The snow globe has a long and storied history. It’s origins can be traced back to the 1878 Paris Universal Exposition and a local glassware firm. Snow globes were again an item in 1889, at the Paris Universal Exposition. The Perzy family of Vienna painstakingly hand crafted snow globes in the early 1900’s opening a shop that exists even today, the Original Wiener Schneekugel Manufaktur. In 1927, a Pittsburgh man named Joseph Garaja’s contribution to snow globe manufacturing was in pioneering the method of assembling the globes underwater to ensure they were entirely filled and it revolutionized the snow globe industry. By the 1950s, innovation in plastics and injection molding meant that snow globes could be made even more cheaply. The snow or “flitter” inside the globe could be made from plastics and the water filling the globes was also frequently mixed with glycol, to make the snow fall more slowly. By the 1940’s and 1950’s snow globes were being used as props in movies so mass marketing ensued and as we all know the rest is history.
Nature creates it’s own “snow globes” as I walk the beach on a cold but sunny January day. With the sun in a low position in the southern sky in the northern hemisphere, the ice is translucent as you walk along allowing light to pass through creating glowing “snow globes” in the process along the beach. Photos taken January 23, 2022. Pictures below click on them to enlarge.