Wellston Bottling Works/Town Crier Bottling Co./St. Louis, Mo
Wellston Bottling Works (Frank Guyton) Town Crier Bottling Company St. Louis, Missouri
The first I find a Frank Guyton in St. Louis directories is in 1911 and he is listed simply as soda water and is doing business at 5749 Theodosia. 1919 and the name Wellston Bottling Works is listed. In the business section of the directories under soda water over the next few years the operation is either listed as simply Frank Guyton or Wellston Bottling Works and on occasion both names come up. Around 1936 or so the bottling works will move to 7314 Natural Bridge Road. I have two early Wellston Bottling Works (Frank Guyton) bottles in my collection. A small six-ounce version and a quart size, both dated 1927.
1926 and Frank is advertising Liquid Candy. Here is an ad and a quart size bottle.
This 1930 ad out of a publication called The Politician advertises for Liquid Candy, Pure soda waters and Smile. Smile bottled as a franchise from the Orange Smile Co. of St. Louis must have been quite popular in St. Louis as this is about the fourth or fifth bottling company that has advertised for Smile. Wellston is actually a township in the northwestern portion of the city. Wellston Bottling Works also shared the area in bottling the Orange Crush line of flavors.
Its now the early to mid-1930’s and Wellston is advertising for Town Crier and Lime Rickey.
I have two 7-ounce bottles with the same mold with different names. The Town Crier is dated 1938 and the Liquid Candy I could not decipher a date, probably mid 1930’s.
I was able to just recently acquire some store signs advertising for Town Crier. The first one is a cardboard sign measuring 11 ½ x9 ¾ inches. A little water damage but I just love it!
Here are my two Town Criers that have the slogan “Tops” in Taste and Purity. The first one is a 7-ounce size dated 1946 and a quart dated 1949.
The 1949-quart bottle mentions Wellston Bottling Works whereas the 1946 version mentions being bottled by Town Crier Bottling Co. So,we have a transition period going on from company name, a new logo and change of ownership. I found a copy of a Registration of Fictitious Name for a David J. Massa as sole owner of the Town Crier Bottling Co., doing business at 7314 Natural Bridge Road. This document is dated January 11, 1946. So, it looks to me like new ownership and a change of name occurred in 1946. Here is the other sign, a 14 x 11-inch cardboard sign with the new logo, Pennant Winner Among Sodas and featuring a new cartoonish town crier.
This bottle is a 10-ounce 1950 version featuring the new character and logo. I have seen a few other versions of painted label Town Criers, but unfortunately have not been able to acquire any for my collection.
Ok, 1952 and Town Crier is still bottling Orange Crush.
Sadly, in March of 1953 the Town Crier Bottling Co. Inc. files for bankruptcy.