The easiest and most direct way to identify Fire-King jadeite is from its markings. The majority of Fire-King jadeite pieces have distinct embossed markings with word patterns such as OVEN FIRE-KING GLASS, OVEN FIRE-KING WARE, or FIRE-KING OVEN GLASS. Just by inspecting the markings on your jadeite, you can gain valuable insight into its probable production years and determine if it is a reproduction or original.
To authenticate Fire-King Jadeite, look at the marks. Look for “Fire-King” in block letters, and if no other marks are present, it was made between 1942 and 1945. Those pieces are more valuable to collectors. The “ANCHOR Hocking” stamp was used between 1962 and 1976. If the mark includes “2000,” the piece was made in 2000.
Read on to learn more about how to identify and date Fire-King jadeite.
Fire-King Jadeite Markings
In order to fully authenticate Fire-King jadeite, you will need to look a bit closer at these and a few other markings. The early production pieces can be identified by markings written only with full block type. In time, the “Fire-King” lettering was changed to script from the full block type.
If you have Fire-King Jadeite plates with one of those word patterns in all block letters and no other markings, they were among the first pieces created from 1942 to 1945. These early pieces (with block letters) have a greater collector value than later ones.
“FIRE-KING OVEN GLASS” is the earliest known block-letter marking on Jadeite pieces, which were produced between 1942 and 1945. The Fire-King script logo didn’t appear until 1948 and was used until Anchor Hocking discontinued production of Jadeite in 1976.
If your Fire-King Jadeite plates display the word OVEN, in either of the above configurations, with the Fire-King script logo and no other symbols, they were created from 1948 to 1950.
The “MADE IN THE U.S.A.” stamp was implemented and applied from 1951 to 1961.
How Did Anchor Hocking Affect the Jadeite Markings?
The “ANCHOR” Hocking stamp was first used on Jadeite markings in 1962 and continued until 1976 when production of Jadeite ended. The “2000” stamp may be found on some pieces of Fire-King Jadeite after 1976, but these pieces were most likely reproductions made by Anchor Hocking.
The “MADE IN THE U.S.A.” and the “2000” stamp were never used together on any piece of Fire-King Jadeite. The Anchor Hocking name and logo are trademarks of Anchor Hocking Pottery.
If your jadeite plates have the Anchor Hocking logo in the mark, they were produced between 1962 and 1976 – unless the mark includes “2000,” in which case they were made in 2000.
In some cases, two special numbers may be seen inside Fire-King Jadeite markings. The top number, placed in the upper half of the marking, indicates which product it is. The bottom number indicates the mold number of the glassware. This number is located just above the MADE IN U.S.A. marking.
Can you Microwave Fire-King Jadeite?
The predominant opinion on this question is that you would be wise to only hand wash your jadeite. There are several reasons for this opinion. First, one should remember that when these items were initially being manufactured, microwaves were not in common use and the power of these appliances has increased mightily. In addition, those who feel that microwaving can be done tend to stress that low temperatures and short exposure times should be your guide. If your jadeite is vintage and a collector’s item, it is reasonable for you to not want to risk damaging it. Also, there are many who recommend that you do not even expose your jadeite to your dishwasher. Overall, the consensus seems to be that you should protect your jadeite as best you can.
Is all Fire-King Jadeite Marked?
Most are, but not all of them. During the earliest years of manufacturing, the only marking used was to affix a foil label to the jadeite. The foil label was used to indicate that the product had been newly manufactured. After that period, all Fire-King jadeite began receiving markings we explained above. Of course, when Anchor Hocking began manufacturing the products, they continued the use of embossed markings until they ended production. It is important to note, as indicated above, that when Anchor Hocking manufactured reproductions, those jadeite pieces were uniquely marked to identify them as reproductions.
Does Fire-King Jadeite Glow?
Jadeite plates are well-known for their lovely green hue in broad daylight. Some of them, however, contain small amounts of uranium and radiate a brilliant glow under a black light.
Before the war, jadeite contained uranium. enabling it to glow under black light. After the war started, uranium was needed for weaponry, so jadeite stopped adding it to the product. Removing the uranium caused the jadeite to no longer glow under black light, which many people found disappointing.
The only way to produce jadeite that glows under a black light is with uranium. As a result, if you want to find jadeite that glows under a black light, look for pieces made by McKee or Jeannette. Uranium reserves were depleted by the time Anchor Hocking began producing their jadeite line in the early 1960s, so their jadeite will not glow.
To sum it up, if you want to find jadeite that glows under a black light, look for pieces from McKee or Jeannette. If you want to find jadeite that does not glow under a black light, look for pieces from Anchor Hocking. Plates from the 1940s and early 1950s, when uranium was still being used in machine-made glass, will show the strongest reaction to black light.
Even though the addition of uranium did cause the jadeite to glow, it was long believed that radioactivity was responsible for the illumination. In reality, it was a chemical reaction of uranium that was responsible. If radiation itself were to blame, these products would not have been suitable to use in your home.
Why is Jadeite so Expensive?
To begin with, we have to consider jadeite’s formation. There are a number of opinions, but they all relate to volcanic lava’s crustal movement. The primary component is sodium aluminum silicate.
Myanmar produces about 95 percent of our jadeite! And excellent quality! Other sources include countries like Guatemala, Russia, Kazakhstan, Japan, and the United States. Although these countries only produce a modest amount, the quality is not high and is not respected by the jadeite market.
As with other commodities, its price is a function of demand. The demand for an item greatly impacts its price. This is true of jadeite. China consumes more than 90% of the jadeite in the world.
Because jadeite has very rich colors with a hard texture (6.5-7.5), and can be finely polished and shiny, it is very suitable for carving. These properties have made it a favorite of Chinese jade culture.
Jadeite was first utilized in China’s Zhou Dynasty when it was restricted to the aristocracy of the imperial court and only accessible to them. Jadeite has gone through the adoration of jadeite in every dynasty until today, attaining its position as jadeite.
The exploitation of jadeite resources is also a factor that may cause the Jade price to rise. The supply is decreasing, and the demand for jade has not decreased, so naturally, the cost will climb!
Jadeite is cherished for its appealing emerald green color, as well as its excellent natural characteristics such as high transparency and purity. Its beautiful and glistening color makes it seem like pure treasure!