Heart of Glass - Blenko Glass

Blenko Glass is a West Virginia treasure that spans generations. Nothing symbolizes the state of West Virginia better or more beautifully than Blenko Glass. We will discuss current and former craftsmen and designers and how important it is that Blenko and West Virginia glass be appreciated and valued by the younger generation.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Shorty Finley - Recovering From Minor Heart Surgery

Shorty Finley retired more than 40 years ago, however, he still returns twice a year to Blenko Glass. He'd go more frequently if asked.
At age 90 Shorty stays busy going daily to his farm, where he feeds several hundred
two and four legged creatures, plows a small garden, and hunts for the fox, he holds responsible for killing his chickens.
Shorty builds traps for wild animals, or raccoons that eat trash and then re locates them to the hills, he proudly tends a small flower bed near the small cottage in Milton he calls Home.
Several weeks ago Shorty was in the hospital for what he calls 'yet another small heart surgery'
He tells me he is feeling better and welcomes visitors. If you live in Milton, or near enough to drop in on Mr. Shorty Finley this would a time you'll find him at home.
Shorty Finley, and Jessie Carpenter often combined their skills while at Blenko to produce some of the finest glass. Both Jessie and Shorty still live in Cabell County.
The glass history, the combined oral history these gentleman possess is amazing. We should be
recording and documenting these stories.
Shorty my dear friend, if you're reading this. Get well soon. Don't go out in the heat! Not even to the Go Mart!


Anonymous said...

I hope you feel better Shorty! Take care of yourself and God Bless!

Anonymous said...


Go to Blenko's VC check out the 'bastardization' of Wayne Husteds designs that I sadly saw last week
I should have referred you to page 40 of Leslie Pina's book 'Popular 50's and 60's Glass'
for instance where it shows the 6138 floor vase in its original design which
shows how sad we felt to see the fat neck and sunken stopper of the ones I saw last week
in the Blenko Sales Room.

And then on page 28 of the same book is a photo of the 6224 square bottle that Husted made the molds for.. It is now on Blenko's website with an ersatze cheaper solid crystal stopper.
The original stoppers were
in the same color and texture as the bottle. New one with a solid crystal stopper is a bastardization! We read it is now a special design by Randy Rider Blenko finisher
who has made a special run of a hundred.

We do not truly judge anyone for this kind of lack of design integrity as we have learned that the reason some people
ignore Integrity in design is that basically their interest is to sell somethng
and not an interest in design.

Ah I still like Janis Joplin's admonition: "Beware your integrity as it is all you have in the end!"

My question is What Would Wayne Husted think about Blenko's use of his designs?
Husted is responsible for the current interest in vintage Blenko.
Wayne Husted's designs are timeless.
FYI: Check this out!
Is Integrity is something Blenko lost when WH Blenko passed.
Is Integrity something young people fail to recognize?
A Blenko Collector

Anonymous said...

Best Wishes to Shorty
The decades with Shorty
Jessie Les and others
coul be known as Blenko's Golden