OSAGE | The latest exhibit at the Mitchell County Historical Museum features Depression glass and special pieces of treasured glassware.

Titled "Christmas Dishes, the exhibit includes pieces from the museum's collection as well as from the collection of Mitchell County residents.

From the late 20s to early 40s, manufacturers produced what is now known as Depression Glass.

The mass-produced, molded glassware was considered to be of rather poor quality, often exhibiting air bubbles, heavy mold marks and other flows in the glass.

However, it came in beautiful colors and patterns to suit every taste, bringing a little cheer into some very dreary days.

Even the pattern names alluded to better times and a longing for the glamorous lifestyles of the 20s.

Depress glass was popular and affordable when it was new. The dime store was a common source for this inexpensive purchase.

At a time when a loaf of bread would set you back a nickel, frugal shoppers could also buy a piece of Depression glass for around the same price.

Sellers or manufacturers would offer a free gift with the purchase of a certain dollar amount of goods or a specific product. Penny-pinching ladies took full advantage of these freebies.

Glass was plucked from an oatmeal box one week, then from a detergent box the next. Sometimes gas stations would throw in a punch bowl and matching set of cups with an oil change. Movie theaters got into the action, offering a piece of glass with a ticket to a matinee.

The Mitchell County Historical Museum is located inside the Cedar River Complex, 809 Sawyer Drive. It is open from 1-5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.