2014 NIA Hall of Fame Inductee

 Ralph Hemingray 


Ralph Gray Hemingray knew nothing of the insulator collecting hobby, but was one of the early pioneers in the production of glass insulators.  He was very influential in improving the glass insulator and the manufacturing processes for them.

The Hemingray Glass Company was formed by the partnership of Robert Hemingray, senior partner, and Ralph Gray, partner, in 1848 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  It was initially called Gray & Hemingray until the passing of Ralph Gray in 1863.  The company went through several names until in 1870 it was called the Hemingray Glass Company.  While the largest glass insulator manufacturing company, a variety of other glass objects were also produced including oil lamps, jars, bottles, etc.

Ralph Gray Hemingray was born March 31, 1852.  He was the first born son of Robert Hemingray and had two brothers, all of which were active in the glass company.  Ralph was listed as superintendent in1874, Vice President in 1880, and President in 1898.  It was Ralph that oversaw the new plant being built in Muncie, Indiana beginning in 1888.

Ralph Hemingray was holder of several insulator related patents including a patent for a glass batch mixer and multiple patents for glass presses.  However, the most famous of all was the patent for drip points issued to Ralph Hemingray and James C. Gill on May 2, 1893.

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