The recently remodeled historic Johnston Glass Building at 1000 West Washington Street in Hartford City is now the home of the Deja Brew Espresso Bar. The Johnston Glass Company was one of the largest glass companies during the gas boom. The company was the largest producer of ornamental glass for kitchen cabinets and other furniture construction.

Johnston Glass Company was founded in 1900 by John Rodgers Johnston (1867–1920) one of Hartford City’s leading glassmakers and financiers. Johnson was an officer and plant manager of Hartford City Glass, before the founding of Johnston Glass Company in Hartford City. He was also the founder of the Johnston Brokerage in Pittsburgh. He was also involved with companies as diverse as the Berghoff Brewing Company, Newsome Feed and Grain Company, and Potomac Valley Orchard Company. In 1903, the company employed 200. The company remained in business until 1966. Sinclair Glass Company, which still exists as a division of Middletown Enterprises, began production in the former Johnston and Sneath glass plants in 1966. Sinclair Glass made the bent glass windows Jackson used on some of the windows when renovating the historic building.

Hartford City’s newest coffee shop is owned by Gordon Jackson. Jackson got a taste for the business when he started helping out at Common Grounds last year during early days of the Covid pandemic. Jackson is aware of the other shops in town. Not wanting to cut in on their business, Deja Brew is open at hours the other shops aren’t. The shop is open Mondays through Fridays from 3:00 PM until 8:00 PM and from Noon until 5:00 PM on Saturdays. Deja Brew is also open on Sundays from 8:00 AM until 5:00 PM. Visit their website at:

Jackson has worked with the Caffeinery in Muncie to develop a custom blend for the shop, roasted to Jackson’s specifications and ground fresh daily. This special blend has received a cupping score of 87, which is excellent. A coffee is scored from 6 to ten points in ten different categories. A score of 80 is considered to be very good. Deja Brew also offers cappuccinos, lattes, a variety of cold and hot teas, and assorted pastries.

Deja Brew is a coffee shop, not a restaurant. That being said, Jackson does offer a limited menu of food items, there is a daily special, and he serves biscuits and gravy on weekends. A family business, Jackson also has plans to open a vineyard at the site that will be named after his daughter Victoria. Jackson is also available to cater brunches and lunches for small groups. Deja Brew is also available as a venue for meetings as well, Jackson has already been in contact with several local groups about holding meetings at Deja Brew.

So, if you’re looking for a quality cup of coffee and maybe a muffin to go with it, stop by Deja Brew and give them a try. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for specials, events, and any new developments with Deja Brew Espresso Bar.

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