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Jan. 23: Pyrex’s founder was born on this day in 1872

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Though the Pyrex brand has always been popular in American kitchens, the vintage products are making a big com …

Dust off your old Pyrex cookware, because it can be worth a pretty penny.

Vintage Pyrex has found a niche among chefs and homemakers, who love the colors and patterns of the old sets. Founder of Corning Glass Works' research lab and developer of Pyrex brand cookware Eugene C. Sullivan, born on Jan. 23, 1872, would probably be pretty pleased with the brand’s longevity.

Pyrex was introduced in 1915. It was the American version of a German brand called Duran that also used borosilicate glass, a stronger and more durable glass that is more resistant to heat. It quickly gained popularity in the American kitchen, and Corning eventually brought a number of different designers on board to create different sets over the years.

Flickr user AquaOwl, displays old containers and cookware in her kitchen for different holidays and seasons.

While Pyrex is still a top sellers in the kitchenware marketplace, its vintage Pyrex that has recently exploded in popularity. There are vintage Pyrex items selling for upwards of $400 on eBay. There's even a website, Pyrexlove.com, that helps identify and differentiate the various vintage Pyrex patterns and colors.

Pyrex junkies say the reason for the fanfare is the stylistically appealing colors, durability and antique appeal. Flickr user AquaOwl, for example, hunts down the old containers and cookware and sets up beautiful displays in her kitchen for different holidays and seasons.

After all, some of these dishes date back more than 50 years and are still completely functional in the kitchen. Some Pyrex lovers say they don’t even like the new models, because they’re made using tempered glass and not the borosilicate glass, making them less durable.

So if you’ve got an old Pyrex dish laying around, check out its value. It may be worth more than you think.

Ilyce Glink is an award-winning, nationally syndicated real estate columnist, blogger and radio talk show host, and managing editor of the Equifax Finance Blog. Follow her on Twitter @Glink.

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