Columbia Mineral Water Co. / St. Louis, Missouri

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Jan 21, 2018
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St. Louis, Missouri
Columbia Mineral Water Co.
St. Louis, Missouri

1920 Congress (1895-1908)
1921 – 1923 Lynch (1895-1908)
2033 Cushing (1909-1910)
1809 Arsenal (1911-1926)
2001-2005 South 9[SUP]th[/SUP] Street (1927-1933)
2114 South 7[SUP]th[/SUP] Street (1934-1936)

Columbia Mineral Water Co. was started in 1895 by a John D. Bollinn. A very large ad was placed in the local directory for about 3 or 4 consecutive years. This one being 1898. I enjoy looking at online maps to look for old bottling companies or at least to see where they were located. Congress and Lynch streets run parallel to each other, and the street numbers given are in the same block. So,you could walk out of the back door of one building into the back door of another. The building I saw looked to me to be a bit newer than the time frame of 1895-1908. So, I am sure some sort of demolition and rebuild took place in the 100-plus year span.

ad 1898.jpg

I have two early bimal bottles to share that would probably date to the early 1900’s. Both aqua colored, a six-ounce and a quart size.

P1020955.jpg P1020956.jpg

It seems every time Columbia moves another owner / president takes over the company. I have a long list of presidents, vice presidents etc., too numerous to mention at this time.
Here are some more bottles from my collection. The second six-ounce size has a 1919 date and the aqua quart has a 1921 date. No dates ormakers on the others.

P1020957.jpg P1020958.jpg

1927 and Columbia is now at 2001-2005 S. Ninth Street, this also happens to be the new home of The Orange Smile Sirup Co. I am not positive but perhaps Columbia was bottling Orange Smile products or maybe they were just sharing the building. Orange Smile moved from 515 Elm St. to 2001 S. Ninth St. in 1928. This relationship would not last long as in 1934 Columbia moves once again.
While on 9[SUP]th[/SUP] Street, Columbia was either distributing or bottling Kentucky Carlsbad Mineral Water. Here is a 1931 ad.

1931 ad.jpg

A lot of Columbia bottles have Shamrock embossed across the shoulder. I have an acl Shamrock that states “Since 1909” on the label. But it was bottled by Shamrock Bottling Company in 1943, six years after Columbia closed. I believe Shamrock was a product of Bob’s Cola Co. of Atlanta, Ga. Here is a 1939 trade ad that list their flavors. This pic came out rather small, Shamrock is the last flavor listed on the right.

trade ad.jpg

Here is a 1933 Shamrock ad that sadly does not mention a bottler. Here are my Columbia / Shamrock bottles. No dates on any of the bottles except the two art deco quarts, 1929 and 1931. At one time all of the embossed lines were painted red, probably someone’s art project or something. I got most of the paint off, but I think I can find an upgrade.

Shamrock 1933.jpg

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1937 and Columbia Mineral Water Company is bankrupt.


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