,” purchased at the 1881 exhibition) and p.56 (“Eight specimens Artistic Glass, engraved,” donated by Webb & Sons)
Refer NGV catalogue; see also Geoffrey Edwards, Art of Glass (1998), pp.154-55, and Edwards in Lane Decorative Arts (1980), p.80. For the general history, see e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Webb_%26_Sons (accessed 22 April 2020)