Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Lyon's Powder B&P N.Y.

Emanuel Lyon is reported to have started in business as early as the late 1840’s at 424 Broadway in New York City. His embossed bottle is believed to have been produced starting sometime in 1859. Embossed LYONS/POWDER on the front shoulder of the bottle and B&P N.Y. on the reverse shoulder. The B&P embossed on the reverse quite possibly stand’s for the wholesale drug firm of Barnes & Park who were also located in New York City.

Collectors believe Lyons Powder was used as a dusting powder to kill household bugs and insects. Redington & Co., San Francisco wholesale druggists, lists the Lyon’s product as a flea powder in several of their early advertisements.

This bottle comes in two sizes with the large size being the rarer of the two variants. The Lyons can be found in several different colors ranging from amber to yellow, puce, aqua and various shades of green. These bottles were made for a long period of time; the earliest variants come with an open pontil, and the later found with a smooth base.
The Lyons bottle is often found in the larger camps and towns in the California gold rush country. Here in Sierra County, in the smaller settlements and camps, we rarely find any Lyons bottles. Seems like the small camps didn't have bug problems, or if they did, Schnapps, Gin and bitters was the preferred remedy.


  1. Neat little bottles that were blown in myriad colors. I also have a modest assemblage of them.

  2. From what I understand, the Rarest Lyon's are the Aqua ones, in the Open Pontil's Amber and the Hinge or Smooth base ones the Off Colors. This type of bottle was also one of the most Pirated Bottles out there, with many other companies jumping on the Bug Wagon, all with the same or very close copies of the bottles with different names. I have some slick Open Pontil Bug Bottles too.