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View Full Version : How old are pontil medicines?



jays emporium
07-20-2009, 06:05 PM
I picked up a few common pontiled medicine bottles at the Shupps Grove show because we seldom see them here in Texas. I got Mrs. Winslow's, Barrys Tricopherous, Dr Porter, Lyons Katheron, Mexican Mustang Liniment, Dr Tobias and a few others for about $20. each. One dealer told me they date from 1845-1855. Is there some standard date, like 1860, when they generally switched from pontil to smooth base?
By the way, when I proudly showed these bottles to my wife she didn't like them. She says the bottles that have been professionally cleaned until they sparkle look new, like some Mexican glass made in the 1970's. The ones that have a little haze at least look like they might be 150 years old. I was disappointed with her response but she looks at glass from a different perspective. Her family collects art glass from Ohio and WV like Heisey, Cambridge, Morgantown, Fenton. From that upbringing I guess antique bottle glass does look kind of cheap.

GuntherHess
07-20-2009, 06:12 PM
There is no "standard date". It is based on product, glasshouse , and other factors.
When you say "pontil", there are various types of pontil marks and thier periods of use varied. Your bottles are likely open pontil marked. The transition from these to smooth base bottles happened around 1860 but that is just a general reference point.

athometoo
07-20-2009, 07:12 PM
HEY GLAD TO SEE YA MADE IT BACK . IVE GOT A FEW FENTONS MYSELF , BUT THOSE ARE FOR LOOKING AT , GIVE YOUR WIFE A REALLY WHITTLED BOTTLE WITH LOTS FLAWS , SOME ARE MEANT TO LOOK AT AND SOME ARE MEANT TO TOUCH , THERES THE DIFFERENCE , I WOULD TRADE MY FENTONS FOR SOME GOOD BOTTLES ANYDAY . WIFE MIGHT NOT BUT I WOULD . JMO SAM ( THE GENIE DONT COME OUT OF THE BOTTLE BY LOOKING AT IT )

jays emporium
07-20-2009, 09:28 PM
Thank you Gunther. Yes, I did mean open pontil, I should have specified that. Generally, pre-1860 is what I was thinking.
I got 10 open pontil medicine bottles and I just unpacked them and sorted them out. 5 to keep, 4 to sell and one to give to a digging buddy who took me turkey hunting last season and he told me he doesn't think he has ever seen a pontiled bottle. If he really likes it maybe he will let me deer hunt next season. I'm going to give him a really nice whittled Barry's Tricopherous.

appliedlips
07-21-2009, 08:25 AM
ORIGINAL: jays emporium

* Her family collects art glass from Ohio and WV like Heisey, Cambridge, Morgantown, Fenton.* From that upbringing I guess antique bottle glass does look kind of cheap.




Thats funny, we do alot of digging in the home of Heisey and close to Cambridge and get asked if we find any of it, quite frequently.. Normally I respond with " We try not too, we don't like to get into that new stuff".[:D] I guess its all perspective.

I'd agree with 1860, pretty much being the cutoff on pontils, especially when it comes to meds. There are pontils after that but would not consider them the norm and are normally on odd shaped,less than common utilitarian bottles.

GuntherHess
07-21-2009, 08:45 AM
Keep in mind there are plenty of non-pontil marked medicines that are before 1860. So you cant assume because it isnt pontilled that it is later.