Answered By: Nancy Magrath Last Updated: Oct 19, 2016 Views: 13
Thanks for your question. Your photos of the Charm Stick with the tags are very helpful in identifying the object. The tag mentions Nailsea Glass as the manufacturer and we have several books and articles about that group of English glasshouses in our collection. There are two bibliographies attached for Novelty Glass, also known as whimsies or friggers, all of which mention Nailsea Glass. Also have one for glass canes. I did not find any references to “charm sticks or wands”. All seemed to mention them as canes in the glass literature.
Whimsies were usually non-production items made at the end of the day by glassworkers for their own use and enjoyment; canes being a frequent form.
Attached is a copy of a page from Nailsea Glass by Keith Vincent about canes. It has examples of canes and a short mention of the superstitions associated with them. I found the Soane book from 1847 in google books if you wanted more information about the folklore. Also found a book, The Folklore of Cornwall by Tony Deane and Tony Shaw (1975) that might have more about the customs, etc.
Also attached is an article entitled "Lucky Glass Walking Sticks."
I hope the information proves helpful. Let us know if you need anything else. You can request materials from the bibliographies through interlibrary loan if needed. All must be used within a library.