Glass Hero: Catherine Mack | The Glass Age | Corning

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Glass Hero: Catherine Mack

A 33-year veteran of Corning, Catherine Mack started working for the company while still in high school

While a lot of the magic may happen in our labs, here at Corning, we consider the library to be just as magical an environment. Full of history and mystery, our collections encompass centuries of materials on the art, history, and science of glassmaking. And without the guidance and leadership of Catherine Mack, the collection may not have become as extensive as it currently is.

Mack, a 33-year veteran of Corning, started working for the company while still in high school as a finisher in the PYREX® department. Mack also worked in the lab under many leaders in the glass science research field such as Dr. Eugene Sullivan, Dr. William C. Taylor, and Dr. J.T. Littleton.

By 1932, Mack was hired as the librarian for the Corning Glass Works Technical Library, now known as the Rakow Research Library, which is the world’s most comprehensive collection of materials on the art and history of glass and glassmaking. Her work in the technical library led to the eventual appointment as the first librarian at the Corning Museum of Glass in 1951, establishing and organizing the museum’s collection. In that role, Mack expanded the museum’s collection to 17,000 items in the first year, making it the largest glass and glassmaking collection in the world as of May 1952. Mack served as the librarian for the Corning Museum of Glass from 1951 to 1953, becoming a consultant in 1954 and returning to her role as a librarian for Corning Glass Works – better known now as Corning Incorporated.