Sunday, May 21, 2017

A Gaggle of Jakes

If you collect western Jamaica Gingers it's a good time to add to your collection.
For the last week or so there have been at least a dozen western Jamaica Gingers on ebay for sale
A few years back you could pick up a colored jake once in a while at your local bottle show

Not so now a days. I haven't seen a colored jake on a bottle show sales table in a blue moon
But thanks to the world wide web with online bottle auctions......
Your western Jamaica Ginger collection is just a click away

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Dr. Barlow J. Smith's Caloric Vita Oil

Here's an interesting western cure that I have never heard of.


Anyone ever run across this bottle or have one in their collection 

 - rs -

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Bottle Collectors Take Fight to Federal Court

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Bob Ferraro Passes

It is with great sadness that I wanted to announce the passing of Bob Ferraro today.

Bob was a legend in the collecting hobby and a pioneer in western bottle collecting.

He will be missed.

Dale Mlasko

Bob & Connie Ferraro

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building 
Across from the 
Sonoma County Fairgrounds
Saturday, May 6th. - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission: $3.00
Dealer Set-up, early entry $10, Saturday 9-10 a.m.
Sunday, May 2nd. - 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admisson: FREE


This years show will be held with two other big events at the same location.
"Farmers Market” Saturday
The HUGE 40/8 "Flea Market” Sunday!
For the first time ever we've combined our show with one of the biggest collector Flea Mkts. in Northern California, the 40/8. This mkt draws hundreds of people to the venue.


There seems to be some sort of communication breakdown and these two great shows wound up being held on the same weekend. 
Pretty hard to attend both shows as they are hundreds of miles apart
Without your support our western bottle shows will be a thing of the past...... - rs -

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Sunday, April 2, 2017

From Charles Festersen

For some time now I have recognized that certain master inks and the Lacuor's bitters share some design similarities. However, last week was the first time I placed some side by side for comparison. Clearly there are significant differences yet, they seem to share a design theme. For me the comparison begs two questions. Which came first? And, was Louis Lacour's lighthouse design as original and unusual as I thought? In any case, I feel the photo I have included is visually appealing, and I hope, of at least passing interest to collectors

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Dr. Boerhaave's Stomach Bitters

The number of western made 1860's decade bitters bottles can almost be counted on both hands (aproximately 13 embossed on glass brands). Out of almost 100 brands manufactured for the western market, this is a pretty exclusive group. Most collectors would be pretty excited to have an example from this group.

Of those 13 brands of bitters bottles, approximately 4 are known in a square shaped container. This Boerhaave's example is in company with the Rosenbaums Bitters, Alex Von Humboldts Bitters and the G. A. Simon's Bitters as the only square shaped bitters made during the 1860's, (there are of course the Dr. Renz's Bitters and the E. G. Lyon's bottle but these continued into the 1870's decade).

Now that is an exclusive group! This particular example has some wonderful glass characteristics, the surface of the glass is whittled, which is not normally seen on these bottles, the old amber coloration varies in shades from the bottom half of the bottle being darker while the upper half is much lighter, with the neck and top being a darker shade again due to glass thickness. The embossing is quite bold, with the letters themselves being gloppy in appearance (my term used to describe the peaks and valleys of the letters due to the glass not forming evenly in the cavaties). There are currently 11 examples in western collections, 4 are a dark green coloration, 5 are various shades of amber, 1 is a light green color and 1 is a yellow olive coloration.

The firm of Siegfried Wertheimber and Louis Waterman were the manufacturers and proprietors of this bitters. It was first advertised on March 7th, 1868 with the principle depot being at 311 Commercial St, San Francisco, by June of 1868 the firm was advertising this product from their 219 Commercial St, S. F. address. Dr. Boerhaave's Bitters was also being advertised thru the Portland Morning Oregonian newspaper from May 15th, 1868 thru January 28th, 1869, Millard and Van Schuyver were the agents for Oregon. The Los Angeles Star newspaper ran an advertisement for the Boerhaave's Bitters placed by a local druggist for several mos. in 1868 as well.

Wertheimber & Waterman also marketed a cordial called The Splendid and another bitters called Boonekamp and Maag-Bitters, these two products continued to be advertised without the Boerhaave's bitters throughout 1869 in a Sacramento newspaper. At the 1868 San Francisco Mechanics Institute Fair, Wertheimber & Waterman displayed two kegs of their Boonekamp and Maag-Bitters along with a case of their Dr. Boerhaave's Stomach Bitters.

In a notice placed in the San Francisco Daily Examiner newspaper, the firm of Wertheimber & Waterman dissolved their partnership on September 25th, 1869. Siegfried Wertheimber having sold his entire interest in the business to Phillip Wertheimber and the firm continued as before under the name of Wertheimber & Waterman. [see post of September 21, 2009 for additional information on Dr. Boerhaave's Bitters.]
This is a re-post from a earlier article written by Warren Friedrich - rs -

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Chico Bottle Show

March 10th & 11th   (Friday & Saturday) Chico, California –

51st Annual Antique Bottle, Jar, Insulator & Collectable Show & Sale, Silver Dollar Fairgrounds, Chico, California, Friday, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, $5 for early lookers

Admission, Saturday, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Free Admission,

Contact Randy Taylor, P.O. Box 1065, Chico, California 95927, 530.518.7369,

Chico is one of my favorite shows, see you there - rs -

Friday, February 24, 2017

Eastern/Western Rosenbaums

Here is a nice looking large size Rosenbaums that should be eastern because of the dot on the base and the tapered top. I have a hard time believing that all dot based large size Rosenbaums are eastern blown. The color and character is spot on for early western glass and doesn't the top remind you of a Simons or Von Humodlts ?


Thursday, February 23, 2017

St. Clair's Hair Lotion Again

Here is 2 Different St. Clair's Hair Lotions, the darker one is what I have seen as Typical, the Lighter color ones I have not seen a lot of, its also got a nice Benicia Effect to it, is Cruder, The lighter one is 1/8" taller, Embossing Looks the same on both, Kind of like the one Lou posted, His looks like an Applied Top, these both are Tool Tops.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

St. Clair's Hair Lotion

1872 advertisement

Howard St. Clair Chemist Boston, Mass.
Western ? Blown in the east and distributed in the west? Well?...... - rs -

Hey Rick:
Hope all is well your way. The rain here has been unbelievable. Here’s a pic of the only Western version of this bottle that I’ve seen.

WOW! What an incredible example of the St. Clair's
Thanks Lou

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Just wondering if anyone has heard about any dates for a Reno, NV Show ?

Friday, February 10, 2017

Update: The Santa Rosa Antique Bottle & Collectibles show will be held on May 6th & 7th,  2017. The first weekend in May will now continue to be our annual date. Our venue had a change in staff who inadvertently sold our original 2017 date we had booked a year in advance.  Unknown to us, we had flyers printed with the wrong dates and distributed at the Downieville show.  With much apology from the Hall director, we were asked what they could do to make up for their screw-up. Finally they granted us the show date we’ve always wanted and always denied due to the other huge event at the venue.

 The 40/8 Flea Market is attended by hundreds if not thousands of people and is also on this first weekend. It’s not to be confused with the regular weekly flea mkt. we’ve held our show with in the past. This is one of the biggest annual flea markets in Northern California with loads of antiques & collectibles. It’s draws a large amount of both collectors and dealers from all over. Then on Saturday it’s the “Farmers” Mkt.” which will also be just outside our show doors.  This is an unbelievable venue for a bottle show, we will have lots of visitors. 

It was with much discussion among club members and voted upon to select this date.  As we look around there’s fewer bottle collectors as the years go by. Attendance at shows is down and 2nd  days are often a little to quiet. It’s important to get the general public exposed to the hobby and generate new collectors. Holding shows with like events is a benefit for dealer sales and a great way to generate new collectors.

Dealer & Show info at:

Follow the “Northwestern Bottle Collectors Association” at: on Facebook!

Monday, February 6, 2017

If You Didn't Know.....

American Bottle Auctions – Auction 63 is Now Open for Bidding!

Part One is Underway. The first of our two-part Madruga/O’Neill western auction is open for viewing and bidding starts today! Part one is open for bidding up until Sunday February 19th and part two will start on March 1 and end on March 19th. We’ve extended the bidding period for both parts of the auction so that everyone will have enough time to check it out. If you have any questions please let us know and we’ll be happy to answer them or simply email us and request extra photos or even a video and we can get them to you right away. Requested catalogs are being printed and will be in the mail tomorrow. Thank you for taking the time to check the auction out. We truly have the best customers in the world!

Auction 63 from American Bottle Auctions has some of the most incredible western bottles seen at auction in quite a while. There are offerings from most all category's of western blown bottles and it is well worth your time to take a look. - rs -

Tuesday, January 31, 2017


Now here’s a bottle that has always intrigued me. Just the name alone is strange, CONNELL’S BRAHMINICAL MOONPLANT EAST INDIAN REMEDIES, and the embossing with a pair of feet with stars surrounding them about takes the cake as far as interesting and quirky embossing goes in my book.
And how about the lettering font on this bottle!

The R in “BRAHMINICAL” is your basic straight leg R, however, the R in “REMEDIES” and “TRADEMARK” are the curved leg R associated with western glass houses. Could be the mold for this bottle was reworked and the “EAST INDIAN REMEDIES” and “TRADEMARK” added at a later date however I do not have any concrete proof that this was the case.

Was this a bitters, well it certainly was supposed to cure the same ailments as bitters, The definition of BRAHMINICAL is:  A member of a cultural and social elite, especially of that formed by descendants of old New England families. Hmm... Trying to find the definition of MOONPLANT led me to moonbeam (nickname for California's governor ) and moonflower which is defined as: Any of several unrelated vines which bloom at night. Even the name of this product has me baffled; was it an extract of some sort of climbing vine that was intended to be used by wealthy Boston socialites in the moonlight? 
I have heard that there are two variants of this bottle, one an eastern made product and the other western manufactured. What’s the difference?

The earliest and one of the only advertisements that I could find for the Moonplant was listed in the May 1873 Sacramento Daily Union and was repeated for a week or so, that’s it.

Thanks to Jeff Wichmann for the pictures

From Eric McGuire

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

So...What are these?


Here is an ad put out on 2/27/1867 in the Daily Alta that lends credence to the theory that western glass houses of the 1860s used the term "wines" to describe what we collectors now refer to as whiskey 6ths. Are we on to something?

Monday, January 23, 2017

This is interesting for 1864

From Cal49er

I was looking at some of my western manufactured wines and spices on a rainy day.   Brightened this day right up.  

Yep, that will brighten up even a snowy day. Thanks for the awesome pictures Max. - rs -

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Western Unembossed Squares ?

Looking back at some of the previous pictures submitted to the WBN on a snowy Sunday and ran across this interesting one from J.F. Cutter Extra

Thanks for the picture J.F are these still sitting on your shelf? - rs -

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Western Inks

From a Previous Post by Golden Plantation

Here’s grouping of some of the Western blown inks we‘ve dug in California over the years, circa 1868-74. The large master is e.r. and embossed “PACIFIC GLASS WORKS” on the base. It has an applied top that looks like a Western bitters or 5th with a pinched pour spout.

The school house with no panel embossing is the rarest of the aqua Western blown house inks. It has a steeper roof pitch and comes in deep greenish aqua like some of the early S.F. meds.

Top and base of pint size Pacific Glass Works master ink.

I thought this was an interesting and informative post for all the ink and western blown glass collectors Thanks Lou! - rs -

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

There has been some confusion on the date of the Anderson show and this year's show date is shown above. I wish someone from the Anderson Club would send out some sort of info on their upcoming show dates. The Western Bitters News, Western Whiskey Gazette, Peachridge Glass and Western Whiskies online sites all advertise upcoming bottle shows at no charge to the advertisers.