Lake Erie Beaches – Beach Glass

Beach glass has become a prime commodity as opposed to the ouchy nuisance it use to be. Collectors comb beaches at the ocean and lakes. The oceans produce Sea Glass as opposed to Beach Glass that can be found on lake shores.

The sources of the glass are anything made of glass that has been broken and found its way to the sea. It takes anywhere from 20 to 50 years for Sea Glass to acquire shape, color and a frosted effect from being rolled and tumbled in the oceans and worn down to a much sought after appearance. We find Sea Glass on the Oregon Coast near Umpqua River Haven often but it does take some serious looking as the pieces are generally small and easy to overlook.

But today we want to visit about Beach Glass found on the shores of Lake Erie. At one time anything that wasn’t wanted was tossed into the lake or the rivers feeding the lake. Major pollution plagued Lake Erie and others of the Great Lakes. Finally in the 70s the burning Cuyahoga River and “dead” Lake Erie prompted the federal government to pass the Clean Air Act that started to reverse the severe lake pollution.

Because Beach Glass is formed in fresh water instead of salt water, it has a different PH from Sea Glass and a somewhat less frosted appearance. Like Sea Glass, the edges are all rounded off from being tossed and tumbled by the lake waves over many years time.

There are many colors of Sea and Beach glass but the most common are white, green and brown. In our jewelry piece here there is a small blue piece of Beach Glass affixed to the larger, white piece.


This necklace is a gift for one of our friends at Umpqua River Haven and will be unique in the Oregon Coast area in that it didn’t come from the ocean. The jewelry maker’s hubby said that Beach Glass isn’t as plentiful as it once was on the shores of Lake Erie and he does a lot of walking to continue finding pieces for his wife to make jewelry with. She makes some very pretty things anyone would enjoy wearing and it’s all unique and original. No two pieces are alike. We think it’s a real find!



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