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First use of "hobble skirt" to describe Coca-Cola bottles?

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
0
!!! NEWS FLASH !!!

The Coca Cola Bottling Company in Wichita, Kansas might have been the first ones to use the term "Hobble Skirt Bottle" in connection with the Patent 1915 contour bottle, but they were not the first soft drink to use the term. That distinction goes to "Bludwine"

And not only did Bludwine use it first, but they used it a full two years before the Patent 1915 Coca Cola bottle was even conceived - and a full four years before the Patent 1915 Coca Cola bottle became available to the general public - and a full six years before the Coca Cola Company of Wichita, Kansas ever used it! In other words, it appears the Coca Cola Company of Wichita, Kansas 'stole' the term from Bludwine!

So far this is the earliest Bludwine ad I can find that used the term "Hobble Skirt Bottle"

From ...

The El Paso Herald ~ El Paso, Texas ~ March 15, 1913

Bludwine El Paso Herald March 15, 1913.jpg
 

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
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I'm not sure just how early Bludwine used the term "Hobble Skirt Bottle" but here it is again from ...

The San Bernardino Free Press ~ San Bernardino, California ~ June 23, 1914


Bludwine Hobble Skirt San Bernardino Free Press Calif June 23, 1914.jpg
 

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
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I don't know the exact date for this Bludwine sign but that doesn't really matter now because we already know that Coca Cola was not the first soft drink to use the term "Hobble Skirt Bottle"

Bludwine Sign Hobble Skirt Bottle.jpg
 

iggyworf

Well-Known Member
Mar 13, 2013
1,810
38
S.E. Michigan
Wow! That's great stuff Bob. Never would have guessed that. Always thought that 'hobbleskirt' was a coca cola thing. Good work.
 

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
0
Thanks, guys

And even though 1913 is the earliest date I can find for when Bludwine first used the term "Hobble Skirt Bottle" the bottle itself wasn't actually patented until a few years later. According to this link, a similar bottle was used by Bludwine as early as 1906.

http://bludwine.com/photo2.html


And here's what I believe is the original patent ...

Filed: July 17, 1917
Patented: June 28, 1921

Bludwine Bottle Patent 1917 1921 (2).jpg
 

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
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This ad is from 1922 after they changed the name from Bludwine to Budwine, but notice at the bottom where it says ...

The Original "Hobble Skirt" Bottle

As we have seen, by 1922 Coca Cola had already jumped on the "Hobble Skirt" band-wagon and because Bludwine/Budwine knew they were the first to use the term, they were probably upset with Coca Cola and decided to add the word "Original" in their ads so that everyone knew where the term and bottle style originated from.

The Atlanta Constitution ~ Atlanta, Georgia (Home of Coca Cola) ~ May 22, 1922

View attachment 169057
 
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SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
0
P.S.

I have access to 140,000,000 pages of newspaper archives that go as far back as the 1700s, and the 1910 New York Times article I posted is the absolute earliest use of the words "hobble skirt" I can find and it appears that's where the term originated.

We may never know who first coined the term "Hobble Skirt" but it wasn't the journalist who wrote the article in the New York Times on June 12, 1910 as I previously thought. I just found a slightly earlier date from ...

The Detroit Free Press ~ Detroit, Michigan ~ May 1, 1910

But even this earlier reference doesn't sound like she originated the term. The way its worded sounds more like she is using the term as if she had heard it someplace and is reusing it. Based on what I've seen, the term "Hobble Skirt" most likely originated in Paris, France and possibly had some connection with a fashion designer named Paul Poiret. But regardless of who originated the term, until something presents itself with an earlier date, I'm giving credit for its first appearance in an American newspaper to ...

Geraldine De Longville

Hobble Skirt Detroit Free Press May 1, 1910.jpg
 
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SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
0
Reminder ...

There are no/zero/nada uses of the word "Hobble Skirt" in the 1909 or earlier newspapers that I have access to! But after May of 1910 and well into the 1930s there are literally thousands of newspaper listings for it.
 

SODAPOPBOB

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2010
11,502
0
That's pretty much everything I have regarding "Hobble Skirts" and/or "Hobble-Skirt Bottles"

I wonder if Jill is still around? The last we heard from her she was "writing up the answer now"
 

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