Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Grimm's Rejuvenator

One of the interesting San Francisco hair bottles, the Grimm's Rejuvenator, has always been of interest to me. I have searched from time to time to find any advertisements or information on the Grimm's product.

A. Grimm's Rejuvenator For The Hair with a double ring top
According to Bill and Betty Wilson's book 19th Century Medicine in Glass Adam H. Grimm became a hairdresser at the baths of the Lick House in San Francisco sometime in 1871. After some success Adam trained his son Adam Jr. in the business and employed him as a barber.
In 1876 Adam and Adam Jr. bought the Lick House. Around 1878 Adam Jr. decided to part ways with his father but his new endeavor failed and he went bankrupt. Adam Jr. went back to work for his father for the next 20 years and eventually took over the business when Adam Sr. retired.
                                                         A. Grimm's with a square collar applied top
The A. Grimm's is a 6 3/4" tall blown in mold aqua colored bottle. It has four panels and comes with both the applied double ring top and a square collar top. It is embossed on the side A.GRIMM'S on the front REJUVENATOR - FOR THE HAIR and on the other side panel SAN FRANCISCO.
I can't find any information on the age of this bottle but my best guess, from the time the Grimm's were in business, would be late 1870's to mid 1880's.
Our friend and fellow collector DM from Oregon acquired a stunning example of the Grimm's at the 2013 49er Bottle Show.
 Thanks to DM and the Utah Bottle Cliché for the pictures. Anyone have one of these examples for sale? - rs -

Numa G. added:
After a stint in the wholesale liquor business, Adam Grimm entered the hairdressing profession in 1863. I'm not sure where the 1871 date came from, but it is my opinion that the Grimm's bottles could be 1860s. Doesn't the apostrophe remind you of the cobalt Fish's ?  (yes it does - and that brings up another question - rs - ) We dug a damaged example in an unusual milky clear glass. Doesn't the milk glass remind you of the 1860s western blown extracts ? Based on the context of the hole that produced this clear example and the characteristics of the bottle, my guess on these would be 1864-1867

The Grimm's in a clear coloration with an applied square collar top.
Thanks to Numa G.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Super "Star"

Here is a deep aqua applied blob top soda recently found. I have seen the various star based fifths, and sixths, as well as spices and pickles...but I have not run across a blob soda with this giant "supersized" star embossing. Any thoughts? Thanks! DM

Friday, April 25, 2014

The Western Bitters News is FIVE years old today
Can you believe its been Five years?

"Weeding" Out Some Ebay Offerings

I don't know if you have noticed the growing trend on sites like ebay to offer bottles for sale with, I guess I would call it, "Lazy Photography"

The trend appears to stem from the areas that don't seem to have a lot of sunlight or an over abundance of, well, grass or weeds.

Take for instance the following picture.....
Here's a  really nice western fifth that looks like it is growing back hair.
Kind of hard to tell exactly how transparent this bottle really is
The  fifth pictured below is experiencing a bad case of clover buildup
and the clover, or weeds, are starting to creep to the front of the bottle
Here's an example of a southern California dose glass
that is sprouting out of someone's lawn. 
This poor Owl poison has been tossed aside and
landed on its top in this lawn. Interesting way to display your bottom.
Here's a nice teal colored soda
that also has some back hair issues - Wonder if this is contagious?
And here we have a perfect example of how to photograph a bottle to show it at its best. A little nature in the background to show off the unusual color of the bottle without over powering the subject with grass or weeds

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

From a Couple of Local Diggers

Hi Rick -
Here's some pictures of the USA Hospital bottle I dug and a western wine that Mike and I dug.

Thanks!! Chuck

Wow! beautiful bottles. I have always wanted to dig a USA Hospital but have never even dug a piece of one here in the gold country.
The western wine is almost as impressive as the early spring western sky.
Time to get your shovel in some earth before it turns to concrete again!
- rs - 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Paper Labeled Whiskies

Fantastic article by Bruce Silva on paper labeled western whiskies over at Western Whiskey Gazette

Take a look!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Sacramento Eagle

Here's a bottle that has always intrigued me. It has been, as long as I can remember, referred to as "The Sacramento Eagle."

The Sacramento Eagle
I think the reason it was dubbed the "Sacramento Eagle" is because most all of the known examples have been recovered from the Sacramento area. Way to early to have been manufactured in the west it is believed the Sac eagle dates from around circa 1852.

Eagle without slug plate

All of the examples I have encountered  have a graphite pontil and come with either the eagle in a slug plate or, as in the example above, with the embossed eagle without slug plate.

Eagle in slug plate
According to the Markota book on western blob top soda's the Sacramento Eagle is believed to be the predecessor to the C&K soda. Personally I have never found any information that can confirm or deny the contention that the eagle has any connection to the C&K soda.

Sac Eagle in a beautiful teal blue.
I have seen the Sacramento Eagle in shades of green and blue both with and without the eagle in a slug plate.
A recent ebay auction has a Sacramento eagle soda listed for sale in a "Beautiful Aqua color" It is not mentioned if the bottle is pontiled but the pictures show the eagle is not in a slugplate.

 Sacramento Eagle in aqua listed on ebay  
The Sacramento Eagle is considered scarce by western collectors and is a nice addition to a collection of early pontiled western distributed soda's
Happy Easter and thanks to American Bottle Auctions for some of the above images - rs -

Monday, April 14, 2014

From Jason Parker

Interesting post from Mr. Mlasko. Please find attached two images of my example of the same bottle found at the San Jose Bottle Club's 25th ? anniversary show held in Foster City back in the day.

The amber Western druggists bring some big bucks these days. I brought back *two bags* of bottles from that show. Contrast that to bringing back 2 or 3 bottles from today's shows.

1st listing for Jas. J. McDonnell
1876 SE 6th & Market
1877 SE 6th & Market and 1036 Market
1878 - 1887 SE 6th& Market
No listings thereafter

Thanks to Bruce Silva for supplying the advertisement documentation - rs -

Monday, April 7, 2014

Digging News

Just in from Cal49er:

  Here is a bottle one very lucky digger pulled out 10 days ago.   We had hiked up a canyon about 2 miles and were looking for sites.  Found a nice bowie knife, an opium pipe and on the way out decided to check a site with 30's trash visible.
,You know there were only so many flat spots to camp on.   Well out came a Lea and Perrins and we almost stopped digging. Next came a black,  another Lea and Perrins, a couple of Pierces Favorite Prescriptions and  another black.
Then an open pontiled med and next to it a variant 1 Lacours,  dead mint not a scratch in very light honey amber.  Last was a small 7 inch pickle.  I guess it's nice to be rewarded for persistence .  
Very happy campers that day!

I keep saying there is still a lot of good stuff to be found. If you put in the time and keep plugging along you will be rewarded. Yep, I like to hear about happy campers!
- rs -

Bottle Houses

Rhyolite Nevada
Tonopah Nevada
Rhyolite Nevada ?

Calico Ghost Town


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Western Bottles on ebay

Here are some of the more interesting western bottles up for auction on ebay.

H. Brickwedel tool top pint flask
Pretty rare milk glass German Balsam Bitters
 Grass Valley Deamer Soda w/ western curved "R's"
Super crude Hostetter's Bitters
Interesting gravitating soda from Eureka Cal.