Festival Lectures

The 14th Annual North American Sea Glass Festival will be held on Saturday, September 28, 2019 and Sunday, September 29, 2019 at The Wildwoods Convention Center in Wildwood, New Jersey.  The theme of the festival is “Gems of the Sea.”

The North American Sea Glass Festival is the premier sea glass event in the country celebrating the history and beauty of sea glass.    The event will be held on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Admission is $7.00 per day, Children Under 12 Free.  There will be a two-day ticket available for purchase on Saturday for a reduced rate of $10.

The North American Sea Glass Festival will feature expert lecture presentations on the history and collection of genuine sea glass.  Each lecture will be approximately 45 minutes.  There will be a Q & A session after the lectures.   The lectures will be located in adjacent rooms near the main hall of the festival.

On Saturday September 28, Cape May diamond expert Jeanette Bartolomeo, of Sunset Beach Gift Shops will present “Cape May Diamonds,” on the local beach gemstones that can be polished into gemstone quality jewelry.

Also Saturday, September 28 the festival is pleased to announce keynote speaker Jason Sandy who will present “Mudlarking: Historic Glass and Gems.” Jason Sandy of London is a Member of the Society of Thames Mudlarks and a Trustee of the Thames Museum Trust, a charity planning a new museum dedicated to the historically-important archaeology of the River Thames. In addition to giving talks about mudlarking, Jason also writes feature articles for magazines including Beachcombing Magazine, Treasure Hunting magazine and The Searcher magazine.

On Sunday, September 29 Jason Sandy will present another lecture, “Mudlarking: A Journey Through Time.”

On Sunday, September 29 “Sea Glass Gemstones” will be presented by Mary McCarthy, Education Chair of the North American Sea Glass Association.  Mary McCarthy is a bestselling author and beachcomber on the Chesapeake Bay. She recently released a children’s book I Sea: A Beachcombing Treasure Hunt with Kirsti Scott, publisher of Beachcombing magazine. Mary serves on the Board of Directors of the North American Sea Glass Association where she is also Education Chair, and is Executive Director of The Sea Glass Center educational nonprofit organization.

Lectures: Saturday, September 28, 2019

11:30 a.m.

Cape May Diamonds

Jeanette Bartolomeo – Jewelry Manager, Sunset Beach Gift Shops, Cape May

Jeannette BartolomeoCape May diamond expert Jeanette Bartolomeo, of Sunset Beach Gift Shops will present “Cape May Diamonds,” on the local beach gemstones that can be polished into gemstone quality jewelry. Jeanette Fox Bartolomeo has worked for well over 30 years as the Jewelry Manager and stone setter.

Quartz stones, known as “Cape May Diamonds”, can be found in abundance on Sunset Beach in historic Cape May Point. Cape May Diamonds have been washing ashore for generations, having first been discovered by the Kechemeche Indians who believed the gems possessed supernatural powers, influencing the success, well-being and good fortune of the possessor.Jeanette’s whole life has been spent by the shore where her passion for the natural beauty of our beach comes alive in every Cape May Diamond piece she creates.

2:00 p.m.

Mudlarking: Historic Glass and Gems –

Over the centuries, the soft mud of the River Thames has perfectly preserved old glass bottles which reveal fascinating backstories about London’s history. Shrouded in mystery, large clusters of red garnets are found in many locations along the river. Diamonds, amethysts, and other gemstones have also been discovered by Mudlarks in the Thames. Colorful glass stones set in Georgian and Victorian cuff links, finger rings, and seal matrices have been found along the riverbank in London.  Mudlark Jason Sandy will present samples of these extraordinary glass bottles, red garnets, beautiful gemstones, intaglios, and colorful stones during his talk.

Jason Sandy, Member Society of Thames Mudlarks

Jason SandyJason Sandy moved to Europe in 2000 after obtaining a Master of Architecture degree from Columbia University in New York City.  After living and working in Berlin for 7 years, he relocated to London in 2007.  Currently, Jason is an architect working for a development company converting the former United States embassy in London into an ultra-luxury hotel.  In complete contrast to his day job, Jason (aka @jasonmudlark) loves getting muddy while mudlarking (beachcombing) along the Thames riverbed which is exposed at low tide, revealing ancient artefacts lost by Londoners over two millennia. Jason is a member of the exclusive Society of Thames Mudlarks, and is a Trustee of the Thames Museum Trust, a charity planning a new museum dedicated to the historically-important archaeology of the River Thames. In addition to giving talks about mudlarking, Jason also writes feature articles for magazines including Beachcombing Magazine, Treasure Hunting magazine and The Searcher magazine.

Lectures: Sunday, September 29, 2019

11:30 a.m.

Sea Glass Gemstones-

North American Sea Glass Education Chair Mary McCarthy will present “Sea Glass Gemstones” on the history, identification and sources of vintage cut glass gemstones found on the beach. Pieces of jewelry, lamp beads, amusement pier prizes and other origins will be explored as we take a look at ways to determine the age of sea glass gemstone finds as well as how and where to search for them.

Mary McCarthy, NASGA Education Chair

Mary McCarthyMary McCarthy is a bestselling author, reiki master and beachcomber on the Chesapeake Bay. This year she recently released a new children’s book I Sea: A Beachcombing Treasure Hunt with Kirsti Scott. Her 25-year journalism career includes writing and editing experience at many regional newspapers, magazines and websites. She wrote three novels, one of which went to #1 on the Amazon bestseller list in its genre.  She serves on the Board of Directors of the North American Sea Glass Association where she is also Education Chair, and is Executive Director of The Sea Glass Center educational nonprofit organization. Mary is a mother of four on Maryland’s Eastern Shore where she enjoys kayaking and beachcombing. See her beach finds on Instagram.com/marytmccarthy

2:00 p.m.

Mudlarking: A Journey Through Time-

Founded in 43 AD by the Romans, London has been a bustling center of trade for nearly 2,000 years. Flowing through the heart of the London, the River Thames which was once the largest port in the world. When the tide recedes, the longest archaeological site in Britain is revealed, and evidence of London’s illustrious history is revealed. Mudlarks who beachcomb along the exposed riverbed have made some incredible discoveries. Each object recovered from the mud reveals a unique story about the people who lived and worked along the Thames. Mudlark Jason Sandy will present some extraordinary Thames finds and their intriguing backstories during his talk.

Jason Sandy, Member Society of Thames Mudlarks

Jason SandyJason Sandy moved to Europe in 2000 after obtaining a Master of Architecture degree from Columbia University in New York City.  After living and working in Berlin for 7 years, he relocated to London in 2007.  Currently, Jason is an architect working for a development company converting the former United States embassy in London into an ultra-luxury hotel.  In complete contrast to his day job, Jason (aka @jasonmudlark) loves getting muddy while mudlarking (beachcombing) along the Thames riverbed which is exposed at low tide, revealing ancient artefacts lost by Londoners over two millennia. Jason is a member of the exclusive Society of Thames Mudlarks, and is a Trustee of the Thames Museum Trust, a charity planning a new museum dedicated to the historically-important archaeology of the River Thames. In addition to giving talks about mudlarking, Jason also writes feature articles for magazines including Beachcombing Magazine, Treasure Hunting magazine and The Searcher magazine.