Paper labels on round bottom ginger ale bottles

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Ginger Ale collector

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Hello all, Ginger Ale collector (aka Ken) here. Recently we had an interesting thread on the "Before 1900, what is it?" forum. It is about a identifying a round bottom bottle from just a few remnants of the label. https://www.antique-bottles.net/threads/blob-top-bottle-partial-label.699924/ In the resulting discussion, CanadianBottles said "it's amazing to me that there are any intact examples of the label still existing at all." He is right, there are not many of any labels on round bottom bottles. Either they were washed off to reuse the bottle, or just deteriorated completely. I promised CanadianBottles I would post some pics of paper-labelled round bottom bottles from my collection. To continue the discussion, it really belonged over here in the Soda Bottle forum, so here it is.

The pics are numbered below.

#1: Delatour, NY, NY This is the label that solved the mystery in the "Before 1900" thread. The bottle was made by Kilner Brothers in England, ca. 1900. When I got this bottle I wasn't sure that the label was original to the bottle, but seeing the remnants on Hank's blob top in the thread, that indicated it was possible, but still confusing because of the difference in how the bottles were finished. Blob top and crown tops were both being made at that time in England.

#2: Bolen & Byrne Here is an American bottler using an English bottle. The clunky blob top style is typically English (it is remotely possible to be made in Ireland), but the proof of origin, not clear in the photo, is the embossing around the base "See that each cork is branded Cantrell and Cochrane Belfast & Dublin."

#3 Pacific and Puget Sound Bottling Company, Seattle, WA.
Another American bottler reusing an English bottle. There is another example of this label on a round bottom bottle, so it's a good bet that this is an original label.

#4 Stockton Springs Again, an English bottle. The only other known example of this label is in the Maine State Museum archives, and not on a bottle.

#5 Saratoga Springs The famous Saratoga Vichy spring water joined the ginger ale parade. This crown top could have been made overseas or in the U.S., but it is hard to determine. This is the only example I have seen.

#6 Cantrell & Cochrane This bottle has the typical "doughnut" blob seen on many English round bottom bottles. However, the label says in very small print "Made in Ireland." Of course, that reference was to the ginger ale, not the bottle. This most likely was one of the millions of ginger ale bottles exported from Ireland to the U.S. This type was either reused here, or shipped home empty, to be refilled.

#7 Cantrell & Cochrane Another example of a crown top made in England by the Kilner Brothers (A small KB is embossed on the bottom.) This label also says "Made in Ireland." Like the blob top C&C #6, once empty, these were reused or headed back to Ireland.

#8 Gurd's, Montreal, Canada. Yes, not a round bottom, but because the poster CanadianBottles' comment in the other thread inspired this post, I thought he (and others) would enjoy seeing a very rare paper label on a fully embossed Gurd's machine-made crown top. I don't know how rare the bottle is, with the paper label it sure is one of my favorites.

Lastly, for those who want to get an updated history of the origins and evolution of ginger ale, plus an exploration of facts, assumptions, and stories, about round bottom bottles, you can read all about it at this link.

Ken P.


Delatour Crown top.ga.jpg
Bolen & Byrne on Cantrell Bottle 1.ga.jpg
Puget Sound Round bottom.ga.jpg
Stockton Round Bottom Blob.ga.jpg
Saratoga Round Bottom Crown.ga.jpg
Cantrell & Cochrane Round Bottom blob.ga.jpg
Cantrell & Cochrane Round bottom Crown.ga.jpg
Gurd Paper Label Crown top.ga.jpg
 

nhpharm

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These are so cool-I really appreciate you posting these. It is so hard to find any sort of soda bottle with the original paper label...in 30+ years of collecting New Hampshire sodas I have only found a handful that would be pre-1900 and of course down here in Texas the labels just flat out didn't survive. I would love to see what one of the early Texas ginger ale bottles such as a Cortes or an Arto would have had for a label.
 

DeepSeaDan

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Hello all, Ginger Ale collector (aka Ken) here. Recently we had an interesting thread on the "Before 1900, what is it?" forum. It is about a identifying a round bottom bottle from just a few remnants of the label. https://www.antique-bottles.net/threads/blob-top-bottle-partial-label.699924/ In the resulting discussion, CanadianBottles said "it's amazing to me that there are any intact examples of the label still existing at all." He is right, there are not many of any labels on round bottom bottles. Either they were washed off to reuse the bottle, or just deteriorated completely. I promised CanadianBottles I would post some pics of paper-labelled round bottom bottles from my collection. To continue the discussion, it really belonged over here in the Soda Bottle forum, so here it is.

The pics are numbered below.

#1: Delatour, NY, NY This is the label that solved the mystery in the "Before 1900" thread. The bottle was made by Kilner Brothers in England, ca. 1900. When I got this bottle I wasn't sure that the label was original to the bottle, but seeing the remnants on Hank's blob top in the thread, that indicated it was possible, but still confusing because of the difference in how the bottles were finished. Blob top and crown tops were both being made at that time in England.

#2: Bolen & Byrne Here is an American bottler using an English bottle. The clunky blob top style is typically English (it is remotely possible to be made in Ireland), but the proof of origin, not clear in the photo, is the embossing around the base "See that each cork is branded Cantrell and Cochrane Belfast & Dublin."

#3 Pacific and Puget Sound Bottling Company, Seattle, WA.
Another American bottler reusing an English bottle. There is another example of this label on a round bottom bottle, so it's a good bet that this is an original label.

#4 Stockton Springs Again, an English bottle. The only other known example of this label is in the Maine State Museum archives, and not on a bottle.

#5 Saratoga Springs The famous Saratoga Vichy spring water joined the ginger ale parade. This crown top could have been made overseas or in the U.S., but it is hard to determine. This is the only example I have seen.

#6 Cantrell & Cochrane This bottle has the typical "doughnut" blob seen on many English round bottom bottles. However, the label says in very small print "Made in Ireland." Of course, that reference was to the ginger ale, not the bottle. This most likely was one of the millions of ginger ale bottles exported from Ireland to the U.S. This type was either reused here, or shipped home empty, to be refilled.

#7 Cantrell & Cochrane Another example of a crown top made in England by the Kilner Brothers (A small KB is embossed on the bottom.) This label also says "Made in Ireland." Like the blob top C&C #6, once empty, these were reused or headed back to Ireland.

#8 Gurd's, Montreal, Canada. Yes, not a round bottom, but because the poster CanadianBottles' comment in the other thread inspired this post, I thought he (and others) would enjoy seeing a very rare paper label on a fully embossed Gurd's machine-made crown top. I don't know how rare the bottle is, with the paper label it sure is one of my favorites.

Lastly, for those who want to get an updated history of the origins and evolution of ginger ale, plus an exploration of facts, assumptions, and stories, about round bottom bottles, you can read all about it at this link.

Ken P.


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Those are amazing! Great to see some preservation of these labels.
 

Hladnopivo

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Thanks so much for posting these! This is an invaluable resource for me! Just a stunning collection!
 

CanadianBottles

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Wow those are great! I don't remember ever coming across a labeled round bottom before. Based on the condition of the paper I would assume that all of them are original in the sense that they weren't NOS labels stuck on recently. Bottles were reused so much in those days that it's hard to say what was original in the sense of being the first label used on a bottle.
And yes that Gurd's is great! The bottles are pretty common but that's the first one I've seen that's still got a label.
 

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