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The Governor of West Virginia visits the Blenko Factory, and representatives of the Blenko Four were lucky enough to be there

On August 25th, 2005 the Governor of West Virginia, Joe Manchin and his lovely First Lady, Gayle. By an odd coincidence, the last time a Governor of West Virginia visited, it was on August 25th, 1966. The governor was visiting the factory at the request of the Blenko Project, which is a project started by student Hillary Homburg to help determine the future of the Blenko Glass Company over the next 100 years. This page has many photos of our trip to the Blenko Factory.

Photos by Tammy Kosla and Teri DiLibero- Commentary by Teri DiLibero

Milton welcoming committee.

In the Visitors Center. I think they should put the 5929L's back.


The Antique Glass area.

Blenko's newest order taker, Tammy. Careful with her, if you say you would like 'one', she will order you '12'.


Glass plans.

Famous Blenko mold for the 'Family of Man' piece.


Mr. Blenko and Tammy discussing something in a vintage Blenko catalog.

Getting ready for the Governors' visit.


An incredible piece that will be presented to Governor Manchin.

Tammy in the candy store of Blenko history.


Mr. Blenko was very kind to take us on a tour of his home. This is a photo of his family crest. Done with Blenko Antique glass of course.

This is an old Husted award winning form that Mr. Blenko has. This is the Styrofoam form that would be poured and lost when made.


A brick in the Blenko home from the White House.

The shower stall.



A cross that was designed by Don Shepherd and given to Mr. Blenko.


The entry way. Blenko dalles grace the entry. The owl is a drawing by Richard Blenko when he was a child.



Mr. Blenko's desk at the office. Also designed by Don Shepherd for Herman Miller.



This is 'The Man'. William Blenko.


The Governor arrives.



The Governor holds an impromptu press conference in the Blenko office.


Photos from the Governors visit in 1966.


The tour. Rodney makes a spin bowl.

For the Governors visit, the workers made large fish.


Mike speaks with the Governor. Anyone notice what is missing from this photo?

Dave Osburn is the tour guide for the day.


Finishing the fish.

Governor Manchin and Randy Rider.


Tammy Kosla, Governor Manchin, William Blenko, First Lady Gayle Manchin.


Grinding a fish.


The Governor says, "Hmmm... nice fish".


This is the Governor's 'Go To' man.



Secretary of the Blenko Collector's Society, Cheri Ooten.


Hey, this Security Detail thing is kind of cool.




William Blenko, Teri DiLibero, Governor Manchin, & Gayle Manchin.


Governor Manchin signs the Blenko Visitors register.

'Family of Man'

While we were visiting, Mr. Blenko was kind enough to allow the guys in the shop to make the Family of Man piece for the Visitors Center & one for himself. Thank you Bill.

The Family of Man is a fairly difficult piece to make, but Dave and the crew were up to the task.


One of the pieces came out with a heat crack. Rodney made a valiant attempt to destroy the piece.





Still intact.

Still intact!


The piece was sent off to polishing and ground to a shorter height. I will post that picture a bit later.

Here is one in grinding getting ready for polishing.


The finished pieces.


Mr. Blenko has one now and one will go to the Visitor's Center.

Friday started out with me locking my keys in my car. Here are a couple more very helpful Blenko employees..



They look like they are having a bit too much fun getting into my car.

Ok, up next.. . Daniel. We ended up calling a locksmith.


The cats of Blenko. Notice the box behind the kitty... He may be up to something.


Mr. Blenko poses for a photo.


Mr. Blenko and Teri

Mr. Blenko, Teri & Cheri having a good laugh.





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