The Seneca Glass Company operated from 1891 to 1983. The original factory was in Fostoria, Ohio (the one built by Fostoria). Some time later, a new factory was built along the Monongahela River in Morgantown, West Virginia. Seneca's factory was next to the Morgantown Glass Works and two doors down from Beaumont Glass. This proximity led to the companies "borrowing" designs from one another and at times making or decorating glass for each other. The full name Driftwood Casual is often shortened to Driftwood.
Seneca's original Driftwood line (#1952) had a somewhat different design, but it's still recognizable as Driftwood. A major distinguishing characteristic is that original Driftwood had perfectly round bases. All pieces shown on this page are from the later, more easily found production. I've not been able to track down any of the original yet! Although I prefer the later design, I would love to have some of the original for the collection. Seneca applied for a patent on the original design May 1, 1953 and had it granted October 20 of that year, design patent number 170,666. For a look at the original design, here's the patent file. Front Page Drawings
Original Driftwood was available in at least Crystal, Amethyst Smoke, Bottle Green, Pale Blue, Heather, and Honey, a color similar to Morgantown's Topaz. Tumbler shapes included the Iced Tea, Highball, Water, Juice.
Driftwood is available in a rainbow of colors, though not all pieces will be found in every color. Official colors names are Accent Red, Amber, Buttercup (later called Yellow), Charm Blue, Cinnamon (sometimes called Brown), Crystal, Delphine Blue, Gray, Heather, Lime Green, Moss Green, Peacock Blue, Plum, and Ritz Blue. Colors for which official names have not been found include amberina, white milk glass, black, and a very pale blue similar to Anchor Hocking's Sapphire Blue. Catalog documentation has not been found for milk glass and black. Judging by their scarcity, they were probably limited production runs when Seneca was making other milk glass and black items in the 1970s. Charm Blue is similar to but a little darker than Indiana's smoky blue.
I recently found a circa 1970 Driftwood brochure. Front Back Of interest are five items are listed as being unavailable in Accent Red: 6" Ashtray, Covered Dish, Flowerlite, Salad Plate, 32oz. Pitcher. Since this brochure listing is only a snapshot in time of Driftwood production, I cannot say for sure none of those pieces will be found in Accent Red. However, I can say that I've not yet seen any of them.
Thanks to Nancy, Kerry, Hazel, Gary, and Elizabeth for some of the great photos!
Stems & Tumblers
Pitchers & Bowls
Overall, I like this book, but there are a few errors and inconsistencies in the Driftwood section.
In a photo of similar patterns, glass on right listed as unknown is Bryce's El Rancho pattern.
Color Inconsistencies: I use Seneca's names for colors. The book uses Amethyst for Plum, Cobalt for Ritz Blue, and Charcoal for Gray.
Plum pitcher is 32, not 37 oz.
32 & 65 Oz. pitchers listed as Cinnamon are actually Amber. Cinnamon is a synonym for Brown.
"Hollow Stem Beer Glass" next to Gray salad bowl is actually a Steel Blue Hollow Stem Pilsner from Morgantown's Crinkle line.
Color Data Ordered from most to least valuable, based on my experience. Known years of production are listed in parentheses. I've not seen catalogs earlier than 1967, but obviously many of the colors listed as being in production then actually began earlier. Heather, for example, was around in 1953 when the original Driftwood was introduced, but it was discontinued by the 1970s. Plum is a very scarce color, probably made for 2 years at most.
About the dates listed: The first year for which I have reliable catalog info is 1967. Driftwood production began in the 1950s, so there's a large gap in the information. Items & colors which likely began before 1967 are designated with (-1967)
Black (mid 1970s??)
Milk Glass (??)
Ritz Blue (1975-1979)
Plum (1973, perhaps 1974)
Delphine Blue (-1967-1982)
Accent Red (-1967-1982)
Buttercup (Yellow) (1969-1983)
Charm Blue (1979-1983)
Gray (1971-73 or 74, perhaps also 1950s-early 1960s)
Lime Green (1977-1982)
Peacock Blue (-1967-73 or 74)
Cinnamon (Brown) (1967-1983)
Moss Green (-1967-1983)