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Dub

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Just got a millerhaus famous liniment bottle. Looking into it I found a few of the same bottles but with different names. Now I feel I need one of each, lol. . Anyone know how many different ones there are? The first two pictures are of the one I have.
 

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CanadianBottles

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That's interesting, so I guess this was the sort of thing where the local druggist could order these with their name printed on the label? I've seen some similar things but not really for this type of product and not with this many variations. I wonder who was producing them. I doubt anyone knows how many there are, you're probably the first person to start compiling examples of the different ones out there.
 
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Dub

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That would be kinda cool to be the first but there's probably an old bottle head out there that knows all about them with 17 variations and still looking for two rare ones, lol.
 

Dub

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So far I have found 5 different ones,
Millerhaus, Cinn Oh.
Williams, Binghamton NY,
Woods/Woods Health Chautauqua, Richmond VA,
Chief Frank Kahdot, Konowa Ok,
And new to the list, Sag-wa, Cinn Oh. .
Anyone have another to add? All help is appreciated!
 

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CanadianBottles

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I didn't realize that these bottles have some connection with "snake oil" - that's basically the same snake graphic used on this ad which isn't obviously connected to any of those bottles:
1715496564513.png

Someone may have researched these in that case, though I suspect it would be more likely to have been a historian than a bottle collector. Millerhaus shows up in this article, although they don't know much about the company either: https://www.researchgate.net/profil...s-and-Cures-Snake-oil-and-Indian-liniment.pdf
The slogan "striking at your muscular pain" suggests that these bottles date from an era when snake oil began to be synonymous with fraud, and they wanted a different explanation for why they had a picture of a snake on their bottle.


Here's a different, but similar bottle, for Worthe Famous Pioneer Oil from Brownsville, TX. The bottle and label are different, but the snake is the same. The article describes it being sold at medicine shows: https://yorkblog.com/universal/2129/
1715497107583.png


Here are several more I've been able to find:
Zoola's Famous Liniment, from the Zoola Khan Herb Co. The part of the label showing the city isn't visible in the photo.
1715497510448.png


And here's Half Moon's Famous Liniment, prepared by Half Moon who had a PO box in Lexington KY.
1715497744690.png


Silver Cloud Famous Liniment, from Silver Cloud Products in Cincinnati.
1715497911060.png
1715497933192.png


Napier's Famous Oil Liniment, from Chief D.A. Napier of Burbank CA.
1715498191162.png

Chief D.A. Napier also had a PO box in Council Bluffs IA at one point.
1715498755722.png

And he also used totally different label at one point as well.
1715498850388.png


Here's a variation, Thunder Cloud Famous Oil Liniment, from Chief Thunder Cloud of Cincinnati. In this case the guy's face has replaced the snake.
1715498413122.png



Presumably these bottles were all being sold at travelling medicine shows, and the snake oil salesman would have the bottles printed up with his name (or stage name, I can't imagine any of these guys were actual chiefs). It's not clear who was selling the snake oil to the snake oil salesmen though. It's interesting that they almost all have the same graphics, it suggests that there was one snake oil wholesaler who was supplying the oil and the packaging (and who knows what else) to anyone who wanted to be a snake oil salesman. There's quite an interesting research paper there to be written if someone wants to take a deep dive into that history.

Edit: An awful lot of them are based out of Cincinnati, aren't they? Seems there's probably a reason for that, it's hard to imagine that the city was just overrun with snake oil salesmen all hawking near-identical bottles.
 

CanadianBottles

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A related product from the Cel-Ton-Sa Company, Wittman's Oriental Oil. I've got to say, while I've seen plenty of medicines expressing the general sentiment, I don't think I've ever seen a phrase quite like "R e l i e v e s the Pain of Man or CATTLE."
1715499515368.png
 

CanadianBottles

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This Woodard's Famous Liniment looks like an early predecessor to the little cylinder bottles.
1715500081265.png
 

Dub

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Great investigation work Canada! . I've not even got to read all your research yet. Got some personal things going on right now. But will look at all of it soon. . Thanks again!
 

sandchip

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All I know is Daddy believed in the stuff after overdoing it at work.
 

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