Marie asked me what the best Fostoria book is. The answer: It Depends.
My go-to books for Fostoria are the volumes by Long and Seate, but sometimes they are a little hard to use or leave me with many questions. My other favorite is a 1970s volume by Hazel Marie Weatherman.
This is the most complete and best to use for Fostoria stemware. The book is organized by stem line, the blank, in numerical order. The authors show most (usually all) the different stem shapes in that line and include line drawings of the etches or cuttings used with each. They also give the years of production and colors.
My main quibble with this book is that it can be hard to find a given stem. There is a index by name in the back, so if you know you have the Navarre etch you can look up the stem lines it came on.
Also, Long and Seate restricted this volume solely to stems and put the dinnerware and accessory pieces in different volumes. One point to note with this reference and all the others I mention is that you cannot rely on the prices or value guides. They are out of date. You can use them as general guideline as far as which colors or patterns tend to be more valuable than others, but don’t read that a given stem is $30 and expect to either pay that or sell yours for that amount.
You can read a more in-depth review here: Fostoria Stemware Glass Reference Pattern Guide Book Review
This the volume I referenced the most when researching Fostoria Fairfax. I like the interesting write ups and catalog page reproductions the authors include and it is usually fairly easy to identify a pattern and also find out what else was made in a line. For example, I relied on this book to spot that the scroll candle holders with June etch are not Fairfax but a separate line.
However, they do not include all the Fostoria lines. The book did not cover the scroll line for example, and some patterns get cursory overviews only. When researching glass it gets tedious having to flip between the stemware and the dinnerware guides but that’s a minor complaint.
My more in-depth review is here: Fostoria Tableware 1924-1943 Glass Collector’s Guide Long and Seate
This is the companion book to the 1924-1943 tableware guide, covering later patterns in about the same way. Do be aware that lines that are strictly gift ware or that Colony Glass produced under the Fostoria label after they purchased the Fostoria name may be missing or incomplete.
I have a hard time with some of the glass from the tail end of Fostoria’s life span as several patterns look alike without careful evaluation. The pictures of these patterns are small and I found them hard to use.
Both the tableware guides are good, but can be frustrating to use for the type of research I do for these articles. I found them pretty good for pattern identification though, provided the pattern was major enough to get a thorough listing.
You can read a more in depth review here: Fostoria Tableware 1944-1986 Long & Seate Glass Book Review
This is hands down the best book to identify Fostoria patterns, as long as they were produced up to about 1970. The book has catalog reprints and a few photos of all Fostoria patterns and includes the colors and often the complete piece listing.
There is no price guide although Mrs. Weatherman published pricing guides in the 1970s and early 80s.
I cannot recommend the two books by Ann Kerr for general use. They do have clear line drawings of most etches and piece lists, but the books themselves have little other information.
There are at least a dozen other books on Fostoria, ranging from detailed views of single patterns to more comprehensive listings, but I have not used them and have no thoughts to share.