Monday, June 11, 2018

The Neustadter Brothers

San Francisco Gold Rush Merchants
 
 
The firm of Neustadters Brothers was established in 1852 by the brothers Louis W. and Henry Neustadter. The company was one of the earliest men’s clothing manufacturer in San Francisco.

Louis Neustadter is listed in the 1847-48 New York City Directory selling or manufacturing fancy goods. He most likely left New York for the California gold rush sometime after 1847.

New York City directory 1847-48

The California gold rush was the largest mass migration in American history and brought about 300,00 people to California. Louis Neustadter saw the need for goods and services in the emerging and soon to become state of California and opened a business in San Francisco 
 
The first mention of the Neustadter's in San Francisco was in the January 1850 edition of the Daily Alta California newspaper advertising the dissolution of the partnership of the business of Adelsdorfer and Louis W. Neustadter located on Sacramento Street in San Francisco.
 

Daily Alta California January 1850   
 
The 1852-53 San Francisco directory lists Neustadter & Company as dealers in clothing at 132 California Street. The directory also lists Louis and Henry Neustadter as commission merchants at 113 Sacramento Street  A commission merchant is someone who buys or sells products for a percentage of the sales price. During the early period of the California gold rush ship loads of all sort of products were sold right off of the wharfs or ships by commission merchants. The directory also lists N. Neustadter at 132 California Street as selling clothing.
 

San Francisco City directory 1852-53
 
The 1854 LeCount & Strong San Francisco directory lists N. Neustadter & Co. at 132 California selling clothing.
 
LeCount & Strong 1854 San Francisco directory
 
The September 1857 edition of the Daily California lists the copartnership of  Henry and Louis Neustadter
 
1857 Daily Alta California
 
San Francisco directory 1859
 
The firm of Neustadter Brothers continued to grow and expand in the 1860's and became known for their Standard Shirt brand and Boss of the Road overalls. They were in direct competition with the well known San Francisco firm of Levi Strauss & Co. 
 
 
 
As successful as the Neustadter Brothers were in the clothing business gold rush history buffs and collectors of gold rush clasps will always remember them as the manufacturers of the rare stamped belt clasp marked:
 
 NEUSTADTER BROTHERS / SAN FRANCISCO
 
 
Thanks to Max Bell for the image  - rs -
 
 
 
 
 
 

 


Reno 2020


RENO announced for the 2020 National Antique Bottle Show & Expo

After an extensive search, negotiations, presentations and FOHBC board approval, Reno has be selected as the location for the FOHBC 2020 National Antique Bottle Show & Expo. The event will be held at the Grand Sierra Resort & Casino. Richard Siri will act as Show Chair. Team Reno at this point will also include Warren Friedrich, Eric McGuire and Ferdinand Meyer V. Essentially the same team as the very successful 2016 Sacramento National.

Stay tuned for more information!

https://www.fohbc.org/2018/06/reno-announced-for-the-2020-national-antique-bottle-show-expo/

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

I have been getting into the Western Whiskey bottles, my latest acquisition, Old Judge. Applied top, red amber, whittled.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Reno Show 2020

Signed a contract with the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno for the FOHBC show in 2020 . The dates are July 30 to August 2 start making your plans now

Friday, June 1, 2018

Alex Von Humbolt & Roger Terry


While visiting the Peachridge Glass site I stumbled across a link to an old post that my amigo Roger Terry wrote for this here Western Bottle News back in 2010. It was so well written and interesting that I though I would bring it back for those that missed it when it was published:



HISTORICALLY SPEAKING

A new record price for a flask!     What a flask it is..  the famous "Firecracker Flask".   A flask that honors  two of the great men in U.S. history,   framers of the Constitution,  former presidents of these United States.   They both died on July 4, 1826,  within hours of each other.  Exactly 50 years from the signing of the Declaration!

Can it possibly get more "historical" than that?   I don't think so.

Pikes Peak flasks,  Civil War flasks,  Success to the Railroad,  Tippecanoe Cabin,  all of the pictorial flasks,  whew!!    They are beautiful,  and historical!    They are out of my league... and out of my limited realm of knowledge..  and for the most part out of my pocket book capacity.


We western digger/collectors just have bottles.   Good old bottles!    Crazy names,  funny shapes,  beautiful colors.   I guess we have a few that have a historical theme...  the beautiful Chalmer's Catawba Wine Bitters... Sutter' Mill,  or the Old Pioneer Whiskey...the California Bear   (can you hear the scoffs and hoots raining down from east of the Mississippi)  ha, ha!

Ok,  we have what we have... but we do have a name on a bottle that is tied to Mr. Jefferson.  His name is tied to Lewis & Clark,  tied to John C. Fremont,  to Charles Darwin,  tied to half the western U.S.


HUMBOLDT

If you live in N. California, or N. Nevada  how often do you say that name,  as compared to John Adams, or maybe even T. Jefferson.
 
 
 






"Alexander von Humboldt was the reigning scientific mind of the early nineteenth century, a unique combination of naturalist and adventurer.  With his companion, Aime Bonpland,  Humboldt cut a six thousand mile swath across the New World, through what is now Venezuela, Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, and Cuba.  Risking his life in treacherous terrain, he conducted the first extensive scientific explorations of the Andes and the Amazon, literally redrawing the map of the Americas and dramatically expanding our knowledge of the natural world.  He brought back to Europe more than 60,000 plant specimens and a multitude of exotic New World animals, set an altitude record while climbing the volcano Chimborazo, made revolutionary discoveries regarding volcanoes and the Earth's magnetic field,  and introduced millions of Americans and Europeans to the astonishing cultures of the Aztecs and the Incas. 
At the completion of his epic journey, Humboldt became one of the most celebrated men in the world,  feted by Thomas Jefferson in Washington and  invited to Napoleon's coronation in Paris.  His ideas revolutionized scientific research,  laid the ground work for entire new fields of study, such as climatology, oceanography, and several branch's of geography.  His adventures profoundly influenced followers and students such as Charles Darwin.  Today,  more places and geographical features are named after Humboldt than any other historical figure,  and scientists continue to build on the foundations he established."  -  Gerard Helferich
 
Alex von Humboldt,  incredible traveler, author,  and father figure of science,  was perhaps the most admired man of the 19th century.  Fourteen towns in the United States and one in Canada are named for him.  Mountains in Antarctica, North and South America, Australia, New Zealand.  An ocean current off of Peru,  the largest glacier in Greenland.  A bay, a county, a university, a redwood forest in California.   Streams, parks, city streets,  even a "sea" on the moon carry his name. 


The map of Northern Nevada is covered with Humboldts name;  the county, a town, a canyon, a mountain range,  a huge national forest.  Most of the California and Nevada naming was due to the little "Pathfinder".  John C. Fremont.   Fremont was an ardent Humboldt admirer,  naming the river that marked the westward expansion and later the gold rush trail.  

Fremont's diary- Nov. 8th, 1845.  " Crane's Branch led into a larger stream that was one of the two forks forming a river to which I gave the name of Humboldt.  I am given by Himself the honor of being the first to place his great name on the map of the continent.  Both the river and mountain to which I gave his name are conspicuous;  the river stretching across the Basin to the foot of the Sierra Nevada."
Ok, Ok... it looks like I know way too much about Humboldt.   I put together a display for the Reno Show a few years ago...  this is just some of that material.   I always loved the photos of the Alex von Humboldts Stomach Bitters bottle in Wilson's Western Bitters.    The two bottles,  one plain-jane,  the other whittled, crooked,  crude.. the epitome of what we want in a western bitters.  If there was a picture that I went back to over and over and helped to form my fascination with Western Bitters,  that's it.   I thought I knew I little about the bottles when I put together that display.   Warren F.'s research will change much of the previous written information about the manufacturers,  even the date of distribution.  I thought for sure the beginning had to be 1869,  the hundred year centenary of  Humboldts birth.   Nope!  
Wilson had one thing right about Alex von Humboldt;  he "isolated the deadly native poison 'curare'."   That he did,  but it's kinda like condensing Abe Lincoln's accomplishments down to "being tall".
 
 





So,  if your not buying the "Historical of the West" thing...  don't confuse our bottle with the lame looking Eastern aqua bitters.   Our   ALEX VON HUMBOLDTS / STOMACH BITTERS  was blown in San Francisco.
 
Well done Roger - Well done!
rs
 
(Thanks to Dale Mlasko & Ferdinand Meyer for the pictures)

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

From Charles Festersen

Hi Rick ;
 I acquired an Oregon Grape Root Bitters not long ago and thought I would send you some photos for your website as nothing has been posted there on this particular bottle before. Below is the description and history of the bottle as published by Bill and Betty Wilson in there 1969 book Western Bitters. I hope it is of interest to your readers. - Charles F.
 
 
 
64. Embossed:   ORGON / GRAPE ROOT / BITTERS.   Cylindrical sixth. Extremely Rare. Made in 1885 only. Clear - 48*
 
 

 George and August Wolters had been in the wholesale liquor business for over six years in San Francisco when this new brand was introduced. The main ingredient for the formula was the bitter root of any evergreen shrub of the Barberry family which grows mainly in northern California and Oregon. The flower of the bush is the Oregon state flower. 
    The expensive clear flint glass bottle was discontinued after only one order from the glass works and the sold in paper labeled bottles for a year or so before it was discontinued.
 

 
Charles; the Oregon Grape Root Bitters, is indeed, a very rare and interesting western bottle from the Wolters Brothers firm. Thanks for the information and the pictures. - rs -
 
Anyone have any additional information on the Oregon Grape Root Bitters?

This bitters is pretty scarce. I don't believe these bottles are made of flint glass. They are what the glass works referred to as white glass, and I have seen this bitters in a sun colored amethyst tint.
Warren Friedrich

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Sands Sarsaparilla

A.B. SANDS & CO.
SANDS SARSAPARILLA
NEW YORK

Abraham B. Sands of New York City opened his first retail drug store sometime around 1840. In 1842 he expanded his horizons and opened a wholesale store at another location installing David Sands in the original retail store. By 1843 Sands has published a informative pamphlet on the curative properties of their sarsaparilla product.  In early 1850 the firm of A B & D Sands emerged as a wholesale and retail drug company and were advertising regularly in local newspapers.

By 1851 David retired, was replaced by William Sands, and the firm was listed as A.B. Sands & Co. After 1851 Sands & Co. became primarily a wholesale drug operation. Sands produced other products (Horehound Cough Syrup, Liquid Opeldoc and Anodyne Liniment) but his sarsaparilla was by far his best seller. A.B. Sands & Co. continued in business until 1875 when the company was dissolved.
 
 
 
 
Pictured at right is the earliest example of the Sands Sarsaparilla. It has widely beveled corners and is embossed on three panels SANDS SARSAPARILLA NEW YORK. The Sand’s Sarsaparilla was distributed throughout the California  gold rush country. Open pontil examples of the Sand’s have been found from  San Francisco to the Mother Lode and the  gold rush camps and settlements of the Northern Mines. These bottles are considered  scarce but as with all gold rush era bottles are highly collectable and prized by western and gold rush bottle collectors. The Sand’s that I have examined, that were recovered from Sierra County, are usually pretty crude, highly whittled and usually come out of the ground without mineral staining
 
 
 

Pictured at left is a copy of a Sand's Sarsaparilla advertisement. The second variant of the Sand's bottle, on the right side of the ad, is being filled with the sarsaparilla product. Sand's sarsaparilla was coined by the company as "The Very Best Remedy for Purifying the Blood"
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 



Pictured at right is the later variant of the Sands bottle that was produced sometime after 1858. It still has a pontil base, but is a larger size, different shape, and has “GENUINE” embossed on one panel.

One whole example of the second variant of the Sands was recovered from the gold rush settlement of Excelsior in the early 1990’s. Two examples were recovered from the southern Sierra County settlement of Plum Valley and another mint example was un-earthed at Brandy City by a Nevada City digger. Numerous broken examples have been found at the Sierra County gold rush camps of  Monte Cristo, Poker Flat, Chaparral Hill and Rattlesnake. This variant of the Sands is considered more common than the earlier example with the widely beveled corners but is still a scarce and collectable gold rush bottle.



 
  



 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

The Wormser Brothers

 

The firm of Wormser Brother was located on the corner of California and Front Streets in San Francisco and listed as importers and jobbers of wines and liquors. Started sometime in 1856 Isaac Wormser, who was living in Germany, was the president of the company and his brother Lewis was the manager. In 1864 Lewis left San Francisco and his brother Simon took over management of the company. In October of 1867, during Simon’s management of the firm, they trademarked the “Golden Sheaf” brand of whiskey. By 1872 the Wormser Bros. business was sold to the firm of Braeg Frank and Dallemand.




The Wormser Brothers produced some of the more desirable western bottles while they were in business in San Francisco. The earliest glass container from the Wormser firm is the large whiskey flask horizontally embossed WORMSER BROS. SAN FRANCISCO. The Wormser  flask is considered very rare with possibly 8 to 12 examples in private collections. Several of these early containers seem to have poor quality glass with annealing checks and other manufacture related problems. It is not known if this bottle was blown in a San Francisco glass house or manufactured in the east and distributed in the west. 


Horizontal embossed Wormser flask circa 1867-69


It is believed the barrel shaped bottle with an applied tapered top and a smooth base embossed WORMSER BROS. SAN FRANCISCO was produced for a very short period of time, possibly in 1869 only. Although I could not find any advertisements to confirm what these bottles contained, Western collectors believe this container held a whiskey bitters product.

Wormser Bros. barrel style bottles

This barrel shaped bottle comes in various shades of amber from light yellow to darker brown amber. Most examples show very little crudity but a couple examples that I have observed have some pretty good whittle to the glass.

It is thought that there are between 25 and 30 of the Wormser Bros. barrels in collections at the present time. 
 Years ago, in the Virginia City area, several examples of the Wormser barrel were recovered from a large bottle digging excavation.
 
Vertical embossed Wormser flask


The last bottle produced by the Wormser Bros. is the vertically embossed flask. These bottles were more than likely manufactured post 1869. They come in colors ranging from dark chocolate to green and are the most common of the Wormser bottles.



 

 

Thanks to American Bottle Auctions, Western Whiskey Gazette, Western Whiskey blog site and Dale Mlasko for the images - rs -


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Mystery of the 1856 Patent Suspender Buckle
By Nicholas Kane
 
 
Back in the fall of 2001 I obtained permission to metal detect and dig a fantastic property. This camp produced many 1850s belt clasps and other metallic artifacts such as this suspender buckle. I was familiar with the buckle's 1856 Patent date but not with this elaborate embossing. Like it was yesterday I clearly remember gridding out a slope backwards through four foot tall poison oak that was below a large camp.
 
The camp was infested with square nails up top and most of the better targets were pitched down the hill where the poison oak happened to be. I spent close to four hours looking for the mate to this buckle with no avail. I never recovered the mate but did get a few hits from items such as a brass frame from a 1/6th plate image, brass shoe tips and a camphene or whale oil lamp burner that I thought were the buckle.
 
 
I managed to bring the "poison" home to my wife after immersing myself in the patch and I was in the dog house for quite some time after that. That poison was a beautiful green and just starting to  turn red.

I had a suspicion 15 years ago or so after a few hours of online research what the crossed U.S. and British Naval flag meant. Since that time I realized I really should do some research and see what I could come up with and share my findings with fellow history enthusiasts. I decided to try and find a western connection to the eastern event first for appeal and.... EUREKA!
 
This buckle dates from the correct period and I strongly believe it was created for this special event, as we all know, was often done during the mid 19th century.
 

 
 
 
 
 



Friday, April 6, 2018

F. Chevalier & Co. - the other side of the business

New post by Bruce Silva over at Western Whiskey Gazette
 
 
Check it out!

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Charles Langley


Alfred, James, and Charles Langley were born in Staffordshire, England in the first quarter of the 19th Century and in 1849 followed the world to California in search of gold. Unlike most adventurers, they were unprepared for gold fever, but - being two chemists and an accountant - they were well equipped to treat fevers of another kind.
 
                                                                   Image Brent Henningsen

 By the time the gold rush slowed to a ramble, the two eldest Langley brothers were ready to move on. Leaving Charles in San Francisco, Alfred and James travelled north with the new wave of gold seekers and wasted no time in opening the first wholesale and retail drugstore in the rapidly growing town of Victoria, British Columbia. Charles remained in San Francisco and was married to Helena who birthed one child, Charles Jr, born in 1857.

Following is what I believe to be the timeline of Charles Langley's doings in the wholesale drug business of San Francsico.

1854-1855: Hogg & Langley
1855-1861: C & AJ Langley
1861-1865: C Langley
1865-1869: Langley Crowell & Co
1869-1879: C Langley & Co
1880-Post 1900: Langley & Michaels

Charles Langley died on July 26, 1875 at the age of 51.

Based on the above timeline and Warren's research, we can safely deduce that the clear "C Langley" variant was blown in 1865 only while the aqua variant was blown after 1869 (but no newer than early 1870s based on empirical analysis).

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Sunday, March 18, 2018

F. Chevalier - Spirit, Bitters & Wine Merchant


Whiskey, wine and bitters merchant Fortune Chevalier was born in 1815 in Belle Isle, France. As a young man Chevalier apprenticed as a stained glass craftsman and together with a group of similar craftsmen, he worked all over France repairing the stained glass windows at various castles and churches.
In 1850 Fortune sailed to San Francisco with the intent of establishing a window construction and repair business but by 1857 was running a small unrelated business in bustling Placerville.
Chevalier later moved to Sacramento and went to work learning the wine and liquor business at the wholesale house of A.H. Powers & Co. Sometime after leaving Powers & Co. Chevalier started his own wholesale liquor concern at 42 K Street in Sacramento.
Chevalier became the sole agent for Old Castle Bourbon Whiskey and in 1872 he moved the business to San Francisco.
Three years later he took Augustus Comte into partnership. Comte had years of experience in the wine business and was possibly brought in as a partner to expand Chevalier's business into the wine market.
Meanwhile the F. Chevalier & Company was producing some of the most desirable and coveted glass containers ever blown on the west coast. The spiral neck Chevaliers Old Castle Whiskey, F. Chevalier red whittled Whiskey merchants fifth and the Chevalier Castle flask are all considered extremely collectable and high dollar additions to a western bottle collectors shelf.
Not as rare but just as collectable are the Chevalier bitters and cordial or tonic containers. The Celebrated Crown Bitters was produced from sometime in 1880 to around 1886. This bottle comes in both an applied top and tool top example. The applied top bottles are a little cruder and a lot more desirable than the tool top examples.
Chevalier also produced a "generic" product bottle after 1886 embossed The F. Chevalier Co. San Francisco. Western collectors generally believe that this container contained the Celebrated Crown Bitters also. In my opinion this bottle could have been used for the bitters, but also could have contained a cordial or tonic product.
Even though the two Chevalier bottles are a little later than the highly desirable late 1860's and early 1870 bitters bottles, they are still very collectable "western squares". The applied top and tool top Celebrated Crown Bitters along with the tool top Chevalier product bottle sure make a nice grouping of western bitters to have sitting on your shelf
 
 

Monday, February 19, 2018

GOLD RUSH SQUARES

More Than Meets Your Eye
The California gold rush produced some interesting and rare products that were contained in square glass bottles. Gin, various brands of schnapps and more than a handful of medicated, aromatic and other vague sounding alcohol based concoctions competed for their share of the California market.

Did the companies that produced and sold these products understand or care what words they had blown in the containers that held their products? I, for one, think they probably did. They chose carefully what they had embossed in their bottles to entice consumers, that could read, into buying their product. For those potential customers that couldn’t read, horses, jockeys, animals and other attractive objects were blown into their glass bottles. I’m not an expert on 1850-60s’ marketing, but I do know a little about the California gold rush. During the beginning of the gold rush you could sell anything you could get to California. Not so true during the mid to late 1850’s. By the late 1850’s every liquor distributor on the east coast was “riding the elephant” and the California market was flooded with goods from the east. Just take a look at any late 1850’s California newspaper and count the advertisements for cases of liquor products being auctioned right off of the wharf that the supply ship was moored to.

What this all boils down to is the competition was extremely fierce during the late 50s’ and early 60s’. Liquor distributors had to use their wits to compete in an over supplied market. “Medicated Gin”, “Aromatic Schnapps” and “Club House Gin” were but a few of the products that were being pushed on the buying public. The advertisements for these products claimed to cure as many ailments as the patent medicines of the period. Oh, and by the way, they tasted better and left you feeling tipsy if not downright comatose.

Ever wonder what these early gold rush squares contained? I certainly have. Two of the foremost products were Gin and Schnapps.

Gin - we all know that gin is a strong colorless alcoholic beverage made by distilling or redistilling rye or other grain spirits. There were dozens of varieties of gin and each agent claimed theirs was the best tasting, most medicinal or had the greatest healing properties.
London Gin is your basic run of the mill dry tasting gin and usually doesn’t have any flavorings or spices added. Old Tom Gin is a lightly sweetened gin that was very popular back in the day. Dutch or Holland gin was typically distilled from Juniper berries and had a distinctive aroma and flavor. And then there’s the medicated gin (containing some sort of medicine), Cordial Gin (a stimulating and invigorating concoction), Clubhouse (high class belonging to a club) kind of gin and it goes on and on.

Schnapps, on the other hand, is a Dutch spirit distilled from potatoes and sometimes other grains. Schnapps was possibly the first widely distributed liquor based product during the gold rush. We find scads of them in the early gold rush camps and towns here in California, and like the gins, there were dozens of different brands and types.

Udolpho Wolfe’s Aromatic Schnapps, the most common of schnapps found here in California, was a distilled spirit flavored with spices to give it a pleasing aroma and flavor. Voldner’s Aromatic Schiedam Schnapps was distilled from juniper berries, and as such, had a very different aromatic flavor.
The word Schiedam refers to not only to the city in Holland but to a particular type of schnapps. The recipe for Schiedam schnapps varied by manufacturer but almost always included the addition of honey, nutmeg and orange flower water to give it that “aromatic” flavor. Yummy! Schnapps was always advertised as a medicinal product and recommended for family consumption.

 These early western distributed square bottles are becoming harder to acquire and in greater demand by western bottle and gold rush memorabilia collectors. Clubhouse gins, aromatic schnapps, or one of the dozens of colorful embossed or un-embossed square glass containers, that made their way to California during the middle of the 19th century are a very collectable part of early California history.

Thanks to Max Bell for the pictures and contributions to this post
   

Thursday, February 15, 2018

WANTED!

 
" Wanted any 1850s heart shaped suspender buckles or examples with a rivet on the bottom " .
Thank You ,
Please contact :
Nicholas Kane


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

California's First Star

Image by Peter Loeser
Alvarado's California Flag             

California "Lone Star" Republic Flag 1836
In 1836, Juan Alvarado vowed to gain increased autonomy for California from Mexican rule with either "bullets or words." He hoisted this white flag with a single, centered, red five-pointed star at Monterey.
In 1834, Alvarado had been elected to the Alta California Legislature as a delegate and appointed customs inspector in Monterey. The Mexican government had then appointed Lieutenant Colonel Nicolas Guterrez as Governor against the wishes of the legislature. In November of 1836, Alvarado and Jose Castro (with Vallejo's political support) surrounded the presidio at Monterey and forced Guterrez to surrender power to them. At the time of Alvarado's revolt, he still favored remaining a part of Mexico, and working with the Mexican government. With Vallejo's political support, he went on to become a two-time Governor of Alta California from 1836-1837, and later between 1842-1845.

The red star signifies freedom and independence from Mexico. The original flag is preserved at the Autry National Center in Pasadena, Cal. It is the oldest surviving California flag.

This is how the five pointed western star began in California. 

Saturday, February 3, 2018

A WESTERN STAR ???

I love a mystery.. well, let me qualify that statement. I love to solve a mystery. At any one time I have several mystery's running around inside this old noggin.

Some of these mystery's are major, some minor. Take for instance the "Western R". Now here's a major mystery. When did the Western curved "R" first appear on western bottles? Is this "R"unique to one particular glass house or did both the SFGW and PGW use the curved "R"? Is this "R" from just one mold maker or was it used by several different craftsmen over a span of years? And just when did they quit using this "Western R"? This, for sure, is a mystery that I have tried to solve for a long time. Every time I think I am getting close to a conclusion another piece of information sends me off in another direction, or backward, and brings more questions than answers.


One of the minor mystery's that seems to be spinning around in perpetual motion is the N. Mills/ Fish's Infallible Hair Restorative. Here's a bottle that has collectors, and myself, debating if this bottle was blown in the west or is just another eastern made piece of glass used to market a western product. Take a look at that unique apostrophe shaped like a 7 and the funky R that seems to be curved in instead of out like the western "R". The only bottles that I can recall that share these qualities are all, I believe, eastern. The Fish's N. Mills, Fish's B.F. Fish, Risley's Buchu, and the Ghirardelli's Branch soda. Having said that, and now have scores of western collectors on the war path, lets move on to the reason for this post: THE WESTERN STAR.






Just when I was happy concentrating on one major, and the minor...small potato's Fish's mystery, Oregon collector Dale Mlasko throws down the gauntlet on "THE WESTERN STAR" Rat's !!!, another darn mystery. If I had any gumption I could let it go, but no, the seed has been planted and its already started to grow into a low rent, although interesting, mystery.







The  STAR Of THE UNION star is a exact match to the earlier gold rush buckle star. Crisp, sharp points and canted.





 



Dale claims that the square bottle with a star and TM embossed on it could quite possibly be a western blown bottle.  Dale's contention is that several western merchants have a star prominently displayed or embossed in the glass of their product. That is correct but the star on the bottle is not canted like the star on the advertisement.

Hmm... TM with star, J.F. Cutter Extra has a star in a shield, good ol' Jesse Moore has two stars in its logo and one is canted like the advertisement for the Star of the Union Bitters. The Bay City soda has a star, but its not pudgy like the J.F. or Jesse Moore star. If we are talking stars we had better look at the shape for clues as to whether its an eastern, military, shining, Carl's Jr. or western star, shouldn't we? Having dealt with a few mystery's over the years standard operating procedure dictates that, first off, you get as close to a subject as you can. If that doesn't help, then you get as far away as possible to get a different view of the whole situation. so.......

After a quick trip to Marysville  for a Carls Jr. burger I noticed the star on the burger wrapper didn't look anything like our (so-called) western star, its points were rounded and it had a smiley face on it. We can eliminate Carl's Jr.'s star as being modeled after the Star of the Union Bitters star.





Just look at a military star it means business, not bitters!




The Jesse Moore stars are a little more rounded in the web than the Star of the Union Star. The lower star in the Jesse logo is canted like the star in the advertisement for the (so-called western) bitters, but the similarity ends there. The J.F. Cutter star is way fatter and the web is a lot more rounded than the star embossed on the TM bottle.


What does all this information add up to? Basically, with the small amount of detective work that I have done, there doesn't seem to be any connection between the Star of the Union star and any of the stars embossed on known western bottles. Now if any of you have any theories or other evidence to link the TM star to a western product..........

 

Jesse Moore canted star


 CLICK on the pictures to enlarge - rs -