TIME FRAME. When I first wrote these jars up several years ago . We had not done full research on the St Johns Glass Co. So my first post to this site reflected my incomplete info . So as of July 2019 , I replaced the old info with this.
With the opening of the St Johns Glass in 1875 Charles Foster returned from the U.S. as a shareholder. I believe he brought several used moulds to begin with. Moulds were expensive and a new company would want to cut some costs. G W Foster was acting as a wholesale merchant for a few glass works selling their products, so access to used moulds could have been through him .
Quarts .... Base #'s 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5.
The #1 & #2 base moulds are EXCELSIOR IMPROVED
The #3 & #4 are the EMPRESS
As for dating the Empress, Queen Victoria became Empress of India ( according to a British site May 1st 1876, another site has by 1877.)
BASE #5 ... Is again a EXCELSIOR IMPROVED
The first 4 moulds ( I guess, as I don't have a #4 ) have the U.S. style 4 threads (The U.S. Excelsior Improved jars also have the 4 threads ) yet the #5 has the more common 3 threads , it must have been a later addition.
NO EMBOSSING SAME BASE #
Some of these jars are later found with no embossing having been turned out to erase the embossing.
I do not have the EMPRESS base #3 or #4.
However about 10 years ago I got the un embossed Empress mould #3 on ebay . I was offered a box of about 10 more no embossing all of them came with TGCo lids and the glass coulor of the jar and lid seemed to match.. He had the # 4 , which I was interested in if he had a price for it. In the end he must have got a better offer and sold them all together.
All moulds from Burlington went to TGCo in 1897 and Hamilton's ones in 1898. In 1926 all were returned to Hamilton and they made a mould list of the ones they were going to use. These were not in that list. Montreal likely sent a few moulds to TGCo also, so these could have been in them.
HALF GALLON MOULDS These come in moulds #1, #2, & #3
I have only the #2 as an Excelsior Improved
I have 3 - #3 no embossing jars from the same mould.
The #2 has 3 threads and the #3 has 4 threads.
I would like to have had all moulds to do this write up but feel this info so far is correct. If I get more info I'll add it
One on left is the U.S. jar Note lip .
Since I posted this write up I came across the jar above.
It has the normal lip finish like the Canadian ones .
I had put in the post on The / EGCo. logo / Imperial , that the first moulds were likely used moulds from the U.S . reworked . This one ( above ) is very much like the Canadian Excelsior Improved half gallon. Even the 2 on the base is almost identical.
The base 2 is oriented differently and the embossing of the letters is not exactly the same but likely the same mould maker. This leads me to think the first U.S. maker of the Excelsior jars sold moulds to the EGCo. works. Later another glass works made the Excelsior Improved with the odd type lip.
In Ebay listings I found many of the arched Excelsior with straight Improved to be coming out of the eastern states. Yet they are listed as Canadian. These also have a later base style like the NAGCo jars. There is NO period after Improved.
U.S JARS .... There are listings for the U.S. varients but many of the jars considered Canadian in Excelsior Improved listings in the Red Book are not Canadian. In looking at the lip finish the very top of the U.S. made ones have an odd tapered lip (slanting inward to the lip) These are like the Dexter jars. In Ebay listings I found many of the arched Excelsior with straight Improved to be coming out of the eastern states. Yet they are listed as Canadian.These also have a later base style like the NAGCo jars. There is NO period after Improved .
The Canadian made ones have the normal end of mould lip , with a slight bulge where the blow over is ground off.
They also have the old style base with the small push up like the first EGCo. mould. There IS a period after Improved .
STRAIGHT LINE EMBOSSING (two lines) CANADIAN
Quarts .. I believe these jars are reworked moulds from a different jar name . ( used moulds from a U.S. works)
base # 1 Old style base ,word Excelsior is 4 in. up from base and 3 & 7/8ths in. wide , word Improved is 3 & 1/2 in. wide .This jar has a smooth tapered curve on the sides .
base # 2 A fellow collector has this jar in base # 2
base # 5 Old style base , word Excelsior is 4 in. up from base and 3 & 9/16ths in. wide , word Improved is 3 & 5/16ths in. wide . The sides of this jar go up with less taper and have a stronger shoulder at the top.
Half gallons .. I have only base # 2 there is also a base # 1 and # 3
base # 1. A fellow collector has this jar in base # 1
base # 2 .Old style base , word Excelsior is 4 & 11/16ths up from base and 3 & 9/16ths in. wide , word Improved is 3 & 1/4 in. wide. It's sides are like the base # 5 quart.
base # 3. A fellow collector has this jar in base # 3
Below are the base # 2 half gallon & the # 5 quart