Stevens & Williams Ltd., located in Brierley Hill, England, was a prominent glass company with a history spanning over 360 years. Established in 1847, the company underwent several transitions and ownership changes before taking the name Royal Brierley in 1968.
Jeremiah Bague’s Glassworks Origins: As early as the 1640s, the Bague family operated a glassworks in Brettell Lane, laying the foundation for Stevens and Williams. Bankruptcy and a new partnership led to the birth of the renowned Glassworks.
Establishment in Moor Lane: In the 1760s, the Honeyborne family began manufacturing glass at Moor Lane, eventually forming Stevens and Williams Ltd. in 1847.
Formation of Stevens and Williams Ltd.: Successors to the Honeyborne family, Joseph Silvers and Joseph Stevens, founded the company that would become a beacon in the glass industry.
Innovations and Artistic Contributions
Cut Flint Glass Production: Pioneering the creation of cut flint and plain crystal, their work became synonymous with quality as early as 1804.
Influence of John Northwood and Frederick Carder: The artistic contributions of Northwood and Carder fueled innovation, leading to unique designs in coloured glass and cameo work.
Modern Designs and Keith Murray’s Influence: By employing New Zealand architect Keith Murray in 1932, Stevens and Williams embraced the modern designs of the era, creating iconic pieces like the decanter.
Challenges and Changes
The 19th century brought new challenges with foreign competition and changing design tastes. Stevens and Williams adapted, paving the way in modern design.
From facing bankruptcy to rebirth as Royal Brierley Crystal Ltd., the company thrives today. Dartington Glass maintains the Royal Brierley brand, producing high-quality studio glass.
The history of Stevens & Williams is a testament to resilience, creativity, and innovation. With a legacy spanning centuries, their influence resonates in the glass industry, inspiring future generations.Embed from Getty Images
Wikipedia contributors. (2022, December 19). Stevens & Williams. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 00:19, January 9, 2023, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Stevens_%26_Williams&oldid=1128354491