California Sea Glass – History in Your Hands

Overall Ceramic and Pottery Shards

Overall Ceramic and Pottery Shards

Overall Colorful Sea Glass Pieces

Overall Colorful Sea Glass Pieces

This ceramic piece says 1945 – the year World War II ended.

This ceramic piece says 1945 – the year World War II ended.

This ceramic piece says Japan and includes a rising sun and Japanese characters, which dates it to the late 1940s. One of the characters on the bottom line refers to water, and it may be part of the name of the manufacturer.

This ceramic piece says Japan and includes a rising sun and Japanese characters, which dates it to the late 1940s. One of the characters on the bottom line refers to water, and it may be part of the name of the manufacturer.

This ceramic piece has a beautiful blue willow pattern – the most popular pattern in the history of dinnerware.

This ceramic piece has a beautiful blue willow pattern – the most popular pattern in the history of dinnerware.

The writing on this piece ends in “erey” – perhaps it is part of the word “Monterey”.

The writing on this piece ends in “erey” – perhaps it is part of the word “Monterey”.

This unique piece is chicken wire embedded in textured striated glass (used for reinforcement and safety glass in cabinets, plus windows at schools and fire stations). This is a hot new vintage glass being recreated for current products. A piece of sea glass half this size was recently posted for sale on eBay with a starting bid of $69.99.

This unique piece is chicken wire embedded in textured striated glass (used for reinforcement and safety glass in cabinets, plus windows at schools and fire stations). This is a hot new vintage glass being recreated for current products. A piece of sea glass half this size was recently posted for sale on eBay with a starting bid of $69.99.

This must-have piece of glass is Jadite – opaque green glassware dating to the 1930s. It was so favored by Martha Stewart that she reintroduced this glass to modern times.

This must-have piece of glass is Jadite – opaque green glassware dating to the 1930s. It was so favored by Martha Stewart that she reintroduced this glass to modern times.

This ceramic piece is decorated with a beautiful pink pattern - perhaps flowers.

This ceramic piece is decorated with a beautiful pink pattern – perhaps flowers.

This ceramic piece is a bright green chartreuse color – perhaps Fiestaware from the 1950s.

This ceramic piece is a bright green chartreuse color – perhaps Fiestaware from the 1950s.

This clear glass piece is a bottle top ring. It was so highly prized by Calvin Klein that he dressed his best models in sea glass rings.

This clear glass piece is a bottle top ring. It was so highly prized by Calvin Klein that he dressed his best models in sea glass rings.

This piece is part of a striped ceramic plate.

This piece is part of a striped ceramic plate.

Recently we found amazing sea glass at Seaside Beach, California (near Monterey). We found some of the pieces on the beach, but Richard noticed that the best pieces were out at the surf line. After I saw a piece I just HAD to have, I took off my shoes and socks and went into the 50 degree ocean water – brrrrrrrr! Although I got soaked, it was worth it. Each piece of glass tells a story – it is like holding a piece of history in your hand. All of the sea glass is worn smooth and pitted by ocean weathering, so it is at least 50 years old. If you recognize or know more about any of these pieces of glass, please let me know.

About Pam
Richard and Pam lived in the San Francisco Bay Area 14 years (1987-1999 and 2008-2011). They lived in Florida 13 years previously, until returning in July 2011 to present. They hope their photography will encourage you to get out and discover nature's beauty in your own backyard, parks, and wild places. Click on any pictures on this blog to see them full size with additional details.

14 Responses to California Sea Glass – History in Your Hands

  1. Kongo says:

    What a very clever and interesting post. It gives you pause to stop and look at the little things that surround us. Thank you!

    • Pam says:

      I was so excited by the variety of sea glass. Once I started looking up what the pieces were, I just couldn’t believe how much history was revealed by each piece. It was so fascinating! A retired couple collecting sea glass joined me in the surf.

  2. Arindam Saha says:

    Very Interesting indeed

  3. When we lived on the coast in Oregon, we collected sea glass. What fun! Also, with some luck and a sharp eye, we could find agates. It made a trip to the beach even more fun. ~James

    • Pam says:

      I love agates! We used to have a good beach to find them south of San Francisco. Really cool was how they glowed under a blacklight.

  4. elisaruland says:

    Each example is an interesting piece of history. Thank you for sharing!
    Elisa

  5. What a charming post! Have you taken a similarly-creative approach to display these snippets of history?

    • Pam says:

      Thank you so much! Still deciding on how to display these items. I stopped by your blog and enjoyed very much reading your “About” page. It’s a beautiful website!

      • Thank you for your kind words about my site, Pam. The travel & photography are something I’m passionate about, and I’m glad that comes through.

        Happy we crossed paths & until next time. 🙂

  6. skleedom says:

    Brilliant post! We were recently in Jackson, Wyoming and purchased a bracelet from a local artist made of sea glass from California. Ironic since we were tourists from the California Coast. That antidote aside; I’ve been to the beach here hundred of times and never thought to look for sea glass. What an eye you have!

    • Pam says:

      I love Jackson! That must have been fun! The best sea glass locations that we found in California were Seaside (just north of Monterey) and Fort Bragg (search sea glass in “Go” box in upper right of naturetime home page). With practice you get better at spotting it. Good luck! If you have any questions, I’ll be happy to give tips.

  7. Melissa kirk says:

    I was recently in South Africa and my sister tie found a piece of seaglass with rust inside… I didn’t know what it was. The next day I found a larger piece with the wire inside! So interesting and to see it here too! I also found two seaglass marbles and a bottle stopper!

    • Pam says:

      I am so impressed with the sea glass you found in South Africa! Jackpot! I’ve never found marbles or a stopper. I find it all so interesting and beautiful. They are little treasures that you can hold in your hand. Good luck with future sea glass hunting – I would love hearing more about it!

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