This Photo Gallery of Fenton's 5" Hen on Nest, ware
#5186, features the various Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes
arranged in the chronological order in which they were
made.

Currently in the works is a site wide search engine that will help
make finding the hen or rooster you're seeking information
and/or photos of easier and quicker.
The relatively extensive length of time for the run of Fenton's highly collectible, very popular,
mould # 5186, the 5" hen detailed hen top on a unqiuely arched base began in 1968, less
than a year after the Fenton Art Glass Company introduced their revised 8" Hen on a new
scalloped rim Nest.  

The 5" Fenton hen on nest debuted in Milk Glass in 1968 as ware # 5186 MI. By year's end
2012 after 45 years of production, Fenton mould #5186 had been produced in well over 58
inline colors, treatments and/or painted designs, and glass types!
Fenton's #5186, 5" hen on
nest was only produced here in the USA.   "Never used or opened" Fenton 5" hen on nest
dishes can still be found in their original boxes, although the date they may have been made
during may have been years ago, from among the inventory of Sellers operating out of brick
and mortar and/or online venues.  Also available in these many online secondary market
venues are older, less common Fenton hen on nest dishes which continue to be among one of
the top collectibles in its category.

Production of Fenton's first, 2 piece 5" Milk Glass Hen on Nest in 1967 continued well into
1972. By then Fenton's #5186, 5" hen on nest was also being manufactured in Carnival,
ware #5186 CN, a hand painted, ("HP" is a commonly used abbreviation for  items decorated
with painted designs), version of the 5: hen on nest in Milk Glass, #5186 MD, and in a
gorgeous slag mix of a baby blue and white, called Blue Marble, or Blue Slag, #5186 MB. With
the exception of a half year's run of the 5" hen on nest in Carnival, almost all First Quality
#5186 Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes were embedded with Fenton's logo. (see below for
examples)

Each Fenton item, or ware, has its own ware number which can be found on a scored sticker
also containing Fenton's MSRP. This sticker can be separated at the scored area to leave only
the ware number showing.
Ware numbers for their 5" hen on nest dishes are based on mould
#5186, used to manufacture Fenton's 5" hen on nest. These ware numbers speak volumes
about specific Fenton hen on nest dishes to those who know what to look for!
Fenton ware
numbers assigned to completed 5" hen on nest dishes include mould #5186, based on the
mould(s) used to produce the completed, 2 part hen on nest, followed by a suffixed Color
Code consisting of two letters, or a digit and a letter, which identify the actual Fenton names
assigned to each color, treatment &/or painted decorative design used on their 5" hen on nest
dishes.
Photo Gallery of Fenton
5" Hen on Nest #5186
from 1968-2012
With regard to Fenton Art Glass, the term "embedded logo" refers to the permanent
brand or logo marking literally molded into the glass. Embedded logos were not used
on Fenton's wares until the 1970s. The original embedded logo used by Fenton was
introduced during 1971, prior to Fenton's use of Decade Indicators. The sticker
shown here is occasionally seen on some older Fenton Hens. However, a sticker
alone does not prove an item is the authentic Fenton brand. Surprisingly, while
putting this site together in 2003, I bought a roll of unused Fenton stickers-on eBay,
the very first day I looked.  Unfortunately,  stickers such as these have been seen
stuck on any glass item-especially those not the Fenton brand!
Below is a photo of the silver Fenton sticker, with the hen on nest's ware #5186 BT.
This appears to be in the center of the base's interior.
In 2007, Fenton underwent a massive restructuring of the company-and with that
came some new Fenton logos, which each represent something different.
Fenton hen on nest and rooster enthusiasts were thrilled to find these highly
collectible items continue to be made in the USA, and marked with a special
embedded logo, reserved for wares Fenton elected to continue to produce in the
USA! The new logos used with these items say just that, as clearly shown in the
Chameleon Green logo used for Fenton's Hen Egg Plate done in Chameleon Glass, in
2009.
SIZE:
Fenton #5186 5" HEN ON NEST MEASUREMENTS-
Overall Measures about : 5-1/2" X 4-1/4" X 3-1/2"
TOP-5 1/2" Long by 4 3/8" Wide by 4 1/4" High.
Base 5-3/8"x 4-1/8· Top 4-5/8"x 3-1/16"

From tip of her tail to the tip of her beak she is 5 1/4" her nest is 5 1/4" long by 4" wide.
Fenton oval logo on the bottom with an "8" and has the most colorful iridescence to it.
It is Fenton ware # 5186 PQ and was produced in 1998.
Measures approx. 5 1/2"w x 4 1/2"h
Measures 4.5 inches tall, and 5 inches by 3 inches, and the bowl measures 1.5 inches deep.
Occasionally, Fenton's wares, including their hen on nest dishes, special ordered by QVC,
Rosso, and other companies planning to sell Fenton wares on their own have the letter "C" or
another letter, as a prefix to indicate this item was a special order and not produced for sale
by Fenton and its Dealers. Often these items are marked with a small "Fancy script F in a
Circle" logo marking the interior of the hen top. This can be embedded, or in some cases was
permanently added with green ink.

Some colors, treatments, and even painted decorations used for Fenton's #5186 hen on nest
appear to be very similar, or even the same. Yet, each Fenton color is different from the
others. In some instances the differences between these colors can be very subtle and quite
difficult to correctly identify from Internet photos. Subtle changes in colors can be attributed
to the addition of opalescence, or iridescence to a previously used color of glass. These
subtle colors/treatments can be especially difficult to detect from photos alone, yet are has a
different name assigned by Fenton.

As more Fenton's colors were introduced they actually became less difficult to determine,
thanks to Fenton's use of what we call a Decade Indicator.
In 1980, to the delight of collectors, Fenton began embedding a (very) tiny number, which
we refer to as a Decade Indicator, with their logos. These tiny numbers have proven to be a
valuable aid to collectors seeking to determine which colors are which.

Using Fenton's embedded Decade Indicator can help determine which colors are which,
based on the decade during which the Fenton hen or rooster was made since most similar
colors were made years apart. Being able to recognize or determine colors can help
collectors avoid duplicate hen on nest purchases, even when the colors/treatments of the
hens and roosters seem almost identical.

At one point it would have been taken for granted that all Fenton was made in the USA,
however with Fenton's recent restructuring in 2007, that may not have remained the case
since other wares began to be made overseas. By year's end 2012, all Fenton Hen on nest
dishes, Roosters, Turkey Boxes, Bunny Boxes & Rooster Boxes were still made in the
USA-and marked as such. (see green logo in the next section)
The subtle differences between similar colors of Fenton's #5186,
5" hen on nest dishes can be difficult to determine from the
photos used on many Internet Market Venues, including eBay.  
Further complicating the issue of determining which colors are
which, are Sellers who are unfamiliar with Fenton's Glass Colors
&/or treatments, frequently describe colors  subjectively, and not
necessarily by the actual color, treatment &/or glass type
assigned by Fenton. The last 2 letters, or a combination of a
number and a letter, are used by Fenton as
Color Codes and
complete the ware number for specific hen on nest dishes.

DECADE INDICATORS-A useful aid to collectors of all types of Fenton wares!
.
The tiny numbers embedded with Fenton's logos, which we call Decade Indicators, were put into
use by Fenton in 1980 to permanently mark during which Decade and item was made, from the
1980's to the last item produced by Fenton.
These tiny numbers, or Decade Indicators, have proven invaluable to Fenton collectors and
enthusiasts, especially those who chose to collect and trade via online venues, when the colors
of the same hen on nest may look vastly different from computer to computer-and fr because
knowing which decade a Fenton hen or rooster was made during, together with a list of what
hens were made when, can help make determining colors much easier.






Understanding Decade Indicators is easy. Fenton wares with embedded logos, but without a tiny
number, or Decade Indicator marks wares manufactured during the 1970's.  Logos with Decade
Indicators embedded with the Logos, such as those shown above, represent the decade during
which that particular item was manufactured during. This practice, which is helpful to Collectors,
was originally put into use in the early 1980's, with the number 8 used to mark items produced
during the 1980's, those marked with a 9 representing wares from the 1990's, and those with
the 0 used to identify items made after 1999.  Its said that wares made after 2009 will be
marked with a 10. Below in the Gallery of Hens, are both illustrations of what they look like, and
an actual photo of the logo which shows the Decade Indicator as it appears on the actual hen's
base. In 2008 the addition of the Bolded letters USA were added to all hen on nest & rooster box
dishes.
The illustrations with the logos used on Fenton's Hen on
Nest dishes, showing the Decade Indicators, for the 1970's
(no number), the 1980's, the 1990's, and wares made after
1999. To the upper right is one of Fenton's new logos which
shows their Logo, Decade Indicator, and "USA" which
means that this Fenton item was made in the USA.

Often, Fenton hen on nest dishes special ordered by QVC for
production by Fenton, with a ware number that has the letter "C"
as a prefix can have a small "Fancy script F in a Circle" logo marking
the interior of the hen top. This can be embedded, or in some cases
permanently added in green.
In addition to defining colors, via the use of Fenton's
Color Codes, some ware numbers, such as those special
ordered by QVC and Rosso, may have a letter prefix, such
as the "C" which is used for QVC's items. This indicates
Fenton produced the hen on nest through special order
by companies, such as QVC and Rosso, who market and
sell their special ordered Fenton items through their own
company. This is as opposed to the majority of in-line hen
authorized Dealers.



The variety of descriptions used by Sellers who are not
familiar with Fenton's glass colors but have them listed
for sale using their own words to subjectively describe
the color.
    Fenton is known for their strict quality control. Items that do not pass
    Fenton's quality control are also permanently  marked by Fenton to
    identify those items that are not considered First Quality, but instead are
    "seconds." Some of the more common methods used for identifying these
    wares that are not First Quality are shown below.

    BUYERS BEWARE!!  Interestingly, some eBay Sellers believe the addition
    of a star to a Fenton ware indicate its "star quality" when that is far from
    the truth!
Below are some of the permanent marks used by Fenton to identify wares
which failed to pass Fenton's "strict" quality control.
Left to right-"Dancing Flame," "Stars," or Single Star," and the "Block F."
Fenton also removed all the LE Numbers from wares not of First Quality, even if
intended for a Limited Editions.

Fenton's claim of the 5" hen on nest #5186 mould as being their own,
with its mould origins attributed to Fenton, by Fenton, is despite
controversy from experts who uncovered evidence of sorts that infers
Fenton may not have been the creators of the 5" hen on the arched nest.
A hen top with a very similar size and shape on an arched base, also
appearing identical to that of Fenton's, was advertised by the Butler
Brothers., 67 years before Fenton put their 5" hen on the arched base
into production.

Fenton continues to claim their 5" hen on nest as their own, with its
mould origins attributed to Fenton, and created by Fenton, despite
controversial statements from experts who claim to have uncovered
evidence of sorts which infers Fenton may not have been the creators of
the 5" hen on the arched nest. A hen top with a very similar size and
shape on an arched base, also appearing identical to that of Fenton's, was
advertised by the Butler Bros., 67 years before Fenton put their 5" hen
into production.  (scan courtesy of Mrs. Shirley Smith)
QUICK DETAILS: size: 4 1/8 inches high by 5 1/2 inches long by 4 1/4 inches wide

  • The compact 5" Fenton Hen on Nest features a beautiful hen top, with a fully detailed face, a defined cowl, 6 eggs
    of varying sizes, arranged with a pair of eggs of 2 different sizes on each side of the breast.
  • A single egg is located in the area just under the tail, before the hen's body rises from its rim upwards to the base
    of the tail.  
  • Also molded into the hen top is a split tail which rises from the hen's back at a very steep angle, with the rear
    edge of the tail almost appearing to be perpendicular to the level surface it sits on. This tail, as with the tail of the
    larger Fenton hen tops lacks any scallops or indentations on any edge of the tail.  An evenly cross hatched design
    of "grass" trims the area along the outer circumference of the #5186 hen top's rim.  
  • A pair of eggs consisting of two different sizes is located near the left front of the hen, a smaller pair of eggs is on
    the right front side, and single eggs of the same size are located on either side of the tail.
  • This hen features a total of 6 eggs, 4 front and 2 in the rear.
  • The 5 inch, ware #5186 Fenton hen top measures about 4-5/8" long from rim end to end, by 3-5/8" wide from side
    to side.
  • The height from the hen top's rim to the tip of her tail measures about 3-1/16". The rim of this hen top measures
    nearly 1/2" in width from the outer to the inside edge.
  • One of the most obvious differences is the base or nest used with Fenton's 5" hen on nest.  In keeping with the
    Fenton Company's public statements about their 5" hen on nest being their own* there are no other hen tops at
    this time which sit on the beautiful base with its 10 arches, that form the sides, rising from bottom to top, where
    the arches flare out slightly, forming 10 broad petals along the upper rim of the base.
  • There are many hen on nest dishes by other makers listed as Fenton and which at first glance may seem to
    resemble Fenton's 5" hen on nest ware/mould # 5186.  However, a closer look can reveal the important differences
    found between the features of Fenton's glass hen on nest dishes, and the many other, similar styled brands and
    makes of hen on nest dishes often seen listed on eBay & other secondary online marketplaces-and quite frequently
    listed as Fenton, when they are not.  
  • One of the most obvious, clearly visible differences can be seen in the base or nest used with Fenton's 5" hen on
    nest #5186.  In keeping with the Fenton Company's public statements about the history of their 5" hen on nest as
    being their own* there are no other hen tops at this time which sit on the beautiful base with its 10 arches, that
    form the sides, rising from bottom to top, where the arches flare out slightly, forming 10 broad petals along the
    upper rim of the base.
  • There are many hen on nest dishes by other makers in the 4.5 to 7" range, which at first glance resemble Fenton's
    5" hen top, although a closer look will reveal the differences between the other brands and makes of hen on nest
    dishes, and Fenton's 5", ware #5186, hen on nest. One of the most obvious differences is the base or nest used with
    Fenton's 5" hen on nest.  In keeping with the Fenton Company's public statements about their 5" hen on nest being
    their own* there are no other hen tops at this time which sit on the beautiful base with its 10 arches, that form
    the sides, rising from bottom to top, where the arches flare out slightly, forming 10 broad petals along the upper
    rim of the base.
Fenton's claim of their 5" hen on nest as their own, with its mould origins
attributed to Fenton, by Fenton, is despite controversy from experts who
uncovered evidence of sorts that infers Fenton may not have been the
creators of the 5" hen on the arched nest. A hen top with a very similar size
and shape on an arched base, also appearing identical to that of Fenton's, was
advertised by the Butler Bros., 67 years before Fenton put their 5" hen into
production.  (scan courtesy of Mrs. Shirley Smith)

There are some hen on nest dishes that appear identical to Fenton's, however
on close inspection those hen on nest dishes, which have been seen in clear,
green and "electric" blue, have a different design for the trim around the
circumference of the hen top's rim.  The space around Fenton's hen top is
accented with nearly perfect, cross hatched "grass" which continues around
the circumference of the hen top. Fenton's "grass" trim is much different in
appearance from the rather random design on the hen top rims of the so-called
prototypes, which do not have evenly spaced criss-crossed "grass" along the
hen outer rim.  Instead the space around the hen top rim of the prototypes
have sporadically placed diagonal lines, all facing in the same direction.  Our
clear glass prototype also has struts in the space between the split tail, which
of course Fenton's final hen on nest mould does not have.


Some hen on nest dishes have been seen in clear, green and "electric" blue
which appear identical to Fenton's 5" hen on nest #5186, at times even when
inspected closely in hand.  A close inspection of the hen top's rim of those
hen on nest dishes reveals a difference between its design, and that of the
rim of an authentic Fenton 5" hen on nest # 5186. When compared, the
differences are clearly visible.  The space around the authentic Fenton 5"
hen top is accented with a nearly perfect, cross hatched "grass" design which
continues around the circumference of the entire hen top.  Fenton's "grass"
trim is in contrast to the much different, rather random design on the hen
tops of the so-called prototypes. Unlike Fenton's 5" hen tops, the tops to the
prototypes do not have evenly spaced criss-crossed "grass" along the hen
outer rim.  Instead the space around the hen top rim of the prototypes have
sporadically placed diagonal lines, all facing in the same direction.  Our clear
glass prototype also has struts in the space between the split tail, which of
course Fenton's final hen on nest mould does not have.

Unfortunately, those interesting differences between Fenton's 5" hen on nest,
and what we refer to as the prototype, (although it may be the Butler Bros.
hen shown in their advertisement) were all but impossible to capture in
photos-although we haven't given up yet.
Split tail of the #5186 Fenton hen on nest. A split tail
appears like an inverted V when viewed from behind.
More detail can be seen in the view from #5186 CN,
Fenton's 5" hen on nest in Carnival. This photo of shows
the series of Xs that makeup the cross-hatched rin
design of the #5186 Hen top mould.
5" Hen on (arched) Nest #5186
  • Origin & History  
  • Date of Debut
  • Prototype
  • Measurements
  • Details
  • Face & Neck
  • Eggs & Placement
  • Tail
  • Base
  • Inline Colors produced
  • Painted Decorations & Themes
  • Embedded Logos
For more than a century the Fenton family business had promoted and prided itself on it's glass ware were  
made in the USA. True to form they continued producing glass in the USA, including their cheery #5186 hen on
nest, and her big sisters, the Hen Egg Plate #5188 and the 8" Hen on the scallop rimmed Nest #5182 until
closing, although for reasons related to saving the company, in 2008 some products were the result of using
overseas factories for production, which led to new logos made in 2008 to identify which items were not made
in the USA-and which were still being produced in the USA-which thankfully included their entire roster of
hens, roosters & other poultry.

These logos mark the #5186 hen on nest, and her big sisters, and clearly says just that-"Made in the USA."  
Determining which glass hen on nest dishes in this size range are Fenton, and which are not, isn't terribly
difficult.  Determining which Fenton glass colors are which from photos alone can be bit more complicated.
However, thanks to convenient clues left on the hen on nest dishes by Fenton and the availability of Fenton's
production records through books, Compendiums and actual Catalogs, collectors can determine specific colors
are which, using photos and with some information about the type of logo the ware is marked with.  

Fenton began marking wares made from moulds which originated with Fenton, including both their 8" and 5"
hen on nest dishes, (moulds #5182, and #5186, respectively), in 1971 with a logo which consisted of the
name "Fenton" spelled out in an Oval.  Some Fenton hen on nest dishes in both sizes made prior to 1971,
specifically those made of milk glass and fewer in Carnival, were not marked with Fenton' logo, or any other
permanent identifying mark.  Some collectors and vendors refer to Fenton wares made prior to their use of
embedded logos as "pre-logo." It should be noted the term "pre-logo" is used rather loosely on eBay and the
Internet.

All Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes, with the exception of those made in milk glass and carnival as described
above, should be marked with Fenton's embedded logo generally found centered in the star burst design of the
underside of the arched base.  Occasionally the interior of the 5" Fenton hen top is also marked. Please note,
the first 4 digits of Fenton's ware numbers, in this case #5186 MI,  represents the "mould" or shape and size of
the item, the 5" hen on nest, with the last two digits, or a combination of a letter and a number, used as the
color code. By 1972 Fenton had begun marking all wares with embedded logos, added to the moulds, so the
glass wares were permanently embedded with Fenton's logo.  Fenton's 5" Hen on Nest #5186 is marked in the
center of the underside of the base, and also at times on the inside of the hen top.  
 

Fenton claimed the moulds used to manufacture their well received, very detailed 5" hen top and her unique,
arched base/nest, as their own.  Despite this, other hen on nest dishes on arched bases not made by Fenton are
known to exist and often referred to as "Fenton Prototypes."  These are not marked and a major difference can
be seen in the hen top's mould design which lacks the intricate evenly done "grass trim" that travels around the
entire circumference of the Fenton 5" hen top.

The Fenton Gift Shop are also ordered some #5186 hen on nest dishes to be sold as a Gift Shop Exclusive, with
other #5186 hen on nest dishes shown below that were sold through the Gift Shop, although not as special
ordered GSE. Fenton's Gift Shop occasionally pairs hen tops with bases that were not originally used with each
other. Although technically a "marriage" of one color, HP design or glass type hen top on a base of a different
color, HP design, or glass type, when sold through the Fenton Gift Shop these gals appear to get a pass of sorts,
although if sold and pictured on eBay that way the hen on nest would be considered a "marriage" as described
above.

If an item was deemed a "second", or not of first quality, the hen top &/or base was marked by one of the
many methods used by Fenton to designate which of their wares failed to have passed Fenton's "strict" quality
control.  Removing the logo, and/or adding symbols such as the 2 Stars, Dancing Flame & Block F, shown
below, are a few marks used by Fenton to identify seconds.
Fenton's glass hen on nest drought began with the simultaneous "semi-retirement" of both hen on nest
moulds used with Fenton ware #5199, the 8" hen top used with the Fenton Chicken Server, ware
#5188 & the Fenton Hen on (smooth rim, Challinor style) Nest ware #5183, produced from 1952 until
late in 1957, or as some recall very early in 1958.*  

There was one rare Fenton Plum Slag #5183 Hen On the smooth Rim Nest which was produced for test
purposes in 1961, which is said to have led Fenton to seek a new base, while keeping their same 8" hen
top, mould #5199.

In 1967 Fenton unveiled their revised 8" hen on nest, in milk glass as ware #5182 MI. During that
same year, Fenton also introduced new hen on nest, ware #5186, which was to become an immensely
popular collectible. Fenton's 5" covered hen on nest, has a detailed hen top mould and has only been
used with a unique mould for the base, made with 10 arches on the base that form the sides, rising to
flare very slightly,  with a rim around the base which contains a beautiful starburst design. The new
little sister to Fenton's 8" Hen on Nest dishes also made her debut in Milk Glass, as Fenton ware # 5186
MI.






















Production of this 2 piece milk glass beauty, who's mould, (or exact size,  features & shape, Fenton
claimed as their own, continued well into 1972. By then, Fenton's 5" hen on nest mould was also being
manufactured in Carnival, ware #5186 CN, a hand painted, or "HP" as its often abbreviated, version on
Milk Glass, ware #5186 MD, and in a gorgeous slag mix of baby blue and white, called Blue Marble,
ware #5186 MB.  That was the start of a very long, successful run for Fenton's highly collectible, #
5186, 5" hen on nest.
Above: Ware # 5186 FK, the Natural Hen, a 5 " Fenton satin glass Hen on
Nest #5186 that has been hand painted in tones of rust, rose and hand
rubbed with gold gilding over Ivory Satin Glass blank, in the design of the
1998 Fenton Folk Art Animals Collection. Although this painted hen is
actually made of Ivory Glass, because of the high price commanded by
Burmese Glass it is not uncommon to see painted Fenton Hens and
Roosters listed for sale online as Burmese Glass. The interiors of both the
Hen Top and the Arched Nest are left unpainted and display as white
with no other colors in the glass.
Enjoying the Art of Online Collecting~
For Collectors, by Collectors.
The key to success in collecting Fenton Art Glass, or any specific brand
of glass, minimally begins with  knowing the features, size and shape of
the item(s.) As you become more familiar with collecting on eBay, and
depending on your own personal goals for your collection will help
determine how much effort is put into finding special pieces at prices
not considered too outrageous.
The original embedded logo used by Fenton was introduced during 1971, prior to Fenton's use of
Decade Indicators. The photos below show how this logo appeared on the base of ware #5186 MB,
the 5" hen on nest in Blue Marble, or Blue Slag as its also called, produced in 1971 & 1972.  
Decade Indicators were not used with logos in the 1970's, and were first introduced in 1980.
The "split tail" of the #5186 Fenton hen top rises from the
hen's back quite steeply & both edges are smoothly curved,
and without any "feathered" indentations that many other hens
by different makers in this size frequently have. The rear of
the tail is almost perpendicular to the surface the hen is on.

display issues in 1968, when Fenton introduced the highly collectible 5 inch Fenton Hen
on Nest in Milk Glass, ware # 5186 MI.  Collectors and one time buyers alike fell for the
lovely, well detailed hen top, that was paired over a unique, beautifully designed, elegant
arched dish nest.  The new design of this base was a hit with collectors, and to some
was welcome, innovative departure from the more common basket woven and ribbed
nests that many Fenton competitors, who were making hens on nests in this size range,
were using at the time.  This arched base has the added distinction of making the
#5186 Hen on Nest easy to identify as Fenton, since to this day that base design is
claimed by Fenton Art Glass alone.

The smaller size of the 5 inch hen on nest did prove herself as being easier to display,
causing many collectors to want more, in other colors.  That collectors found this new 5
inch hen on nest to be easy to display apparently was not unexpected by Fenton. In 1970
Fenton's Carnival 5 inch Hen on Nest, ware #5186 CN was introduced, sharing two
years of production with the Milk Glass Hen, which was retired in 1972, while the
Carnival 5186 continued on until 1973. This began the start of what was to become a
lengthy production run for the Fenton 5 inch hen on nest, and over the next 40 years
she's been made in a wide range of colors, treatments, and with decorative painting-a
skill the founding brothers Fenton had mastered in the years prior to producing their
own glass.  To date the #5186 Fenton 5 inch hen on nest has been produced in more
colors and decorative treatments than any other hen on nest made by Fenton-and she's
still selling strong, both new and on the secondary market.

As with all of Fenton's glass poultry, a little detective work, combined with some basic
knowledge, will help take much of the guess work out of determining just which of the 5
to 6 inch hens frequently seen on the secondary market are Fenton.
Closeups of the very detailed face
of the #5186 Fenton hen on nest.
Note the eyelids and details,
which the eyes of the larger
#5199 8" Fenton hens do not have.
Fenton's Embedded Logos & Decade Indicators

By the end of the year 2012, after 47 years of production, Fenton's 5" hen on nest mould #5186 had been made in more than
55 inline colors, treatments, glass types and/or painted designs, each with its own ware number.  To date, all Fenton hen on
nest dishes were made in the USA, some that at one point in Fenton's recent history would have been taken for granted, since
USA made glass was something the Fenton family prided themselves on-their Company echoed this same sentiment through its
heavy promotion of this fact.  However, in 2007 the Fenton Art Glass Company underwent radical restructuring, due to an
overwhelming debt which threatened to cool Fenton's furnaces immediately-and permanently. During Fenton's restructuring
many collectors were shocked to learn that the difficult decision had been made to outsource production of some Fenton
wares to overseas factories and plants.

The sustained popularity of Fenton's beautiful 5" hen on nest may in part have been due to the hen's smaller size, which made
it easier to display larger collections in smaller spaces. The issue of display space was not new to Fenton hen collectors. Prior
to the debut of Fenton's 5" hen,  the area required to display many of Fenton's 8" hen on nest dishes, or even a few of their
massive Chicken Servers and Hen Egg Plates, exceeded a practical home display size, with each of Fenton's Chicken Serves
requiring at least a foot or more of space.

The attention Fenton's 5" Hen on Nest #516 received from collectors did not go unnoticed by QVC, a company with ties to
Fenton going back to the early 1990s. QVC special ordered 5 of Fenton's 5" Hen on Nest mould #5186 Dishes for marketing via
QVC's TV Shows and online site.  Often, new Fenton for QVC Hen on Nest dishes debut  on QVC TV with an introduction from a
Fenton family member during the QVC show the Fenton hen on nest is offered for the first time.  As of late, especially with
smaller numbers being made, many of QVC's special ordered Fenton hen on nest dishes are sold out during the show she was
introduced on. In recent times Fenton hens and roosters have been reported as having sold out prior to the airing of the show!

By the spring of 2009, the Fenton 5" hen on nest offered through QVC was reported to have sold out prior to the actual airing
of the show, although in all fairness to Fenton it should be mentioned that "Waitlist Orders" were promptly filled.  Although we
have many more than the number of 58 inline # 5186 hens in our collection, all of which are marked with Fenton's embedded
logos, and most with Decade Indicators,  there are no Factory Records of some of these colors, or color combinations, as ever
having been produced by Fenton, marketed inline, or sold through the Gift Shop. Yet, these Fenton hens and some of Fenton's
#4680 Rooster Boxes are authentic Fenton, and marked as such, although their colors and YOPS can be somewhat difficult to
pin down since they were omitted from Fenton's records.

We have many more than the expected total number of inline and special ordered 5" Fenton hen on nest # 5186 dishes in our
collection-all of which are marked with Fenton's embedded logos, and most with Decade Indicators,  there are no Factory
Records of a few of these colors, or color combinations as ever having been produced by Fenton  inline, or for sales through the
Gift Shop.  Yet, these Fenton hen on nest dishes, and some of Fenton's #4680 Rooster Boxes are authentic Fenton, and marked
as such, although their colors and YOPS can be somewhat difficult to pin down since they appear to have been omitted from
Fenton's records, due to probably not being inline pieces.
Ware # 5186 a 5 " Fenton satin glass Hen on Nest #5186 that has been hand painted in tones of rust, rose and hand rubbed with gold gilding
over Ivory Satin Glass blank, in the design of the 1998 Fenton Folk Art Animals Collection. Although this painted hen is actually made of Ivory
Glass, because of the high price commanded by Burmese Glass it is not uncommon to see painted Fenton Hens and Roosters listed for sale
online as Burmese Glass. The interiors of both the Hen Top and the Arched Nest are left unpainted and display as white with no other colors
in the glass.
~~~
Burmese is a glass, not a surface treatment so the interiors of Fenton's Burmese Rooster Tops and their Bases appear as Burmese does-a custard
yellow with a contrasting pink to deep rose blush that appears randomly swirled throughout the glass.
NOTE: By Fenton's closing, only two covered poultry dishes had ever been produced in Burmese by Fenton, their large 8.5" Burmese Rooster
Box, made in 2006 as ware #4680 Q9, and handpainted in the Coral Bells themed collection, from 2 former Westmoreland moulds leased from
the late Gary Levi, and L. G. Wright's former small Turkey Box mould, also owned by Levi and leased by  Fenton, and produced in Burmese
with a hand painted for QVC.
The photos to the right show the logo
as it appears on the base of ware
#5186 MB, Fenton's 5" hen on nest,
in Blue Marble, or Blue Slag as its
also called, produced in 1971 &
1972 when there was no Decade
Indicator used with them.
 
FENTON'S EMBEDDED LOGOS
FENTON'S DECADE INDICATORS
A single feature found in photos of a glass
hen on nest does not automatically qualify
that hen as being Fenton's. However, in
some cases a single feature seen in a photo
of a hen on nest can disqualify that hen on
nest from being Fenton's-in record time!
The relatively extensive length of time for the run of Fenton's highly collectible, very popular, mould # 5186, the 5"
hen detailed hen top on a uniquely arched base began in 1968, less the year the Fenton Art Glass Company
introduced their revised 8" Hen on a new scalloped rim Nest.  

The 5" Fenton hen on nest debuted in Milk Glass in 1967, as ware # 5186 MI. By year's end 2012 after 45 years of
production, Fenton mould #5186 had been produced in well over 58 inline colors, treatments and/or painted
designs, and glass types! Fenton's #5186, 5" hen on nest was only produced here in the USA.   "Never used or opened"
Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes can still be found in their original boxes, although the date they may have been made
during may have been years ago, from among the inventory of Sellers operating out of brick and mortar and/or online
venues.  Also available in these many online secondary market venues are older, less common Fenton hen on nest
dishes which continue to be among one of the top collectibles in its category.

Production of Fenton's first, 2 piece 5" Milk Glass Hen on Nest in 1967 continued well into 1972. By then Fenton's
#5186, 5" hen on nest was also being manufactured in Carnival, ware #5186 CN, a hand painted, ("HP" is a commonly
used abbreviation for  items decorated with painted designs), version of the 5: hen on nest in Milk Glass, #5186 MD,
and in a gorgeous slag mix of a baby blue and white, called Blue Marble, or Blue Slag, #5186 MB. With the exception
of a half year's run of the 5" hen on nest in Carnival, almost all First Quality #5186 Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes
were embedded with Fenton's logo. (see below for examples)

Each Fenton item, or ware, has its own ware number which can be found on a scored sticker also containing Fenton's
MSRP. This sticker can be separated at the scored area to leave only the ware number showing. Ware numbers for
their 5" hen on nest dishes are based on mould #5186, used to manufacture Fenton's 5" hen on nest. These ware
numbers speak volumes about specific Fenton hen on nest dishes to those who know what to look for! Fenton ware
numbers assigned to completed 5" hen on nest dishes include mould #5186, based on the mould(s) used to produce
the completed, 2 part hen on nest, followed by a suffixed Color Code consisting of two letters, or a digit and a
letter, which identify the actual Fenton names assigned to each color, treatment &/or painted decorative design used
on their 5" hen on nest dishes.
EMBEDDED LOGOS:
The original embedded logo used by Fenton was introduced during 1971, prior to
Fenton's use of Decade Indicators. The photos to the right show the logo as it
appears on the base of ware #5186 MB, Fenton's 5" hen on nest, in Blue Marble, or
Blue Slag as its also called, produced in 1971 & 1972 when there was no Decade
Indicator used with them. Decade Indicators are what we call the tiny numbers that
are molded with the embedded logo in Fenton wares made after 1979, and can be
very helpful to collectors of all sorts of Fenton wares
In 2007, Fenton underwent a massive restructuring of the
company-and with that came some new Fenton logos, which each
represent something different.
Fenton hen on nest and rooster enthusiasts were thrilled to find
these highly collectible items continue to be made in the USA, and
marked with a special embedded logo, reserved for wares Fenton
elected to continue to produce in the USA! The new logos used with
these items say just that, as clearly shown in the Chameleon Green
logo used for Fenton's Hen Egg Plate done in Chameleon Glass, in
2009.
Occasionally, Fenton's wares, including their hen on nest dishes, special ordered by QVC,
Rosso, and other companies planning to sell Fenton wares on their own have the letter
"C" or another letter, as a prefix to indicate this item was a special order and not
produced for sale by Fenton and its Dealers. Often these items are marked with a small
"Fancy script F in a Circle" logo marking the interior of the hen top. This can be
embedded, or in some cases permanently added in green.







Some colors, treatments, and even painted decorations used for Fenton's #5186 hen on
nest appear to be very similar, or even the same. Yet, each Fenton color is different from
the others. In some instances the differences between these colors can be very subtle
and quite difficult to correctly identify from Internet photos. Subtle changes in colors can
be attributed to the addition of opalescence, or iridescence to a previously used color of
glass. These subtle colors/treatments can be especially difficult to detect from photos
alone, yet are has a different name assigned by Fenton.

As more Fenton's colors were introduced they actually became less difficult to determine,
thanks to Fenton's use of what we call a Decade Indicator.
In 1980, to the delight of collectors, Fenton began embedding a (very) tiny number,
which we refer to as a Decade Indicator, with their logos. These tiny numbers have
proven to be a valuable aid to collectors seeking to determine which colors are which.

Using Fenton's embedded Decade Indicator can help determine which colors are which,
based on the decade during which the Fenton hen or rooster was made since most similar
colors were made years apart. Being able to recognize or determine colors can help
collectors avoid duplicate hen on nest purchases, even when the colors/treatments of the
hens and roosters seem almost identical.

At one point it would have been taken for granted that all Fenton was made in the USA,
however with Fenton's recent restructuring in 2007, that may not have remained the
case, since other wares began to be made overseas.
By year's end 2009, all Fenton hen
on nest dishes are still made in the USA-and marked as such. (see green logo in the next
section)
    Fenton was known for their strict quality control. Items that did not pass
    Fenton's quality control were permanently  marked by Fenton to identify
    those items not considered First Quality, but instead are "seconds." Some
    of the more common methods used for identifying these wares that are not
    First Quality are shown below.

    BUYERS BEWARE!!  Interestingly, some eBay Sellers believe the addition
    of a star to a Fenton ware indicate its "star quality" when that is far from
    the truth!
Above are some of the permanent marks used by Fenton to identify wares which Left to
right-"Dancing Flame," "Stars," or Single Star," and the "Block F." Fenton also removes
all LE Numbers from wares not of First Quality, even if intended for a Limited Editions.
All Fenton 5" hen on nest dishes, with the exception of those made in milk glass and carnival as
described above, should be marked with Fenton's embedded logo generally found centered in the
star burst design of the underside of the arched base.  Occasionally the interior of the 5" Fenton
hen top is also marked. Please note, the first 4 digits of Fenton's ware numbers, in this case
#5186 MI,  represents the "mould" or shape and size of the item, the 5" hen on nest, with the last
two digits, or a combination of a letter and a number, used as the color code. By 1972 Fenton had
begun marking all wares with embedded logos, added to the moulds, so the glass wares were
permanently embedded with Fenton's logo.  Fenton's 5" Hen on Nest #5186 is marked in the
center of the underside of the base, and also at times on the inside of the hen top.  
 

Fenton claimed the moulds used to manufacture their well received, very detailed 5" hen top and
her unique, arched base/nest, as their own.  Despite this, other hen on nest dishes on arched
bases not made by Fenton are known to exist and often referred to as "Fenton Prototypes."  
These are not marked and a major difference can be seen in the hen top's mould design which
lacks the intricate evenly done "grass trim" that travels around the entire circumference of the
Fenton 5" hen top.

The Fenton Gift Shop are also ordered some #5186 hen on nest dishes to be sold as a Gift Shop
Exclusive, with other #5186 hen on nest dishes shown below that were sold through the Gift
Shop, although not as special ordered GSE. Fenton's Gift Shop occasionally pairs hen tops with
bases that were not originally used with each other. Although technically a "marriage" of one
color, HP design or glass type hen top on a base of a different color, HP design, or glass type,
when sold through the Fenton Gift Shop these gals appear to get a pass of sorts, although if sold
and pictured on eBay that way the hen on nest would be considered a "marriage" as described
above.

If an item was deemed a "second", or not of first quality, the hen top &/or base was marked by
one of the many methods used by Fenton to designate which of their wares failed to have passed
Fenton's "strict" quality control.  Removing the logo, and/or adding symbols such as the 2 Stars,
Dancing Flame & Block F, shown below, are a few marks used by Fenton to identify seconds.

Fenton's massive restructuring of the
company in 2007-brought the need for  
some new logos which identified the wares
still made in the USA-and marked just that
way. Fenton hen on nest and rooster
enthusiasts were thrilled to find these
highly collectible items marked with a
special embedded logo, reserved for items
Fenton that continued to be produced in the
USA! The new logos used with these items
say just that, as clearly shown in the
Chameleon Green logo used for Fenton's
Hen Egg Plate done in Chameleon Glass, in
2009. The logos for the #5186 Hen on
Nest remained essentially the same-with
the addition of Bolded Block Letters USA.  
Shown below, and admittedly difficult to
seee are those logos.
As with Fenton's 8" hen on nest forms, although Fenton's 8" Hen top, ware #5199 was made as
a copy of the 8" Atterbury hen top, used with Challinor and Vallerysthal style bases,
respectively, as with the moulds used for the production of Fenton's 5" hen on nest, all Fenton's
hen on nest dishes are claimed by Fenton as having originated with their company.
Fenton's public claim about the origins of their 5" hen on nest is despite some controversy from
experts that infers this may not be the case.

There is some evidence that a very similar hen top on an arched base was advertised by the
Butler Bros, as early as the very early 1900s, 67 years before Fenton put their 5" hen into
production.  Although there are some hen on nest dishes that appear identical to Fenton's, on
close inspection of these hen on nest dishes, which have been seen in clear and "electric" blue,
reveals a different trim around the rim of the hen top of what we now call the prototype.

SIZE:
5186 " · Base 5-3/8"x 4-1/8· To 4-5/8"x 3-1/16"

Fenton's hen top is accented with perfectly cross hatched "grass" which continues around the
circumference of the hen top. The so-called prototypes do not have the criss-crossed "grass"
along the hen top's rim, but instead that space has sporadically placed diagonal lines all facing
in the same direction. Our clear prototype also has struts that are in the space between the split
tail. Unfortunately, those interesting differences between Fenton's 5" hen on nest, and what we
refer to as the prototype, (although it may be the Butler Bros. hen shown in their
advertisement) were all but impossible to capture in photos-although we haven't given up yet.

The 5 inch hen sits on a beautiful, uniquely styled base, featuring Fenton’s 10 distinctive arches, outlined with triple rows, to form
ware #5186. These arches rise to form broad petals along the upper rim of the base. The Fenton logo is embedded on the underside of
the base, as shown.  

Fenton lays claim to origin of their ware #5186 5 inch hen on nest, and the embedded logo Fenton reserved for use with moulds that
originated with them is the embedded Fenton logo reserved for use with moulds that originated with them, typically fully spelling the
name out as shown here.
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