Help with John Chek Bottle blob top from Woodbridge N.J.

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Crushy

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Hi all. I put a post about this in one of the other categories the other day but probably should have gone here. Since then, I decided to pick up this bottle. I've attached some better pics of the bottle. The base has a 58 over top of a J in the center. There are some other figures above those on the base, but too faint to make out what they are. Not sure how a circa 1900 bottle from New Jersey ended up in the middle of Saskatchewan, Canada, but it did. Welcome information about the bottler and age/story of the bottle. Thanks.
 

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SODABOB

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Crushy

Even though there isn't a lot of information about John Chek I managed to find several census records and a naturalization record from 1902. I also found a couple of newspaper snippets.One from 1907 and one from 1917. He was born in Hungry around 1869 and died around 1950. Everything I have seen says he was a Saloon keeper. So I suspect your bottle is a beer bottle and not a soda bottle. The earliest record I could find is the 1900 census, although there may be earlier records. I could not find any Canadian connections. I hope this information helps.

Bob
 

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SODABOB

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Crushy

Even though the 1900 Census I posted doesn't show the exact address, it does show "Second Street" in the far left column. Your bottle is embossed with "23-2nd St." The attached 1910 Census shows 23 Second Street, plus "Hotel Proprietor" which could also have had a saloon. The 1917 newspaper article I posted also has 23 Second Street. So all of those seem to be a match. What I don't know is when your bottle was made. However, some glass manufacturers were still making blob-top bottles as late as 1915. Even though machine made bottles started around 1905, some of them were hand-blown as late as 1915. In other words, your bottle was likely made sometime between 1900 and 1915. According to the 1900 Census John Chek was 30 years old at the time. Even though it's possible, it's hard to imagine that he would have been the proprietor of a saloon any younger than that.

Bob

 

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SODABOB

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Speaking of 23 Second Street, here are a couple of Sanborn fire insurance maps that show a saloon at that location - 1909 and 1916 - at the bottom of each map

Bob
 

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Crushy

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Crushy

Even though there isn't a lot of information about John Chek I managed to find several census records and a naturalization record from 1902. I also found a couple of newspaper snippets.One from 1907 and one from 1917. He was born in Hungry around 1869 and died around 1950. Everything I have seen says he was a Saloon keeper. So I suspect your bottle is a beer bottle and not a soda bottle. The earliest record I could find is the 1900 census, although there may be earlier records. I could not find any Canadian connections. I hope this information helps.

Bob
Hi Bob. Was away on vacation and delighted to find your multiple replies when I got home today. Some good research and the links are great. What you're saying about it possibly being a beer bottle makes sense given his business. Don't see many that colour or style for beer in Canada but seems there was more liberal use of bottles of any colour for soda or beer in the US in the early 1900s. You've certainly provided me with some great jumping off points to research further. Thank you very much.
 

SODABOB

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Crush

I found a variation of your bottle that doesn't have the address on it but it does have an interesting base mark. I attached two examples of the other base for comparison. Notice on the variation what appears to be a strange looking C in the first photo. But when you rotate it the mark appears to be a J with a slightly disconnected C - like a cattle brand might look like. If it is a JC I wonder if it stands for John Chek? Maybe your bottle has the same mark but it didn't get fully embossed when it was made?

Bob

1. Variation Bottle
2. Variation Base Rotated - C ?
3. Your Base - J
4. Variation Base - JC ?
 

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  • Chek Bottle Base.jpg
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Crushy

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Interesting. Looks like the one you found might be an older bottle based on the top. Very different approaches to the base stamping. yours has the letter in the centre while mine has a number in that location. Not sure if mine was intended to have anything other than the J. Mine looks to have maybe a bit more precision and the J is centered directly under the '58' number. If there was supposed to be another letter, I expect it would have been more to one side or the other. That said, you can see some very unexpected things on bottles of this age.
 

historic-antiques

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Hi all. I put a post about this in one of the other categories the other day but probably should have gone here. Since then, I decided to pick up this bottle. I've attached some better pics of the bottle. The base has a 58 over top of a J in the center. There are some other figures above those on the base, but too faint to make out what they are. Not sure how a circa 1900 bottle from New Jersey ended up in the middle of Saskatchewan, Canada, but it did. Welcome information about the bottler and age/story of the bottle. Thanks.
Beautiful - if "misplaced" bottle!!!
 

Sodasandbeers

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Few more notes:
Married Mary Bennes on November 24, 1891, she was from NY City, and he was from Woodbridge, NJ. They were both from Fony in Hungary
1905 NJ Census states he was born on February 3, 1868, was married, was in the country 15 years and was naturalized.
1915 NJ Census states he was born in January,1870, was married 25 years and was a saloon keeper on Second St.
Find a grave list the dates of 1869-1951 as his dates Picture of John & wife Mary, Death cert records his death on March 24, 1951
Ca: 1910 Family Photo Family Photo 1910
1920 Census was a laborer at a Lead Foundry in Perth Amboy states he emigrated to the US in 1890
Transferred liquor license to Paul Brazzi on April 24, 1917
Directory Listings in Woodbridge:
1903 Chek, John, saloon Second h do
1904 Chek, John, saloon Second h do

1912 Chek, John, Saloons 23 Second
1913 Chek, John, saloon 23 Second, 23 2d, h do
1914 Chek, John, saloon 23 Second, 23 2d, h do
1915 Chek, John, saloon 23 Second, 23 2d, h do
1916 Chek, John, saloon 23 Second, 23 2d, h do
1917 Chek, John, saloon 23 Second, 23 2d, h do
1918 Brazi, Paul, saloon 23 2d, h do

Safely you bottle is no later than 1917 when the business was sold. I would date your bottle 1910-1913. The property of bottles tend to be later, but without the Contents embossing they are unlikely to date after 1913, when laws requiring the list on contents be on the bottle. There are no know Brazi bottles.
 

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