Also known as uranium glass, Vaseline glass glows bright green under ultraviolet light, thanks to the uranium oxide added to the glass in its molten state. In natural or indoor light, Vaseline glass has a yellow or yellow-green tinge with an oily sheen, which is where its name comes from. Vaseline glass is not to be confused with Custard glass and Burmese glass, which also glow under ultraviolet light. While Vaseline pieces are transparent or translucent, these pieces are opaque.

Uranium oxide was first used as a coloring agent in the 1830s; Vaseline glass was produced commonly from the 1840s through World War I, though it was most popular from the 1880s onward. A variety of companies produced it, including Adams & Co., Steuben Glass, Cambridge Glass Co., and Baccarat, which released its first Vaseline glass piece in 1843 under the name “cristal dichroide.”

Different companies called its distinctive color different names, including citron, jasmine, golden green, mustard, Florentine, and canary. Pieces could also have different exterior color finishes, like satin, opalescent, iridescent, rubina verde, and yellow-green.

Vaseline glass was produced in a variety of styles over the years, from Victorian to Art Deco. During the Great Depression, some manufacturers added iron oxide (rust) to the Vaseline glass mixture in an effort to make the glass look greener in natural light. As a result, Vaseline-glass purists exclude this Depression-era glass from the Vaseline-glass family, since Vaseline glass in the traditional sense does not include iron oxide in its composition. Carnival glass was also produced in Vaseline glass varieties, which generally had a marigold, iridescent look.

Although making dinnerware out of uranium may seem like a bad idea today, companies produced an endless variety of Vaseline glass dinnerware pieces, including wine servers, water pitchers, mugs, and butter dishes, along with more decorative shapes like candlesticks and paperweights.

Around 1943, the U.S. government halted the production of Vaseline glass altogether, as uranium became a heavily regulated substance. In 1958, uranium oxide was deregulated, and the production of Vaseline glass resumed. This time, however, producers used depleted uranium in place of more radioactive natural uranium.

Practically since its invention, Vaseline glass has carried the burden of a bad reputation. Stories of Vaseline glassblowers dying young from lung cancer raised the question of r...

The U.S. Nuclear Regulation Commission studied the health risks of Vaseline glass in its 2001 report, “Systematic Radiological Assessment of Exemptions for Source and Byproduct Materials.” This report agreed largely with what collectors had been saying all along—radiation from the glass was equally (or, in some cases, even less) harmful than the background radiation levels we are exposed to every day.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Pattern Glass School

Pattern Glass School

If you need schooling on Victorian-era pressed glass tableware aka EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) aka Pattern … [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Antique Victorian Art Nouveau Uranium Vaseline Kerosene Oil Lamp Light ShadeStunning Art Nouveau Vaseline Glass Vase James Powell Whitefriars Antique NrAntique Vaseline Glass Vase Pair John Walsh Art And Crafts Nouveau Uranium Vases1 Antique Fenton Cranberry Opalescent Bowl&1 Vaseline Opalescent Hobnail Vase*nrUranium Green Vaseline Glass Dragon Fish Candle Sticks HoldersWeishar Vaseline Moon And Stars Small Covered Candy Dish Iridescent CarnivalVaseline Glass Odds & EndsAntique Vaseline Glass Flower VaseAntique Yellow Vaseline Glass Covered Jar Apothecary Contrainer Candy Store VtgCitrine Uranium Vaseline Glass Turkey Lidded SaltVintage Green Depression Uranium Vaseline Glass Juicer ReamerFancy Pair!! Flint Vaseline ** French Or English ** Tall Candlesticks!!Eapg Antique Vaseline Pattern Glass Child's Toy Mug Cup Wolf Panther & DeerVintage 11 1/4" Green Vaseline Glass Art Glass VaseCanary Yellow Solid Twisted Vaseline Uranium Walking Cane Rare! One Of A Kind!Vaseline Glass VaseVintage Green Depression Vaseline Uranium Tumblers GlassVintage Cambridge Majestic Etch 732 Green Vaseline Glass Oval ServerVintage Fenton Iridescent Vaseline Stretch Glass Covered Candy Dish Jar Urn TallX2 Antique / Vintage 4.25" Uranium Vaseline Glass Small Bowl / Dish Jelly DesertVaseline Glass VaseUranium Glass Pink Carnival Marble With Boyd Holder Glows! Excellent CondAntique Vaseline Opalescent Glass Lily Trumpet Vase Epergne Epns Silver BaseVintage Uranium Vaseline Depression Glass Compote Dessert Plates /dishes 4 PcsGreen Vaseline Glass CruetVintage Yellow Vaseline Uranium Glass Opalescent Hobnail Vase1948 Tucker Automobile / Car Vaseline Carnival Boyd Crystal Art Glass FigurineCanary/vaseline Fenton Fern And Daisy Opalescent CruetVaseline English Jam Jar With Honeycomb Design - Vintage With Silver Spoon& TopVaseline Glass NoveltiesVaseline Uranium Glass Arrow For Elevator ? Car Or Truck Signel ? (id169874 )Vintage Set Of 5 Green 4" Sauce Berry Bowls Depression Glass Vaseline UraniumVaseline Uranium Glass Dolphin/ Fish Candlesticks Mma Metropolitan MuseumRare Antique Vaseline Glass Trophy Cup, Double Handled Vase**vaseline Opalescent Lg Wright Fenton Daisy & Fern Tumbler #2**Valesline Glass (lot Of 3) Stopper, Decanter And Small BottleBoyd Glass Old Advertising Logo Golden Vaseline Made In 1982 FundVintage Yellow Vaseline Uranium Glass Opalescent Fenton Hobnail Shoe/ BootUranium Glass Marbles 1" Marble With Stand Vintage Vaseline Glass Candy Dish Pink Trim Peach Vaseline Boyd Uranium Glass Willie The Mouse Figurine #11 1991 Glows!Antique Eapg Vaseline Glass Hobnail Toothpick Holder Green Vaseline Uranium Depression Glass Block Optic Luncheon Plates Set Of 15Rdp Flourescing Naj Hemingray 19 Vaseline Glass Insulator Vvnm More PicturesBoyd Glass Old Big Joey Horse Firefly Vaseline Made In 1980 FundAntique Uranium Vaseline Blue Glass Violin Guitar Candy Dish Ashtray VtgBoyd Glass Scotty Dog Vaseline Slag Cobalt Made In 2004 FundHoney Vaseline Uranium Art Glass Tractor Figurine Boyd Glows! Excellent!Cider Colored Commemorative Small Plate Boyd Crystal Art Glass Factory Glows!1890's Victorian Stourbridge Burmese Posy Vase By Thomas Webb Uranium Vaseline Vintage Satin Vaseline Glass Tiffin Vase & Candle Stick SetVaseline Glass Female Shaped Dish - Art Deco StyleVintage Green Depression Vaseline Glass Automobile Vase 1920's-30'sElegant Vintage Vaseline Depression Glass Ice Tea Pitcher & Lid & 6 GlassesEapg Wildflower Pattern Vaseline Glass Stemmed Goblet; 6" Tall By 3 1/8" AcrossMint Vintage 40's Fenton Glass Vaseline Opalescent Hobnail VaseBoyd Glass Old Free Hand Bird Peridot Vaseline Made In 1984 FundGreen Vaseline Depression Glass Ribbon Candy Compote Dish & Cover With GoldFenton Iridescent Vaseline Hollly Carnival Glass Ruffled Hat. No/reserveCzech Hand Made Vaseline Uranium Earrings A274

Recent News: Vaseline Glass

Source: Google News

David Bowie Is Everywhere
Hyperallergic, August 18th

In an exquisitely designed vitrine at Martin-Gropius-Bau, illuminated from within by a concealed neon light, a David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust mannequin lays dead, his head pillowed on some antique newspapers, beneath a painting depicting two David...Read more

Chinese Antiques and Bohemian Glass Bring Top Prices at Kaminski Auctions ...
Virtual-Strategy Magazine (press release), July 30th

Lot #1247 featured an outstanding pair of opaque glass decanters with gilt decoration and the second pair, Lot #1248 of clear uranium/ Vaseline glass and featured the image of Zill al-Sultan ("Shadow of the King," the Qajar prince who ruled Isfahan...Read more