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Bigelow Varnish Co. Floor Varnish
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Object ID 000920

Object Name Bigelow Varnish Co. Floor Varnish

Object Desc Tall metal container of floor varnish, with a handle and a side pourer with cap. Manufactured by Bigelow varnish Co. 1 gallon. Container is empty.

Collection General Collection

Accession # CMY000836

Alternate ID

General Category History

Category Hardware


Source Category Found In Collection

Accession Date JAN 1,1991


Location Hardware Store

Object Date

Start Year Range

End Year Range

Status On Exhibit

Object Keywords Bigelow Varnish Co.,varnish,wood care,floor finish,

Title Bigelow Varnish Co. Floor Varnish

Description Tall rectangular metal container with a metal handle and a circular side pourer. Pourer has a cork material cap which does not come off. Handle has incription "Bigelow Varnish Co. Newark, NJ". Front is almost completely by a colorful paper label. Colors present as background are red, yellow and light green. The writings are either in black or cream. Label says "The Bigelow Varnish Co. Permanent Floor Varnish", followed by "Manufacturers of Fine Varnishes and Japans". There are two red and yellow cricles to each side of that, the one on the right says "Established 1845", and the one on the left "Office and Factory Newark. N.J.". The right side has a tan paper label with black writing covering the upper half. It has some further info on the product and directions for use (quite hard to read though). The back and left side are clear. The metal there is mainly a dark greenigh grey. The bottom and top and coming on the sides a bit too, are a bright silver color, which was painted later on.


Approx Collection Date

Height 10.5

Length 0

Width 6.25

Depth 3.5

Diameter 0

Circumference 0

Weight 0

Unit of Measure Inches/ounces

Dimension Details Above height if for the tin only. If includedthe cap (highest point) total height is 12.25 inches. The handle is 3.5 inches long and 1 inch high. The side pourer with the attached cap is 1.75 inches high. Cap has a diameter of 1.5 inches and a circumference of 5 inches

Quantity 1



Site Details

Place of Origin

Maker Bigelow Varnish Co.

Maker Details Newark, NJ. Owned by Moses Bigelow (1800-1874), who was a varnish manufacturer, the business enduring for two generations. He also invested in railroads as early as 1835, firmly believing that rail transportation would play a large part in the development of commerce throughout the country.He was also elected Newark's mayor, serving from 1856 through five terms.

Maker Mark


(click for full image)

Image Caption CMY836



Date AUG 23,2013

Summary Fair

Assessor Samanta Pugh

Notes The exposed unpainted metal parts are no longer the original silver color, they are a dark greenish grey. They also present a good amount of rust on several areas.The top and bottom are painted a bright silver, also coming up on the sides a bit. This silver portion has several black spots all throughout, as well as scratches. This paint line is not very even. Some paint also stained the cork. Cork is in good condition, but cannot be removed without possible damage. The front label is covered on several spots by dark stains. It also has a few scratches that reveal the metal underneth. Writings can still be read clearly. The side label has even more dark stains everywhere, making the reading quite difficult. It also has several scratches that teared the label off revealing the metal. Container is empty.