Did you ever drink out of a Welch's jelly jar glass?

You could find jelly jars with cartoon favorites, dinosaurs, and even the muppets!

Mason jars have become synonamous with trendy, pinterest-worthy drinks. Over the past several years, it has become more and more commonplace to see hip restaurants serving everything from cocktails to dessert in these canning staples. Party and wedding inspiration pages online will suggest long lists of how to make the cutest mason jar centerpieces, drinks, and decorations.

But long before the mason jar craze, we were drinking out of an entirely different kind of jar: a jelly jar.

In the early 1950s, the Welch's Company, known for their juices and fruit spreads, sponsored The Howdy Doody Show. A few years later, Welch's had a new idea — they'd print familiar Howdy Doody characters on their glass jelly jars! Kids would beg their parents to buy the brand with their favorite show on it, and penny-saving parents could keep and reuse the jar as a drinking glass. The first glasses even came with a character's face on the bottom, presumably to encourage kids to finish their glass.

Through the '50s, '60s, and '70s, we got a slew of different glass designs, usually featuring familiar cartoon faces. Collections included The Flintones, characters from Archie comics, and Warner Bros. cartoons like Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tweety Bird, and more. There were usually 6-8 designs in each collection, and some people made goals of collecting the entire series. 

However, after 1978, the colorful printed glasses suddenly vanished.

"What happened," said Dan Dillon, vice president for marketing at Welch's, in a 1989 article, "was a change in glass technology. The old mode of making glass, called full-press technology, became too expensive and was replaced by a new process, called press-and-blow technology. This new process produces a thinner glass."

This new, thinner glass led to chipping when the old-style lids were taken off. So Welch's transferred to the screw-top lids that we're still using today. Unfortunately, the new tops of glasses that went with these lids was not very appealing as a drinking glass, so the jelly jar glass faded away.

Until 1988.

Welch's, Dillon said, knew that the drinking jar glasses were special, and kept searching for a way to bring them back. After a decade of work, the company came up with a unique "type of plastic and metal lid that both vacuum seals the jelly and pops off with no danger of chipping the glass."

The company made a return to jelly jar drinking glasses with a line of realistic dinosaur designs, but soon went back to their cartoon roots. Through the Nineties, kids could find Welch's jelly glasses with Bugs Bunny, Tom and Jerry, Dr. Suess, The Muppets, and the Lion King, among others. By the 2000s you could even find Pokémon and Peanuts!

Post-2002 jelly jar glasses are hard to find information on. For whatever reason, the popularity waned again. Maybe the availability of plastic jelly containers made the glass jars less appealing. 

However, there is still a vibrant community of collectors and jelly jar glass afficionados. Museum exhibits dedicated to the collection of these glasses have even been opened.

So, do you remember these unique drinking glasses? Which ones did you have?

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Chrislongski 25 days ago
Was just thinking about the handy old jelly jar glasses a few days ago. Seems like a great idea to bring back in these Eco times...
BugsBunny1 1 month ago
I found 2 1991 Tom and Jerry Welch's glasses tom and Jerry playing soccer and Jerry is on a kite from the thrift store this month I put a Christmas drink egg nog in the glass since egg nog came out early this month
nurbles 2 months ago
I drank my morning OJ from one this morning! I still have two - but mine are less than 20 years old, not the originals from my childhood in the '60s & '70s.
Madalyn 2 months ago
I'd have to look through my kitchen cabinets, but I'm sure I could find a couple Welch's jelly jar glasses! they were pretty sturdy, though the paint (used to display the cartoon characters) faded in the dishwasher. This would be a good time to bring them back, what with recycling/reusing glass items.
MTEVENS 2 months ago
Yes, we had the Welch's jelly glasses with all different cartoon characters. In fact, one year we moved into a house with a concord grape arbor, and our landlady showed my Mom how to make jelly out of the grapes. She refilled the glasses with her own jelly, and then poured melted parafin on top to seal it in.
JHP 2 months ago
jelly jars - I remember some that had pirates on them - maybe 16 - 20 oz
RobertMoe 2 months ago

WHEN I WAS A CHILD, MY MOTHER SERVER OUT MOSNING ORANGE JUICE IN WELCH'S JELLY GLASSES. AT 76 I NO LONGER HAVE ORANGE JUICE, BUT TAKE MY MORNING MEDS WITH A WELCH'S TOM AND JERRY JELLY GLASS OF MILK!!! LOVE IT!
gelinas 2 months ago
We had a complete set and used them daily! Love the memories ❤
Lacey 2 months ago
Do I ever.
My grandmother had a full set of these and I automatically associated them with her. It was one of those quirky little things that only grandma's had in their house.
Thanks for the memories.
Marilyn 2 months ago
Hi, Didn't have welch's jelly jars,we had bama jelly glasses that were small they had cartoon characters in them to.I still have some of them they are a set of snow white &the seven dwarfs,I used to collect glasses,have everything from happy ays to ET mickeymouse,star wars,I don't think there's much I don't have.
b 2 months ago
Still have them from the early sixties and on. Also have the McDonalds glasses too.
Flintster 2 months ago
I remember my Flintstone's glass. My dad would pour some beer in it for me. Pretty much knocked me out. That way he and my mom could have some "quality time" I was about 3 years old.
Yup. True fact.
Mitchell 2 months ago
I had Archie and Superman jelly glasses, as well. :)
PRINCETON 2 months ago
Talk about sparking a memory cord from my childhood!... I do remember having these jelly glasses but not really making an effort to collect them as a kid... I don't know or remember what happened to them... I seem to have a vague memory of them breaking (and not from me dropping them) for some reason... which is odd because I do remember the glass jar being thick... I'm sure; f I think hard enough; I could remember the fate of some of them...
JerryGuinn 2 months ago
Had several of them at my Grandma's house. She probably would've thrown them out if it weren't for me.
nightshade 2 months ago
I was going to say we have a set of pokemon ones around here somewhere might be work a few bucks .......
Zip 2 months ago
I believe I do remember those jars and possibly drinking from them. However, I do distinctly remember using my mom's molasses jars for collecting June bugs. I think the fumes killed them.
TAJE58 2 months ago
I remember only being allowed to have One jelly glass jar. Of course Bugs Bunny was the only One I wanted. My Mom warned me that if I did not take care of my One jar, I would not get another. I had that glass from age 6 to age 10! For me that was an excellent record!
KJExpress TAJE58 2 months ago
What pressure! I would have broken mine for sure after one week! 😫
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