Archived "Hutchinson Highlights"

Updated: December 1, 2013

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Posted: November 1, 2013


So much for October.  The old adage that "time flies when you're having fun" is definitely true.  Many days I don't know if I am delirious with happiness or brain-dead from spending so many hours in front of the PC.  Although I am rapidly closing in on completing 10 years of non-stop work on the Hutchinson Bottle Directory, this continues to be a very enjoyable and interesting project.  Like the other phases of this initiative, diving head-first into preparing and posting Hutchinson bottle images is proving to be far more time-consuming than we predicted.  Even so, it has also been more rewarding than expected to see the HutchBook database steadily fleshed out with images.  We are still focused on posting new photos, adding a minimum of 25 per day and when time permits adding 50+.

Early this week we passed the 1,600 hour mark for the number of hours invested into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory since January 1, 2013 and it appears we will finish the year somewhere north of 1,800 hours.  We have still missed only one daily HutchBook database update this year.

One task that continues to receive the least attention is HutchBook EMail.  Last week we whittled the total number of unread messages down to under 60, but an influx of Hutchinson bottle images has since driven the total to 150+, and several of those messages include multiple images.  Our thanks to those who are patiently awaiting responses.  It appears we won't make much headway in this area for the next couple of weeks.  By mid-November I hope to have closed the second estate I am executing, and Charles David Head's history of the Koca Nola Company will be at the print shop.  Speaking of Charles, he is the subject of this month's "Collector Profile."  His new book, A Head's Up On Koca Nola, will be available in December.  Watch for details and ordering information at and in weeks to come. 

During 2013 we have updated 5,058 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes cataloguing 597 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,868. 


Left to right: HT0005; IL0518; TN0130; VA0078

The beautiful Hutchinsons illustrated above are just four of the 1,000+ images added to the HutchBook database during October, boosting the grand total to over 3,500.  We are continuing to add new images on a daily basis. 

In addition to striving to keep up with new digital images from on-line auction sites and those submitted via EMail, we are steadily chewing thru the thousands of images stored during the past decade.  New York state is atypical of the process we are employing.  Doing a Hutchinson Search with New York as the state and 10-22-13 in the "Updates Since" field reveals we added 154 images of New York bottles in the past nine days.  The source of the bulk of these photos was our now exhausted digital file.  Next up we will go thru 10 years of New York-related EMail and ferret out the photos we have yet to post.  After that we will take a deep breath and tackle the six huge paper folders (half a file drawer's worth) containing New York bottle data, identify the useable hard copy images, and then scan and post them.  Lastly we will likely go back thru the paper files another time to scan and post pencil rubbings where that is the sole "image" currently available.  Our best guess (and it is indeed only a guess) at this point is that we have images of approximately half of the Hutchinsons catalogued in the HutchBook database.

Please help us continue to grow and improve the quantity and quality of data and images catalogued in the database!  If a bottle listing's Comment field indicates "(need better image)" and you can provide one, please do so.  If a bottle listing has an "unknown" data field entry and you have/known of an example of the bottle, please send us the missing data.  Thanks.



Left: Cover of The Remarkable T. L. Reber; Right: NM0056

Early this year we contributed some technical assistance to Bill Lockhart and Zang Wood, co-editors/co-authors of the latest contribution to our hobby's growing body of literature entitled The Remarkable T. L. Reber; Soda Bottles and Bottling in the Black Range and Silver City, New Mexico.  Bill and Zang are internationally known, highly respected collectors and researchers.  Those interested in soda bottles, particularly Hutchinsons, will find this new book of great interest.  They refer to Theodore L. Reber as "the Johnny Appleseed of Soda Bottlers," and after reading Reber's story, the description is spot on.  Navigate to's "Bottle Books For Sale" in the Collecting section for detailed information about the book's content and how you can add a copy of this fine new volume to your library:  

The Remarkable T. L. Reber


The July 2013 edition of Hutchinson Highlights mentioned Tod von Mechow had expanded to feature early glass manufacturer catalogues.  His initial posting was a very rare catalogue produced for the Diamond Glass Company of Royerford, Pennsylvania circa 1900-1905.  Such catalogues are veritable feasts for the eyes for those of us interested in the manufacturing of early soda bottles.  Imagine being a soda bottler 100+ years ago and thumbing thru such a catalogue in order to decide which style(s) of bottles to order!  Well, get ready for even more fun, because Tod has obtained, scanned, and recently made available several more wonderful catalogues, including these:

Here's a cropped and reduced size version of page 23 of the N.B.B.G.Co. catalogue:

Clicking on the image displays a full-sized view of the catalogue page.  Tod has also supplemented the bottle listings by detailing the embossed lettering and adding direct links to the details in his database listings.  Fantastic!

To view these great catalogues, go to and navigate to "Manufacturers" under "Bottle Attributes."  Then click on "Beer and Soda" and click the "Catalogues" link when it appears.  Check them out! 


We hope you didn't miss the warning we posted October 19, 2013 about the nuked "citron" Hutchinson listed on GreedyBay, especially if you were one of the eight bidders who placed 18 bids on a Common irradiated Hutchinson that ultimately sold for $101.99 + $9.00 P&H.  The "lucky winning bidder" has placed feedback stating "Prompt service, A-1 to deal with!" suggesting he/she doesn't have a clue the bottle has been nuked. 

The seller is the same one who sold the nuked "light amber" Jacksonville, Florida Hutchinson on GreedyBay in June, 2013.  (If you missed our July and August articles about that bottle, navigate to the Archived Hutchinson Highlights and click on the "Irradiated Glass" listings.)  Fortunately, that sale fell thru after the winning bidder received the "ugly, ugly bottle," recognized it had been irradiated, and luckily received a refund.  Here's the listing description for the "citron" bottle that just sold (GreedyBay #151145882446): 


c1890 " CITRON " COLORED PICTORIAL HUTCH embossed in slug pltae " THE STAR BOTTLING WORKS  SANDUSKY,O. " with a STAR in the center and also a STAR embossed on the Bottom.The Bottle is Near Mint with NO chips or cracks with a Nice Offset Neck.Bottle has Tooled Top,7 in. tall.Have a Blessed Day 

"Citron?"  "Near Mint?"  How can it be near mint when it has been irradiated, permanently altering the glass color?  The only ones who are having a "Blessed Day" are those wise enough not to bid or lucky enough to be outbid!  Check the OH0817 HutchBook listing to view an image of an example of this Common aqua Hutchinson that hasn't been nuked.

The auction quickly received 38 bids from four bidders, with the initial leader bidding no less than 34 times.  It then appears the leader either spotted our warning, or a friend tipped him/her off, as the 34 bids were retracted, leaving the listing showing four bids and dropping the price.  Ultimately another bidder also withdrew a bid before the auction closed.  Alas, the winning bidder probably paid five times what this bottle is (was) worth (before being permanently altered).   

Not only do we not understand why anyone would bid on this altered bottle, we are mystified as to why GreedyBay lets sellers knowingly defraud bidders by peddling altered glass.  Oh, wait, we forgot: IT'S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY!


Congratulations to the winning bidder who nabbed the example of AL0203.5, a HORN & TONSMEIRE / MOBILE, / ALA. Hutchinson that recently sold at auction as GreedyBay item #310775262879.  This Rare bottle quickly drew considerable bidding activity, with seven bidders placing a total of 22 bids in the first three days, driving the price up to $441.84.  Interestingly the auction closed with no further activity, probably much to the surprise of both the seller and the winning bidder. 



The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is Charles David Head.  Charles was one of the first collectors who responded to our request for input when we restarted the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative in 2004.  We quickly became good friends, and communicate frequently via snail mail, EMail, and telephone.  In addition to assisting Charles with his research, and building/managing, this year we have been working together to complete A Head's Up On Koca Nola, his soon-to-be-published book documenting the history of the Koca Nola Company.  Here's a link to Charles' profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Charles David Head


Like many other collectors, we spend considerable time searching on-line auction sites for Hutchinson bottles.  During the past 16 years we have reviewed many thousands of listings.  As the on-line auction sites have matured and sellers have gained more experience, the quality of listings has definitely improved.  Successful sellers are increasingly providing the information potential bidders/buyers are seeking, including better images and considerably more details to help collectors differentiate between variants.  Although the overall quality of listings is trending in the correct direction, there continue to be far too many postings that are very poorly done.  Unfortunately, many of the sellers left wondering why their bottles aren't selling aren't paying attention.  Within the past 15 minutes we sent an EMail message to a seller who just listed a Hutchinson as a "medicine," and at this point we think we have seen Hutchinsons classified as everything but "fruit jars."  Equally a problem are bottles listed as Hutchinsons that did not utilize Hutchinson's Patent Spring Stopper as closures.  Here are several current listings incorrectly described as "Hutch" or "Hutchinson" bottles:

Left to right the actual closures utilized were Matthews Gravitating Stopper, Baltimore Loop Seal, Putnam's Swing Stopper, and a Floating Ball Stopper.  While these all look to be nice bottles, they are not Hutchinsons.  So, what is a seller to do? 

How about checking the Hutchinson Bottle Sales Guide page posted in the Collecting section at where each of these (and other) closures frequently confused with Hutchinson stoppers is pictured and briefly described?  These closures are also illustrated and explained in detail in the extensive lists of Stopper Patents posted in's Industry History section. 


We have had little success at soliciting histories of individual bottlers thus far, so we are broadening the category to include glass manufacturers.  If we continue to receive limited input, we will drop this feature from future editions of Hutchinson Highlights.     

One of the most prolific manufacturers of Hutchinson bottles were the series of firms involving Dominic O'Connor Cunningham of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Hutchinsons manufactured by Cunningham are found with maker's marks C & I, C. & Co., C. & CO. LIM., and D.O.C.  A search of the HutchBook database indicates we have catalogued over 1,000 Hutchinson bottles manufactured by Cunningham.  Brief histories of the Cunningham glass plants are posted at Tod von Mechow's and David Whitten's  While perusing our file on Pittsburgh bottlers, we happened upon an interesting 1889 article providing additional insight into this firm's history.  Here's a link to the article:

Posted: October 1, 2013


"30 days hath September" is readily apparent when reviewing a month with too few days and too many tasks on the to-do list.  Today we passed the 1,450 hour mark for the number of hours invested into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory since January 1, 2013 and we are definitely en route to a record setting year.  We have still missed only one daily HutchBook database update this year.

My six week battle with shingles appears to be ending, thank goodness.  The pain caused by the blisters and nerve endings was the pits, but fortunately it only put a small dent into my fall marathon training.  Between the shingles and record-setting rain storms rolling thru Western Washington during September, I was again able to devote more hours than planned to updating and adding bottle images to the HutchBook database.  We have thousands of images to process and appreciate those of you who are patiently waiting until the images from your particular area(s) of collecting interest are posted. 

As a mental break from sitting in front of the PC, we enjoyed a day trip to Aurora, Oregon to attend the Oregon Bottle Collectors Association's fall sale.  Long-time bottle collector buddy Mark Edward Nelson from Kirkland, Washington joined us for the trip.  After 50+ years of collecting, it is increasingly difficult to find new items for the collection, but much to my surprise I returned home with a long-sought-after LaGrande, Oregon Hutchinson (OR0022), and a beautiful, honey amber Portland, Oregon siphon.  That same weekend saw GreedyBay produce not one, but two new Portland, Oregon Hutchinson variants (OR0049.5 and OR0052.5) which are now sitting on one of my bottle room shelves. 

During September's "spare time" I closed one estate and initiated closing a second one.  Another high priority for October is finalizing Charles David Head's history of the Koca Nola Company for delivery to the printer so that copies are available in time for the Christmas season.  Charles will be the subject of the November 1, 2013 Hutchinson Highlights' "Collector Profile," and his book, A Head's Up On Koca Nola, is scheduled to be available by December 1, 2013.  Additional details and ordering information for Charles' book will be posted at and in weeks to come. 

Speaking of new bottle books, the much-anticipated New Mexico bottle book co-authored by Bill Lockhart and Zang Wood is expected to arrive shortly.  Details and ordering information will be posted at as soon as possible, and the book will be featured in an upcoming edition of Hutchinson Highlights.

Sadly, September brought word of the passing of well-known collector Tommy Mitchiner, our long-time Georgia Hutchinson Specialist.  Although I never had the privilege of meeting Tommy in person, we had considerable contact via EMail, snail mail, and the phone over the years.  Tommy was "the man" when it came to Georgia Hutchinsons.  Bill Baab is preparing a tribute to Tommy scheduled for publication in the November, 2013 issue of Antique Bottle & Glass Collector magazine.  Rest in peace, Tommy.

During 2013 we have updated 4,521 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 559 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,830. 


Left to right: IN0321; PA1082; PA2371; PA2733

Whew, color September busy!  Inspired by the word "color," we opted to highlight four of the nicer colored Hutchinson images we posted this month.  Left to right, the colors represented are cobalt blue, cornflower blue, amber, and apple green. 

At the end of August we had added 1,330 Hutchinson bottle images to the HutchBook database.  As September ends, another 1,000+ images have been posted and the grand total has grown to 2,450.  Although October is shaping up to be another unusually busy month, we will continue to post new images on a daily basis. 

Adding images to the database has definitely increased interest in the initiative.  After almost ten years of non-stop work on this project, we are experiencing a significant surge in inquiries and offers to help, with an ever-increasing number of collectors contributing bottle images and data.  Just now I switched over to check EMail and discovered three messages received within the past hour offering and/or including wonderful images of Hutchinson bottles.  I love it!  If you can help us continue to grow and improve the quantity and quality of data and images catalogued in the database, please do so!

An interesting side effect of adding so many images to the HutchBook database has been an improvement in the quality of photographs being submitted.  Our sincere thanks to those noting listing Comments such as "black-and-white" and/or "need better image," and then taking the time to submit higher quality photos.  We have already upgraded numerous images and hope this trend continues.

We have also been entertaining numerous inquiries concerning our photo guidelines.  We aren't professional photographers and doubt that many Hutchinson collectors are either.  Our basic guidelines are very simple: we prefer sharply focused, full frontal images that clearly show the entire bottle, with as plain a background as possible.  Beyond this, we asked two experienced Hutchinson collectors who consistently produce better-than-average images for suggestions on improving the quality of bottle photos.  Here is what two of them had to say:

From Chris Jordan in Indiana:

I started out with an HP camera outside and had some real nice pictures but winter made it a hassle, so I set up a small area near the computer where I can do everything as smoothly as possible.  I have the room light on when I take photos, daylight or not, and use an autofocus feature on a cheap Kodak digital camera I bought just for bottle pictures.  The base I use is a tiny oak table and my background is just window drapes in a light color to contrast with the bottle.

And from Jim Eifler in New Jersey:

Find a window that gets good early morning or late day sunlight, preferably one without any trees or any other obstructions in the background.  Blue sky or even cloudy sky is best for the background.  I like early morning or setting sun for the best results (try different times for the best results for you).  I remove the window screen because it takes away from the picture of the glass and place the bottle on the window sill, making sure there's no chance for it to fall or be knocked over.

If there are items in the background (trees, wires, houses, mountains) take the picture from below at an angle to give you as much of the sky for background as possible without losing the perspective you want to take.  If the back of the bottle is also embossed, turn it around and take a picture of the back as well, then marry the photos using whatever photo editing program you have on your computer.

If you have bottle photography hints or suggestions to share, please send them to  Thanks.


Instead of featuring a different collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights, we opted to supplement Joe Hagedorn's existing profile.  We weren't planning to post a sequel, but couldn't resist when we happened upon information that was just too good not to share with readers.  Here is a link to Joe's profile, including the newly-discovered material, so keep reading; we think you're going to enjoy this:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Joe Hagedorn

HUTCHINSON FLAVORS: Celery=Cola, Ginger Ale, Root Beer, and Orange

Left to right: AL0015; FL0076; IN0331; MA0111.5

One of the Hutchinson Bottle Directory search engine choices is the "Category" field featuring over 20 areas of special interest to collectors.  When cataloguing bottles we flag the listings for brand names such as Coca-Cola, Koca Nola, and Pepsi-Cola, major collecting categories like picture Hutchinsons and bottles with embossing errors, and different types of contents, e.g. soda water, mineral water, ginger ale, and flavors.  The illustrated examples include Celery=Cola, Ginger Ale, Root Beer, and Orange.  Orange?  Yes, orange!  MA0111.5 is a newly-catalogued Hutchinson from Stoneham, Massachusetts boldly embossed "ORANGE" to identify the flavor of the contents.  This is the only Hutchinson we have seen embossed "ORANGE" to represent a flavor.  It is also the only Hutchinson we have catalogued from Stoneham, MA, leaving one to wonder if the bottler, R. B. CHAPMAN, only produced orange soda, or perhaps also utilized other Hutchinsons with a variety of flavor names.  What a crazy hobby this is!


Left to right: OR0049.5; OR0050; OR0051; OR0052.5 

Opening the HutchBook database to the public combined with the on-going posting of bottle images has had the satisfying (and expected) effect of attracting new users to the site.  As a result, we are receiving an increased number of inquiries asking how we are  defining "variant" when cataloguing bottles for the HutchBook database.  The answers are presented in the Bottle Directory section, immediately below the link to the Hutchinson Search engine.  Here's a link to the page defining variants:

Hutchinson Variants

Employing the definitions as described on the Hutchinson Variants page, hopefully users can see and understand the differences between the Hutchinson bottles illustrated above.  These bottles are four of the seven known Hutchinsons utilized by Pioneer Soda Works in Portland, Oregon.  Reviewing the images and database descriptions, the differences include:

OR0049.5 = GB initials, 4 S B & G Co maker's mark

OR0050 = GB initials, small anchor, much smaller embossing pattern

OR0051 = MD initials, bent bar anchor, Mc & D on base

OR0052.5 = MD initials, blank base

The definition of "variants" has been both controversial and misunderstood during the entire course of developing the Hutchinson Bottle Directory.  We have posted comments on this topic frequently and apparently will need to continue to do so as long as collectors have differing opinions.  Variants is a subjects where we are going to have to agree to disagree for sanity's sake, as there is no "right" or "wrong" definition.  The definition employed for HutchBook cataloguing purposes was developed and refined in order to establish guidelines that are broad enough to include major bottle characteristics, yet restricted enough that building the HutchBook database wasn't an impossible challenge.  Our intention is not to dictate to anyone how or what they should collect!  If you choose to differentiate between top styles (applied, tooled, funnel, etc.), shoulder and bottom shapes (round, semi-round, flat, etc.), various shades of aqua, etc., by all means, go for it!  We chose not to break out these categories for the HutchBook definition of "variant" lest the database blossom from rapidly approaching 18,000 listings to 50,000+. 


We are very pleased to have an opportunity to present the accompanying history of James Esposito authored by Charles David Head.  Charles is a long-time bottle collector, an award-winning and frequent contributor of research articles to the FOHBC's Bottles & Extras bi-monthly journal and Antique Bottle & Glass Collector magazine, and an authority on the history of the Koca Nola Company.  Here's a link to Charles' article:

James Esposito - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Updated: September 1, 2013


Left to right: CT0020.2; MA0056.5; NJ0171.5; and PA2032.5 

Question: What do the four Hutchinson bottles pictured above have in common? (Hint: this is the same question we asked last month, but the answer is different.)

Answer: These four images were added to the HutchBook database during August, and they are four of the 67 new Hutchinsons catalogued and illustrated during August, 2013.  During the month we updated the database and posted new images daily.  At month's end the grand total number of images has grown to 1,330 and will continue to steadily increase in months to come.    

Although identifying, cropping, compressing, indexing, and uploading individual bottle images is a very detailed and time consuming process, we are gaining proficiency.  The images posted above are better than some of the photos we receive, as many have cluttered and distracting backgrounds, are totally out of focus, etc.  Even so, please keep sending photos!  In addition to posting new images, we are also replacing poor quality, and black-and-white photos whenever possible.  We have asked one of our Hutchinson Specialists who takes excellent photographs to put together a short article providing us all with some pointers on producing better Hutchinson bottle images. 

Initially we are working our way thru three different types of files - straight digital images, photos submitted via EMail messages, and hard copy images that require scanning.   From the time this project was started in 1976 until we decided to publish via rather than paper, we focused on obtaining pencil rubbings of embossings.  Switching to a web site combined with the advent of EMail and digital photography has caused us to re-think our plans to create computer-assisted bottle drawings.  Consequently, our preference now is to receive and post digital images.  Once we have waded thru the thousands of digital, EMail, and hard copy images we have stored, we intend to go thru the files again and if our sole image is a pencil rubbing, we will scan and post those until such time that they can be replaced with digital images. 

Please utilize the Hutchinson Search engine's "New Listings Since" or "Updates Since" fields to check for newly posted images.  Also select a specific state or country to zero in on your particular area(s) of interest.


August was another banner month for HutchBook progress.  This coming week we will pass the 1,300 hour mark for the number of hours invested into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory since January 1, 2013.  We have still only missed one daily HutchBook database update all year long.

The number of August hours devoted to updating the database and adding images far exceeded our plans partially due to spending the past two weeks battling a nasty case of shingles.  I knew nothing about shingles until this episode, but have quickly become an evangelist for doing everything possible to avoid getting them.  If you had chickenpox as a child, the virus never leaves your body and as a result, 50% of us experience shingles later in life.  Although a shingles inoculation is not a guarantee you won't eventually get them, improve your odds and get the shot.  Believe me, you do not want shingles! 

September's planning calendar includes a steady increase in my running mileage, getting Charles David Head's history of the Koca Nola Company ready for the printer, updating the HutchBook database daily, and, of course, adding as many more images as we can.

During 2013 we have updated 3,779 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 527 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,800.  Sure enough, we are slowly sneaking up on 18,000! 


The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is Joe Hagedorn, another long-time, major contributor to the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative.  When Joe isn't focused on adding to what is certainly one of the largest and best Hutchinson collections on the continent, he busies himself as an acclaimed classical guitarist, one of the founders of the internationally renowned Minneapolis Guitar Quartet, and a member of the music faculty at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.  Joe's passion for Hutchinson collecting clearly shows in his accompanying Hutchinson Collector Profile: 

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Joe Hagedorn

Note: If you know of individuals you think would be interesting subjects for future Hutchinson Collector Profiles, please send your suggestions to


Great news arrived this month when the mail brought a copy of the newly revised edition of Zang Wood's fine contribution to our hobby's body of literature, North To Alaska: Bottles Of The Gold Rush.  Zang has done extensive research on Hutchinsons, siphons, and mineral water bottles from Alaska, Yukon Territory, and Northwest Territories.  We are aware of no other books that specifically focus on Alaska, YT, and NWT bottles.

Originally published in 2002 in a limited edition of 100 copies, Zang has added a considerable amount of new information and photos to this revised edition.  Only 50 copies have been printed, so we encourage you to order a copy quickly before the book is once again out of print. 

Here's a link to the additional details and ordering information included in's "Bottle Books For Sale" listings:

North To Alaska: Bottles Of The Gold Rush

AK0005 image courtesy of Zang Wood


Although the HutchBook "Contact Us" page states "We are not a source of historical information about specific bottlers," our files contain a substantial amount of material concerning bottlers and bottling plants.  After founding this project in 1976, Joe Nagy solicited state Hutchinson histories, a move that opened the flood gates and in short order he started receiving articles about individual bottlers.  Clearly it was the authors' hope that Joe would include this material in his planned book, particularly for geographical areas where there were no existing bottle books.  When we re-started this initiative in 2004 it quickly became obvious that in order to keep the project's scope manageable, such historical material belonged in individual bottle books, rather than being incorporated into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory.  Although we still believe strongly that this is the correct approach, we added this "Featured Bottler" section to each edition of Hutchinson Highlights in order to emphasize that while collecting Hutchinson Bottles is enjoyable, learning about the bottlers who utilized Hutchinson bottles adds "meat" to the bare bones.  All to say that while recently preparing to add some Oklahoma Territory bottle images to the database we ran across the accompanying article submitted to Joe Nagy 35 years ago and decided it is long past time it was read by others.  Here's the article, along with some introductory material about Chandler, Oklahoma from

Featured Bottler: G. W. Schlegel, Chandler, Oklahoma Territory

Posted: August 1, 2013


Left to right: MA0070; NH0002; NWT0004; OR0043 

Question: What do the four Hutchinson bottles pictured above have in common?

Answer: All four of these photographs were recently added to the HutchBook database!  Yes, Phase III is underway again and we are attaching more bottle images.  The process of preparing, indexing, and uploading each individual bottle image is involved and time consuming, but we have now begun the process of methodically adding photos.  Our proficiency is slowly and steadily improving, but Phase II looks like it will be a long, slow endeavor given the thousands of images we need to process.     

To check out a sampling of the latest additions, use the Hutchinson Search engine and review the listings for Oregon, Arizona Territory, Dakota Territory, Montana Territory, Utah Territory, Washington Territory, Wyoming Territory, Yukon, Prince Edward Island, Manitoba, Alberta, Nevada, Mexico, and Massachusetts.

Please utilize the Hutchinson Search engine's "New Listings Since" or "Updates Since" fields to check for newly posted images.     


July delivered a platter full of extra-curricular activities, including yard work, estate duties, fine-tuning Charles David Head's history of the Koca Nola Company, family and school reunions, and haying season.  Yesterday we stacked the last of this year's bales, marking the 150th consecutive year hay has been stored in the family's barn built in 1864.  In spite of a multitude of non-HutchBook activities, we are very pleased to say this has been our most productive HutchBook month of the year thus far.  For sure the month's highlight has been lighting a new fire under Phase III, the addition of images to the HutchBook database.  We will soon have invested over 1,100 hours into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory since January 1, 2013 and we've still only missed one daily HutchBook database update this year.

August's calendar includes more family gatherings, involvement with several car shows, and ramping up my weekly running mileage prior to the start of the fall marathon season.  HutchBook priorities for August will be a repeat of July - update the database daily, and keep adding more images. 

During 2013 we have updated 2,976 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 459 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,735. 


The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is David Gilson, one of our numerous Pennsylvania Hutchinson Specialists (his focus is Pittsburg), a frequent seller of Hutchinsons on GreedyBay, and a major contributor to the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative.  Check out David's Hutchinson Collector Profile and you will likely recognize factors motivating you and/or other collectors you know.  Here's a link to David's profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: David Gilson


Our early interest in Moxie was fueled by a  short article published in the July-August, 1970 issue of the long-defunct The Western Collector magazine.  Author Bill Gaylord wrote:

To a Californian over 40, the name Moxie sounds like the female character in a 1920s novel about New York.  It conjures images of big, powerful cars driven by dashing, dark-eyed guys whose dolls knew all the right answers.  Moxie was know-how.  Moxie was courage.  Moxie was daring. 

Younger generations knew Moxie as the mysterious gimmick of Mad Magazine, which set out in the 1960s to "make Moxie a household word once more."

But to Easterners, young and old alike, Moxie is a grand old name, one of the oldest in the soft drink business.  Moxie has been in continuous production since 1884, when George Archer organized the company to make Moxie Nerve Food in Boston Massachusetts. 

Discovery of that article led to acquisition of The Moxie Mystique: The Word, The Drink, The Collectibles (1981) and The Book of Moxie (1987), both by Frank N. Potter, and The Moxie Encyclopedia, Volume I, The History (1985) by Q. David Bowers.  The Moxie section of our bottle book library will soon grow with the acquisition of a 2012 publication.

Our plan to publish a feature on Moxie for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights was scooped by the overview Ferd Meyer posted July 26, 2013.  Here's a link to his article:

We'll close with this abbreviated overview with a photo of Dave Waris' Moxie display at the July 19-21, 2013 FOHBC National Antique Bottle Show in Manchester, New Hampshire:

Moxie display by Dave Waris at 2013 FOHBC National Antique Bottle Show.  Note the two Hutchinson bottles on the lower shelf, far right.  The quart is MA0044 (see accompanying close-up image above), and the pint is MA0042.  Both images courtesy of Tod von Mechow. 


Tod von Mechow continues the expansion of with the addition of a new feature documenting catalogues published for early glass manufacturers.  In addition to posting images of original catalogue pages, Tod is focusing on identifying specific molds and the bottles blown in them.  Wherever possible (some of the early images are very challenging to decipher), he is adding the front and maker's mark embossing detail, plus the associated catalogue plate mould numbers.

Tod's initial posting is a circa 1900-1905 catalogue produced for the Diamond Glass Company of Royersford, Pennsylvania.  Navigate to this portion of by clicking on Bottle Attributes - Manufacturers - Catalogues.  Here's an example of one of the many pages that have been posted:

Clicking on the images produces a full-sized version of catalogue pages.  This is a terrific resource for those of us interested in early soda bottle manufacturers.  Great work, Tod!


One of the most frequently repeated Hutchinson myths is the yarn that the Pure Food and Drugs Act of 1906 legislated an end to the usage of Hutchinson bottles.  This myth is further routinely embellished to claim the Act specifically banned "lead" Hutchinson Patent Spring Stoppers (hint: the stoppers are not lead, they are brass coated with block tin).  These myths are absolutely, positively NOT true!  Preach as we may, uninformed people continue to access outdated and inaccurate sources of information and spread such stories.  If you believe either of these often-repeated myths, please make time to read and comprehend the contents of the Act, the complete text of which is readily available on-line.  If reading the entire Act sounds like too much trouble, here's a "Cliff Notes" overview from Wikipedia:

The Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906 was a key piece of Progressive Era legislation...The first federal law regulating foods and drugs, the 1906 Act's reach was limited to foods and drugs moving in interstate commerce.  Although the law drew upon many precedents, provisions, and legal experiments pioneered in individual states, the federal law defined "misbranding" and "adulteration" for the first time and prescribed penalties for each...The law was principally a "truth in labeling" law designed to raise standards in the food and drug industries and protect the reputations and pocketbooks of honest businessmen.  Under the law, drug labels, for example, had to list any of 10 ingredients that were deemed "dangerous" on the product label if they were present and could not list them if they were not present.  Alcohol, morphine and opium, and cannabis were all included on the list of "dangerous" drugs.  The law also established a federal cadre of food and drug inspectors that one Southern opponent of the legislation criticized as "a Trojan horse with a bellyful of inspectors."  Penalties under the law were modest, but an under-appreciated provision of the Act proved more powerful than monetary penalties.  Goods found in violation of the law were subject to seizure and destruction at the expense of the manufacturer.  That, combined with a legal requirement that all convictions be published (Notices of Judgment), proved to be important tools in the enforcement of the statute and had a deterrent effect upon would-be violators...

It took 27 years to pass the 1906 statute, during which time the public was made aware of many problems with foods and drugs in the U.S.  Muckraking journalists...targeted the patent medicine industry with its high-alcoholic content patent medicines, soothing syrups for infants with opium derivatives, and "red clauses" in newspaper contracts providing that patent medicine ads (upon which most newspapers of the time were dependent) would be withdrawn if the paper expressed support for food and drug regulatory legislation.

The Pure Food and Drugs Act of 1906 impacted the bottling of all types of products, including the utilization of Hutchinsons for bottling soda.  Soda bottlers complied with the Act by affixing paper labels identifying the contents and capacity.  For a discussion of facts that led to the end of the line for Hutchinson bottles, check out the Demise of the Hutchinson Era article posted at


We continue to receive questions and comments concerning the definition of "variant" being utilized for the Hutchinson Bottle Directory.  Some collectors don't agree with our approach, of course, and that is perfectly okay.  Everyone is entitled to collect any which way they want to!  The guidelines we are employing are explained in detail on the Hutchinson Variants page.  If you haven't (ever or recently) read the guidelines, click on the link to review them in order to better understand the HutchBook database listings.  Now, check out the following images from three current on-line auctions and see if you understand why these three Hutchinsons were catalogued as different variants:

  Left to right: IL1038; IL1039; IL1040 (full data is posted at

IL1038 = aqua, private mould, maker's mark D.O.C. 113

IL1039 = aqua, horseshoe plate mould, maker's mark D.O.C. 6

IL1040 = clear, horseshoe plate mould, maker's mark D.O.C. 6  

The same seller listed IL1038 and IL1039.  His description of IL1038 notes the glass is "a little Richer Aqua colored than the first version (IL1039)," but he was silent on the difference in mould styles and maker's marks.  There are other differences too, for example the size and spacing of the embossed lettering.  Clearly these bottles were blown in two totally different moulds.  IL1039 and IL1040 were blown in the same mold and are identical but for the glass color.


The EAGLE BOTTLING WORKS / TRADE (eagle) MARK / TACOMA WASHINGTON Hutchinson (WA0121) we have followed the last two months finally has a new owner!  This is the bottle first listed with an asking price of $3,000.  With the price steadily reduced to "$37.50 or Best Offer," someone finally placed an offer the seller accepted.  GreedyBay masked the buyer's ID and the closing price, so all we can figure out is the buyer focuses on collecting North Baltimore, Ohio-area items, apparently attracted to this Hutchinson because it was manufactured by the North Baltimore Bottle Glass Company (evidence the N.B.B.G.CO. maker's mark).


The previous edition of Hutchinson Highlights included a short feature about the auction of a Common FL0074 that had been irradiated, turning the aqua glass a sickly brownish color (the article is indexed in the Archived Hutchinson Highlights as "Irradiated Glass: Nuked Bottles Fool Some Of The People All Of The Time").  The bottle drew 17 bids and sold for just over $240 including P&H.  It turns out the winning bidder was a Hutchinson collector we have known for many years.  When the bottle arrived in the mail, his spouse took one look and accurately described the newly acquired specimen as an "ugly, ugly bottle."  In short order the buyer contacted the seller and returned the bottle for a refund.  Rumor has it the bottle was subsequently sold to an under bidder.  Meanwhile, the seller's current auction listings include numerous nuked bottles and other glass items described as "lite amber," "lite yellow amber," and "deep purple-amethyst," while the spineless GreedyBay powers-that-be continue to do nothing to protect buyers from such obvious fraudulent offerings. 


This edition's featured bottler was a very short-lived firm that utilized a Rare Hutchinson bottle with a picture of a spouting spring.  Click the following link for details:

Featured Bottler: Pullman Bottling Works - Spokane, Washington

Posted: July 1, 2013


Left to right: PA1775; PA1781; PA1771; PA1778; PA1780; PA1777 

This week's Fourth of July celebration inspired repeating the above image of R. J. Brown's incredible collection of Hutchinsons picturing U.S. flags.  These beautiful bottles were commissioned by long-time Philadelphia bottler James Esposito, an Italian immigrant who was truly "Proud To Be An American."  If you aren't familiar with James Esposito's story, check out Charles David Head's article posted at  Navigate to the "Koca Nola History" page, click on the quick-link to "Confirmed Koca Nola Franchises," scroll down to the listing for Pennsylvania, and click on "Proud To Be An American."  This story is a good reminder of why so many of our ancestors left their homelands for America, the land of opportunity.     


Wow, it is already July.  The first six months of 2013 have been an incredibly productive time period for the HutchBook initiative.  We have invested well over 900 hours into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory since January 1, 2013.  In addition to cataloguing Hutchinson images, we have missed only one daily HutchBook database update so far this year. has evolved into the "living book" we envisioned when we made the major decision to publish to a web site instead of paper.  We definitely made the right choice!

Although we are pleased with 2013's rate of HutchBook progress, it is frustrating to not yet be attaching more Hutchinson images to the database.  Sometimes day-to-day living just gets in the way.  The recent passing of my 92 year old father-in-law finds me now doing double estate executor duties, as my Dad's estate has yet to close.  Meanwhile, Charles David Head and I continue to make solid progress on his Koca Nola history and are still on track to have his book in print this fall.  And while my body is enjoying a summer break from six springtime marathons, our never-ending rains have finally let up, and we will soon be throwing hay bales again.  In spite of such real world time intrusions, the HutchBook project continues to be my highest priority. 

During the first six months of 2013 we have updated 2,655 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 414 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,692.


Higher priorities trumped our good intentions in June and we have yet to resume adding Hutchinson images to the database.  We are hoping to finally have at it during July.  A Home page announcement will be posted when the process starts again.  Meanwhile, here are a dozen Hutchinson images we acquired during June.  Additional information about each bottle is posted in the Bottle Directory.  Key the referenced HutchBook number into the "Bottle Number" field and click the "Find Hutchinsons" button for details.

Left to right: AL0055; AT0002; AR0098; CT0139.5

Left to right: DE0086; GA0158; LA0067; MN0122

Left to right: NJ0123; NY1133; ON0180.5: PA1363.5


The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is Brandon DeWolfe, a long-time contributor to the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative, and our New Hampshire Hutchinson Specialist.  Check out Brandon's Hutchinson Collector Profile and you will likely recognize factors that also motivate you and/or other collectors you know.  Here's a link to his profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Brandon DeWolfe


In mid-June we spotted the illustrated Hutchinson bottle listed on GreedyBay by a seller whose description read:

"RARE !! c1890 LITE AMBER HUTCH SODA embossed on the front " KORNAHRENS & WEDDING JACKSONVILLE,FLA. " and embossed on the back " THIS BOTTLE NOT TO BE SOLD".The Bottle has some stain and wear and bout a 1/4 in. chip on the bottom edge.There is also a small fisheye about 1/8 in. on the bottom with no glass missing.No other chips or cracks.Hand finished lip,6 5/8 in. tall. Good Luck !!"

Hmmm.  A "RARE !!" colored Hutchinson at an opening price of only $ .99?  What is wrong with this picture?  For starters, this bottle is FL0074, a Common (100+ known) Hutchinson found only in aqua.  Instead of the glass being what the seller described as "LITE AMBER," it is actually the sickly brownish color that sometimes results when an aqua bottle containing traces of manganese is irradiated.  This is not a rare colored Hutchinson; it is a Common bottle that has been nuked.  We don't know whether or not the seller was aware the bottle has been nuked.  If he knew, the listing should have included that information.  We suspect the seller knew and "forgot" to mention it, or knowingly chose to remain silent.  His feedback includes numerous "purple" glass items he has sold previously.  Once again it's all about the money...

As the week-long auction progressed we watched in dismay as the bottle continually received bids.  The auction ultimately drew 17 bids from eight different individuals, and closed at $231.38 + $9.00 P&H.  Given how Common this bottle is and the damage it has sustained, the shipping charge likely exceeds the bottle's true worth. 

We continue to be mystified by buyer acceptance of blatant frauds.  Are they naive?  Are they gullible?  Are they uninformed?  Are they not doing their homework?  Are they overly excited at the prospect of getting something that is "too good to be true?"  In spite of HutchBook's "Caveat Emptor" page warnings, informational guidelines posted at on-line auction sites, and educational articles about irradiated glass published in hobby-related periodicals, people continue to buy these altered items.  If any of our readers were sucked into bidding on this particular bottle, we are curious to know how and why it happened.  There must be additional ways to better communicate the need to help put an end to such fraudulent activity.  Those individuals who claim irradiation simply "speeds up" an otherwise natural, evolutionary process need to admit they are in it for the money and stop permanently altering historical artifacts!

NORTH AMERICAN GLASS AUCTIONS (if you only shop GreedyBay for Hutchinsons, you are really missing out!)

For several years we have regularly enjoyed following Greg Spurgeon's "North American Glass" on-line auctions.  Greg primarily focuses on beautiful and often very rare fruit jars, but periodically he also offers bottles in other categories, including Hutchinsons.  His most recent auction that closed June 6, 2013 included several beautiful colored and rare Hutchinsons.  Here are some of Greg's highly professional images, along with their HutchBook database bottle numbers, the number of bids place, and the closing price for each illustrated bottle.  Warning: you may want to have a towel handy in the event of uncontrollable drooling!

WI0368: North American Glass #5350 - 3 bids, $70.00

NJ0492: North American Glass #5351 - 1 bid, $20.00

NM0060: North American Glass #5353 - 23 bids, $230.00

DC0081: North American Glass #5354 - 13 bids, $126.00


RI0010: North American Glass #5355 - 35 bids, $3,100.00

IA0041: North American Glass #5356 - 14 bids, $209.00

MO0061: North American Glass #5357 - 15 bids, $90.00

 NE0097: North American Glass #5358 - 16 bids, $200.00

Don't miss out on Greg's future auctions!  Visit and register (for free) to be on the EMailing list for notifications concerning upcoming auctions.


Our thanks to those collectors who alerted us to the GreedyBay listing of a nice example of KY0069: CITIZENS' CHEMICAL / E. G. RICHTER / LOUISVILLE, KY / FIRE EXTINGUISHER Hutchinson.  There was considerable interest in the bottle.  It drew 15 bids from 10 bidders and sold for $147.50.   

This is the second example we have seen of this very interesting bottle.  We spotted the first (and until now, only) specimen on a sales table at the 2008 FOHBC Expo in York, PA.  That bottle left town to join the extensive Hutchinson collection of HBCA Hall of Fame charter member Bob Harms of Glenwood, Illinois.  We obtained the illustrated pencil rubbing from Bob's bottle at the Expo.

The "CITIZENS' CHEMICAL FIRE EXTINGUISHER" embossing, of course, begs the question of exactly why this bottle was produced and how it was utilized.

Theories abound on the bottle possibly containing some sort of fire retardant chemical, such as carbon tetrachloride, and sold to customers to use in the event of a fire.  While that is possible, the fire had better have been consuming a brick wall, as one would have to throw it hard against such a wall just to break the bottle.  Fire grenades were typically of very thin glass designed to break when thrown at a fire, with the resultant spread of carbon tet shutting off the supply of oxygen, smothering and extinguishing the fire.  It is also possible the bottle was part of some sort of larger fire extinguishing apparatus.  Whatever the bottle contained, why would the manufacturer choose/need to house the contents in a container specifically designed for carbonated beverages? 

A simpler possibility is the bottle was actually produced for bottling soda and mineral water.  Perhaps E. G. Richter of the Citizens' Chemical Fire Extinguisher (Company?) decided to enter the soft drink business.  Remember, the vast majority of embossing on Hutchinson bottles was not intended as advertising.  The primary purpose for embossing was to indicate ownership of the bottle.  There are several examples of ice and coal companies, light and water works, laundry companies, druggists, et al having their firm's names embossed on Hutchinsons, so why not a chemical company? 

Bottom line, this bottle is a mystery that needs to be solved!  After the 2008 FOHBC Expo we made an unsuccessful try at getting someone to research E. G. Richter in Louisville.  The circa 1902 Louisville City Directory may hold the answer(s).  Help!


This past week we watched GreedyBay item # 111105479096, an auction for a maverick Hutchinson embossed HELENA / SODA WATER CO.  The auction closed last night with nine bids from three bidders at $61.00.  Thanks to input from Texas Hutchinson collector specialists, we have this maverick catalogued as TX0372, attributing the bottle's origin to the ghost town of Helena, Texas. 

So, you haven't heard of Helena, Texas?  Well, neither had we, so we turned to Wikipedia and discovered the following interesting (but undocumented) information:

Helena is a ghost in Texas located approximately 70 mi (110 km) southeast of San Antonio in Karnes County.  The seat of Karnes County from 1854 to 1894, Helena was once known as the self-proclaimed "toughest town on earth" in the mid-19th century.  It was named for the second wife of Lewis Owings, Helen Marr Swisher (1831–1910).

The town was the birthplace of the so-called "Helena Duel," in which the left hands of two opponents are tied together with buckskin and each fighter is given a knife with a three-inch blade - too short to reach a vital organ or cause a single fatal stab.  After the combatants are whirled around a few times, they slash away at each other until one bleeds to death from the accumulation of cuts and stabs.  Crowds of spectators would view this gory, gruesome spectacle and even bet on the outcome.

Helena is now a ghost town, allegedly due to the vendetta of one Colonel William G. Butler (1831–1912) against the town he blamed for the death of his son, Emmett.  On December 26, 1884, Emmett Butler was killed by a stray bullet from a bar fight.  A few days later, Colonel Butler went to Helena with group of cowhands and demanded to know who had shot his son and found that nobody in town was willing to tell the truth about the incident.  Enraged, Colonel Butler reportedly shouted: "All right! For that I'll kill the town that killed my son!"  Following through on his threat, Butler, a veteran of the American Civil War and a wealthy rancher, arranged for the tracks of the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railway to be built 7 mi (11 km) away from Helena.  Then, in a bitterly contested election in 1894 the county seat was moved from Helena to Karnes City and the town quickly died.


We have seen examples of positive feedback indicating at least some of the big bucks transactions in May were successfully consummated.  One GreedyBay seller, however, added a listing warning others "'COCA-COLA SHEIKH' * A DEADBEAT * DOES NOT PAY - EBAY DOES NOTHING TO HELP."  We have also seen both very positive and very negative comments posted at on-line botttle-related discussion forums.  However it shakes out, it appears the GreedyBay feeding frenzy for high-priced Hutchinsons is fading away.  While there are still some pricey Hutchinsons being offered, the number being listed has returned to normal.  Here are four listings we've been/are currently watching:

Left to right: RI0004; AL0188; FL0043; WA0121 

RI0004 - This very nice, Rare example of a McMANUS & MEADE / BOTTLERS / NASONVILLE / R. I. / REGISTERED was listed for $1,200.00  We were surprised to see it draw only three bids and close for $1,250.00.  In our opinion this one was wisely snapped up at a bargain price by one of our long-time Hutchinson Specialists. 

AL0188 - Listed only briefly, the auction for this JASPER / Coca-Cola / BOTTLING CO. / JASPER, ALA. was cancelled by the seller.  The starting bid price was $3,500.00 with a $4,800 Buy-It-Now price.  We hadn't seen one of these since 1976. 

FL0043 - FLORIDA / KOCA NOLA / BOTTLING CO. Hutchinsons are Scarce and desirable.  This example was re-listed multiple times during June.  It looks like a combination of condition issues and a hefty opening price of $699.95 ($999.95 Buy-It-Now) have scared away potential bidders. 

WA0121 - Yes, it's baaaaaack!  This is the same EAGLE BOTTLING WORKS / TRADE (eagle) MARK / TACOMA WASHINGTON Hutchinson we commented on last month.  The original asking price of $3,000.00 had dropped to $100.00 last month.  Since then the price has been reduced to $75.00, then $60.00, and now $45.00 Or Best Offer.  There are still no bids.  And to think that if the seller had heeded our advice early on, this one might already be sitting on a new owner's shelf. 


When the late Joe Nagy initiated the Hutchinson Bottle Directory project 35+ years ago, he envisioned an encyclopedia-type volume listing all known Hutchinson bottles, plus state summaries of Hutchinson bottling, and individual bottler histories.  Several of us submitted state histories, but Joe soon discovered that historical information about individual bottlers was an overwhelming quantity of material that would add many years of effort to an already huge undertaking.  A prime example was the avid Pittsburg collector who inundated Joe with copies of primary research materials from city directories, business histories, photographs, etc.  Such material definitely needs to be published, but it is better done by individuals in specific geographical areas, not in conjunction with an initiative as massive as what has evolved to become  Fortunately, the Pittsburg materials were still in Joe's files that I obtained after his passing.  Although they have never been published, hopefully someone will eventually wade thru all of the material, supplement it with additional research, and ultimately make the information available to the public.  Until then, all we can afford to do time-wise is tease you by offering a peek at the information in our files.  A brief look at the J. C. Buffum material should serve as a good example.  This is maybe 5% of the information we have concerning Buffum:

Featured Bottler: J. C. Buffum - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Thanks to diligent research by Minnesota's Austin Fjerestad, here is some additional information supplementing the "Featured Bottler" history we posted June 1, 2013 concerning C. A. Grumbling of Cherry Tree, Pennsylvania:

  • Merchandise Week, 1924:

C. A. Grumbling of Cherry Tree, Pa., won a gold watch and a substantial cash prize in the recent cleaner sales contest conducted by the P. A. Geier Company of Cleveland.  Mr. Grumbling is 68 years young and his "territory" is a town of 565. 

  • Raftsmans Journal, Clearfield, Pennsylvania:

Married, January 6, 1867 - John Grumbling of Cherry Tree, Indiana County, and Sarah Smith of Burnside, Clearfield County.

We agree with Austin's suggestion that John and C. A. Grumbling were relatives, given the Cherry Tree location and unusual last name.  Austin's first thought was perhaps John Grumbling was C. A.'s father, but if C. A. was 68 years old in 1924, he would have been born in 1856, nine years prior to John Grumbling's 1867 marriage to Sarah Smith.  Whatever the situation, the Grumblings were definitely in Cherry Tree, Pennsylvania very early.  Thanks, Austin!  Keep those cards and letters coming!

Posted: June 1, 2013


During May we gathered and catalogued hundreds more Hutchinson bottle images, continued to add missing information to the HutchBook database, and responded to countless EMail inquiries.  We have spent almost 800 hours working on the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative since January 1, 2013 and are clearly going to establish a new record for total hours invested this year.  Assisting Charles David Head with the publication of his history of Koca Nola, yard work, two more marathons, and dealing with a nasty sinus infection chewed up the rest of May's schedule.  HutchBook activities remain our number one priority for June, with haying season looming on the horizon. 

Jim Eifler, the newest HBCA member, has joined Tom Leavy as a designated Hutchinson Specialist for Paterson, New Jersey.  Why have two Hutchinson specialists for Paterson? How about because we have identified 149 different Paterson Hutchinsons!  That total exceeds the number identified for 24 entire states, each individual territory and country, and all of the Canadian provinces except Ontario!  Chicago, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia are the only cities with more Hutchinsons than Paterson.  Working on Jim's Hutchinson Collector Profile (see link below) was great fun; don't miss reading it!

During the first five months of 2013 we have updated 2,382 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 371 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,656.


We expect to resume adding Hutchinson images to the database listings during June.  A Home page announcement will be posted when the process starts again.  Meanwhile, here a dozen of the Hutchinson images we acquired during May.  Additional information about each bottle is posted in the Bottle Directory.  Key the assigned HutchBook number into the "Bottle Number" field and click the "Find Hutchinsons" button for details.

Left to right: AR0154; CT0021.5; GA0218; HT0006

Left to right: IL0306; IN0004.5; KY0112; MI0105

Left to right:NJ0351; NY0150; OH0039; SD0039


The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is Jim Eifler.  Check out Jim's Hutchinson Collector Profile and you will likely recognize factors that also motivate you and/or other collectors you know.  Here's a link to his profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Jim Eifler


The "Featured Patent" for the May 1, 2013 edition of Hutchinson Highlights was Matthews' Gravitating Stopper.  That article specified the following guidelines have been established for HutchBook cataloguing purposes:

  1. If a Matthews-type bottle has Matthews base embossing, it was not added to the Hutchinson bottle data base; and

  1. If the base of a Matthews-type bottle does not have the Matthews embossing, it was added to the Hutchinson bottle data base. 

Soon after publishing these guidelines we noted the illustrated images of a Matthews Gravitating Stopper-shaped soda bottle posted at, one of several interesting bottle-related web sites that we frequently visit.  This rare bottle was recently dug in Northern California.  The front of the bottle is embossed STEPHENS & JOSE / VIRGINIA CITY / NEVADA, while the back features a fancy S&J monogram.  Look closely at the mouth and neck and you'll note an intact Hutchinson Patent Spring Stopper complete with its original rubber disk.  In order to properly classify this bottle as either a Hutchinson or a Gravitating Stopper, we need to consider base embossing information.  The base embossing reads GRAVITATING STOPPER / JOHN MATTHEWS / PAT. / OCT. 11 / 1864 / NEW YORK / MADE BY.  Applying the guidelines published above, this bottle was not added to the HutchBook database because it was originally blown for use with a Matthews Gravitating Stopper. 

According to Nevada History Through Glass: The Nevada Bottle Book Volume I, the outstanding new book authored by Fred Holabird:

"The Stephens & Jose was unprofitable, or the partnership fizzled because the pair could not get along...The soda works was out of business before any of the fires of 1875...Al Jose moved to Reno in late 1874 or the beginning of 1875 and started his own soda works on Virginia Street, using some of the embossed Stephens & Jose bottles they had made for the Virginia City store." 

The illustrations to the right show a clean example of this bottle and are typical of the high quality images featured in Fred Holabird's newly published Nevada bottle book.  For information on ordering a copy, visit

It appears Alfred Jose or subsequent plant owners discovered Hutchinson stoppers were effective closures for their old Gravitating Stopper bottles, hence the intact Hutchinson Patent Spring Stopper found in the illustrated bottle.

Tod von Mechow has catalogued this bottle at  Once at the site, click Find Bottles, click By Attributes, key NBB-021 into the Bottle Number field, click the Find Bottles button, and click the blue Bottle ID number.  You can then review the catalogued data and view front and back images of a nice, clean example of this beautiful bottle.  Click each of the images to enlarge them for easier viewing.


Austin Fjerestad recently forwarded a link to the following on-line publication:

Stelle, Lenville J., 2001, An Archaeological Guide to Historic Artifacts of the Upper Sangamon Basin.  Center For Social Research, Parkland College.

We were absolutely appalled at what this publication says about Hutchinson bottles:

Vessel's employing the Hutchinson, or simply "Hutch," type closure represent another form that is often difficult for the archaeologist to deal with.  Although likely quite common to household assemblages, the stopper will typically be separated from broken bottles.  The stopper itself resembled a partially straightened paper clip that had a rubber rimmed disk attached to one end.  The internal pressure created by the beer or soda that these closures were employed with, would keep the rubber gasket sealed against a lip or grove (sic) in the interior of the throat.  When one opened the bottle by pushing down on the closure, a distinctive "pop" or whistling sound would be produced.  This is the foundation of the American colloquialism, "soda pop."  At the level of the glass, the interior lip or groove is diagnostic.  It is sometimes difficult to distinguish Codd and applied, tooled Hutchinson bottles in the absence of the Codd's neck chamber.

Good grief!  If a student wrote this paragraph, they failed the course.  The thought that an instructor may have authored this inaccurate information is even scarier.  Heaven forbid this is the type of "expertise" they are passing on to others!  With due respect to those archaeology professionals doing quality research and publishing facts, this myth-filled publication is a prime example of why we developed  Here are the Hutchinson myths mentioned in this paragraph and references to factual information about each topic that can be found at

  • "internal pressure created by beer or soda" - Huh?  Beer is a still liquid.  See the article entitled "Hutchinsons Were Not Used For Bottling Beer" posted on the Archived Hutchinson Highlights page.

  • "lip or grove (sic) in the interior of the throat" - This sounds like a description of one of several closures frequently mistaken for Hutchinsons.  See the Hutchinson Bottle Sales Guide page.

  • "This is the foundation of the American colloquialism, 'soda pop'" This myth drives us nuts!  See the Origin of the Term "Soda Pop" page.

  • "It is sometimes difficult to distinguish Codd and applied, tooled Hutchinson bottles in the absence of the Codd's neck chamber."  Huh?  The author doesn't seem to understand the design differences between tops of Codd and Hutchinson bottles.  See the Hutchinson Bottle Sales Guide page.

Of particular concern is the fact this archaeological guide includes a counter indicating there have been over 250,000 visits to this web site since 2001.  Attempting to correct the misinformation communicated to that many visitors is akin to trying to herd cats!  All we can seemingly do is continue to make it as easy as possible for the uninformed and misinformed to find and comprehend facts.  When you see or hear someone repeating a Hutchinson myth, please refer them to  Please help us achieve the objectives outlined in our mission statement: is designed to serve as a widely used reference source that will benefit collectors, historians, archaeologists, and other interested users.  The Hutchinson Bottle Collectors' Association (HBCA) sponsors free public access to  HBCA members support and promote historical research by collecting, preserving, studying, documenting, displaying, communicating, and sharing information about the antique bottles that utilized Charles G. Hutchinson's Patent Spring Stopper.


Okay, the number of Montana Territory Hutchinsons catalogued has only increased from two to three, but that is a 50% increase!  Yes, one of the required texts for my statistics course was How To Lie With Statistics.  Anyway...

We were tipped off about a newly dug, apple green KROGER BROS. / BUTTE, M.T. Hutchinson thanks to a message from James Campiglia that Ferd Meyer posted at  Subsequent correspondence with James resulted in adding this Rare variant to the database.  Left-to-right, the images posted below show James' bottle as dug and after it was washed, the Scarce blue aqua variant, and a Rare A. LANDT / LIVINGSTON / M.T., the third Montana Territory Hutchinson.

Left to right:MtT0002 (uncleaned); MtT0002 (cleaned); MtT0001; MtT0003


Those who peruse the on-line auction sites for antique bottles have undoubtedly noted the current Hutchinson feeding frenzy.  As mentioned in the "Ka-Ching: Hutchinsons Bringing Big Bucks!" article posted May 1, 2013, there have been several recent on-line sales of some very pricey Hutchinsons.  We are hard-pressed to believe some of the rumors about whom the buyer(s) may be.  The only thing we know for certain is the side-effect of these sales has been a significant increase in the asking prices for many Hutchinsons. 

While many of the bottles that have been listed are beautiful, rare, and indeed very valuable, several sellers are clearly just fishing and hoping to cash in while the marketplace is seemingly red hot.  Following-up on many of the listings indicates that many of the big bucks offerings haven't sold, but at least the postings have given us all an opportunity to view images of bottles that otherwise seldom see daylight.

If you haven't been following the increased pricing trend, do your usual search and sort the results by "Price: Highest First."  Be sure to also search the "Completed Listings" to see what is and isn't actually selling.

The illustrated cobalt blue J. ZUBER / PORT HURON, MICH. is catalogued as MI0424.  This beautiful bottle was listed with a Buy-It-Now price of $2,999.99 and apparently sold.  We said "apparently" because we have yet to contact the seller to confirm that he actually banked the bucks.    

Particularly entertaining have been the offerings of common Hutchinsons at unbelievably high prices.  How about a HARRIS / LITHIA SODA (SC0055 from Harris Springs, SC) for $5,000.00?  Our favorite, however, is a WA0121, an EAGLE BOTTLING WORKS / TRADE (eagle) MARK / TACOMA WASHINGTON.  This bottle is at the upper end of Scarce (10-100 known) and approaching being Common (100+ known).  Examples are readily available and typically sell in the $25-30 range.  During May a GreedyBay seller listed the illustrated bottle at $3,000.  The bottle didn't sell and he has since steadily decreased the Buy-It-Now price to $500, $350, $250, $200, $150, and now to $100.  We responded to his "what's it worth?" EMail inquiry, but he didn't have the courtesy to reply and posted a page from's "Washington Hutchinson List" (showing the catalog entry for WA0121) without properly citing the source.  So much for trying to help him.  This exercise further underscores the wisdom of opting not to track dollar values.  And so it goes...


During the process of cataloguing over 17,600 Hutchinsons we have enjoyed seeing a wide and interesting variety of city, town, and borough names.  A few of the names instantly fuel the need to learn something about their source.  That is exactly what happened while cataloguing PA0428.5, the illustrated quart Hutchinson embossed C. A. GRUMBLING / CHERRY TREE / GRANT, P.O. / PA.  Say, what?  What kind of an address is that? 

Unfortunately, we don't currently have the time to access primary resource materials and properly research this early Hutchinson bottler.  Hopefully someone in the Cherry Tree area can do the legwork and provide historical information about Grumbling.  In addition to the illustrated quart, pint and 20 ounce Hutchinsons (PA0427 and PA0428) also exist from this bottling plant.  All three of these Hutchinson bottles are Rare.  When the illustrated quart was recently listed at an on-line auction site, it drew 11 bids from five bidders and sold for a cool $935.00. 

For historical information concerning the Cherry Tree, GRANT P.O. address, navigate to the following page:

Featured Bottler: C. A. Grumbling - Cherry Tree, Pennsylvania


David Tingen, president of the Raleigh Bottle Club in Raleigh, North Carolina, recently discovered  Recognizing as a resource his fellow club members would find of interest, he asked Robert Creech, the club's web administrator, to contact us about linking their site to  Robert has since added a direct link to the North Carolina Hutchinson Lists to the Raleigh Bottle Club's Home page.  Use this link to the Raleigh club's site to see what has been set up:

This is a great step in the right direction for broadening the sharing of Hutchinson information with our fellow collectors!  We have been promoting direct links with bottle club web sites since launching and thus far met with very limited success.  If you are a member of a bottle club that maintains a web site, please encourage the club powers-that-be to link your club's site to 

Additional thoughts to consider when linking club sites to

  • The Hutchinson List .pdf files are database "snapshots" as of a specific date and updated periodically as time permits.  The massive HutchBook database is continually updated, and the "Hutchinson Search" engine page is the best way to access the latest information.  Most of the currently posted Hutchinson Lists were created in early March, 2013 and therefore don't include the hundreds of updates that have been posted since then; and

  • Club members might not realize how much other information about Hutchinsons is available at if they only view the Hutchinson List .pdf pages.  Linking to HutchBook's Hutchinson Lists is a great door opener, but be sure users are also aware of the powerful Hutchinson Search engine, and the hundreds of pages of historical information available at the site. 

Posted: May 1, 2013


April was yet another month where our primary focus was gathering Hutchinson bottle images, filling in missing information in the HutchBook database, and responding to a steady flow of EMail inquiries.  We have invested 600+ hours into the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative since January 1, 2013 and are on track to set a new record for the year.  Helping Charles David Head ready his Koca Nola book for publication, home repairs, and yard work chewed up a major amount of April hours, as did pounding out two more marathons.  The spring marathon season continues, with two (or possibly three) more scheduled for May.  In spite of such distractions, HutchBook activities remain our number one priority. 

During 2013 we have updated 2,006 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 322 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,608.


We archived many more Hutchinson images during April.  Hopefully we will be able to continue the process of attaching more of them to the database listings during May.  Be watching for a Home page announcement when more images are added.  We are as anxious to get going again as you are!

Here are a dozen of the Hutchinson images acquired during April.  Additional information about each bottle can be found in the Bottle Directory by keying the assigned HutchBook number into the "Bottle Number" field and clicking the "Find Hutchinsons" button:

Left to right: FL0093; MT0010; PA1156; TX0735

Left to right: MN0399; MO0167; PA1272; UT0020

Left to right:MS0006.5; NJ0024; OH0050; PA2330


The featured collector for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights is Ted Parks, a resident of Southeastern Washington State.  Check out his Hutchinson Collector Profile and you will likely recognize factors that also motivate you and/or other collectors you know.  Here's a link to Ted's profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Ted Parks

Note: If you know of individuals you think would be interesting subjects for future Hutchinson Collector Profiles, please send your suggestions to


One of our best acquisitions at the 2008 FOHBC Expo in York, Pennsylvania was a copy of Ginger Beer & Root Beer Heritage - 1790 to 1930 by Donald and Elizabeth Yates.  In the midst of multiple pages of full-color images of glass ginger beer bottles we spotted a Hutchinson embossed B. & B. / MFR'S OF / OLYMPE / THE NEW / CELEBRATED / GINGER BEER.  Unfortunately, the origin of the bottle wasn't identified, so we added it to the HutchBook list of unknown mavericks, hoping one of our regular readers might recognize the bottle.  Early in 2009 we received a message from the late Paul Welko, one of our Chicago Hutchinson Specialists and a noted researcher.  Paul indicated:

I am almost 100% sure that the B & B ginger beer Hutch is from Chicago as I have 5 or 6 non-Hutch bottles with B & B embossed on them.  They range from 12 oz. beer bottles to a quart amber apple cider and a crown top amber Malt Myrhh.

Based on Paul's input, we catalogued this maverick as a Chicago Hutchinson.  Nothing more happened until a couple of weeks ago when an example of the bottle turned up on GreedyBay as item #190828782061.  An EMail exchange with the very helpful seller revealed this was the very same bottle pictured in the Yates' book.  Alas, he had owned the bottle for many years and couldn't remember where it was found.  The auction closed with only one bid at the opening price of $49.99 + $9.00 P&H.  Someone has acquired a very unusual and attractive Hutchinson. 

For now we're going to leave this one catalogued as IL0131, but we need your help!  Can you confirm the origin of this bottle?  Does the "B. & B." stand for Chicago soda bottlers Blass & Burkhardt?  Do you recognize the "OLYMPE" brand name or the T.R.R. initials embossed on the base of the bottle?  Help!  EMail us at


An increasing number of Hutchinsons have been listed for big bucks at on-line auction sites lately.  Auctions for these four bottles caught our eye:

Left to right: FL0167; MI0374; RI0010; SC0002

FL0167 - This is one of the nicest Escambia Pepsi-Cola Hutchinsons we have seen in quite some time, as most examples seem to have quite a bit of case wear and/or damage.  The bottle isn't as rare as the seller indicates, but it is hard to find in good condition, and highly desirable because it is the sole embossed Pepsi-Cola Hutchinson.  It appears the bidders agree, as it has drawn 11 bids from six different bidders and is at $2,038.00 with just under three days to go.  It is listed as GreedyBay #161013678111.  Update 05-03-13: The auction closed with 17 bids from nine bidders at $2,938.00.

MI0374 - This beautiful, cobalt blue Hutchinson from Mt. Clemens, Michigan has an opening auction price of $1,799.99 and a Buy-It-Now price of $1,999.99.  It has no bids thus far and is listed as GreedyBay #400477212565.  Update 05-03-13: The sale closed when someone snapped it up at the $1,999.99 Buy-It-Now price.

RI0010 - When this Hutchinson was first listed we directed the seller to the 13 different Rhode Island HutchBook listings because this bottle isn't "The Rarest Of The Two Known Rhode Island Hutchinson Bottles" as claimed.  Alas, that claim hasn't been changed, again proving you can lead 'em to water, but you can't make 'em drink.  Even so, this looks like a nice Rhode Island Hutchinson and it is therefore very desirable, particularly by those collectors working on completing 50 state Hutchinson collections.  It was originally listed with a $2,000.00 Buy-It-Now price, re-listed with the price reduced to $1,800.00, and just dropped to $1,495 with free shipping.  All five offers made thus far have been declined by the seller.  The listing has a week to go as GreedyBay #121091866280.  Update 05-03-13: Closed without selling.

SC0002 - We had this rare Anderson, South Carolina Hutchinson catalogued but hadn't seen a photo of it until this bottle surfaced.  Two bidders chased it and drove the opening $399.00 price up to close at $510.00.  It was listed as GreedyBay #251265422627. 


The featured bottlers for this edition of Hutchinson Highlights are the Sarver Brothers, operators of a small bottling plant in Dayton, Michigan.  We are very pleased to present this in-depth article authored by Jeff Scharnowske.  "Scharno" is a long-time bottle collector and one of several Michigan Hutchinson Specialists who have been making major contributions to the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative for several years.  His Hutchinson special areas of interest are Berrien and Shiawassee Counties in Michigan.  As you read the article and enjoy the information about the Sarver Brothers, also note the detailed research process and documentation of sources.  Our thanks for sharing your well-done article!

Featured Bottler: Sarver Bros. - Dayton, Michigan

Posted: April 1, 2013


Another month has flown by and "poof," a quarter of the year is history.  Tomorrow we will pass the 500 hour mark for time invested in the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative in 2013.  Unanswered HutchBook EMail has been mounting up again of late; thanks for your patience in awaiting responses.

Since January 1, 2013 we have updated 1,737 HutchBook database listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 277 newly identified Hutchinson bottles, boosting the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued to 17,560.  The anticipated increase in new submittals immediately after launching the database is finally slowing down, providing some much-welcomed additional time to begin to catch up on the multitude of items on the seemingly never-ending HutchBook to-do list.


Several of the EMail inquiries we are receiving indicate many users aren't aware how frequently the HutchBook database is being updated; it has been updated every single day so far this year!  The Hutchinson Search page includes two fields which make it very easy to identify database changes:

  • NEW LISTINGS: To check for new listings, simply key a date in the "New Listings Since" field and click the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  If you're interested in a specific state, also select that state name in the "State or Province" field, and the search engine will return a list of any newly catalogued Hutchinsons for that state. 

  • ALL UPDATES: To check for all updates, key a date in the "Updates Since" field and click the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  To identify updates for a specific state, also select the state name in the "State or Province" field, and the search engine will return a list of any/all changes for that state. 

In addition to HutchBook database updates, other changes are also continually being posted.  Here's a list of several updates added during March.  If you missed any of these changes, visit the Archived Hutchinson Highlights page to catch up on the details:

  • Quick-Links have been added at the top of all pages, making it easier to find a specific subject and quickly navigate to it;

  • A possible second city of origin has been identified for the Y B Co / REGISTERED maverick Hutchinson;

  • Closing prices for the three beautiful Hutchinsons offered in American Bottle Auctions #57 sale have been posted;

  • Hutchinson bottles with base embossing ERIE have been attributed as being manufactured by Erie Glass Company Ltd.;

  • On-line auction results for the $5.00 "Medicine and Cure...Hutchisons (sic)" were posted;

  • The "Hutchinson Lists" (.pdf files) were all updated March 7-8;

  • Corrections for Hutchinson bottles with D.G.Co. glass manufacturer marks have been input; and

  • Several corrections were made to properly identify bottles with C.C.G.CO. maker's marks (Cream City Glass Company vs. Colorado City Glass Company).


We archived hundreds more Hutchinson images during March, but have yet to start attaching more of them to the database listings.  Newly acquired Adobe PhotoShop software will be used to clean up the quality of many images.  There will, of course, be a major Home page announcement when we start adding more images.  Thank you for your continued patience.

Here are examples of several nice Hutchinson images acquired this month:

Left to right, they are MN0077, NV0002, PA1760, and BC0018.  Additional information about each of these bottles can be found in the Bottle Directory by keying the assigned number into the "Bottle Number" field and clicking the "Find Hutchinsons" button.


Our featured collector for this issue of Hutchinson Highlights is Josh Guisinger.  Like many of us, Josh specializes in collecting items from the geographical area where he resides.  Check out his Hutchinson Collector Profile and you will likely recognized factors that also motivate you and/or other collectors you know.  Here's a link to Josh's profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Josh Guisinger

Note: If you know of individuals you think would be interesting subjects for future Hutchinson Collector Profiles, please send your suggestions to


We are inaugurating yet another new Hutchinson Highlights feature this issue with the addition of an article about a specific bottler.  If you have researched and authored an article about a Hutchinson bottler that you feel would be of interest to others, and would like the article considered for publication in a future edition of Hutchinson Highlights, please contact us via EMail at

For the first article, we selected L. L. Daus of Baker City, Oregon.  It has been almost 30 years since I first started chasing information about this mysterious bottler, and the chase goes on!  In my opinion, this bottle is still Oregon's rarest Hutchinson soda.  Here's a link to the article:

Featured Bottler: L. L. DAUS


Last week's HutchBook EMail brought a message with complete details and the accompanying image of a newly identified Hutchinson that originated in Iuka, Mississippi.  This new variant was promptly catalogued as MS0065.5.  Visit the Bottle Directory to access the HutchBook database search engine and obtain complete data on this one.     

The proud owner of this beautiful bottle is Clifton Beith, an avid collector of Mississippi Hutchinsons and straight-sided crown tops.  Clifton is rapidly closing in on having half of the known Mississippi Hutchinsons, and as he indicates, "always looking for more!"  If you have Mississippi Hutchinsons for sale or trade that you think might be of interest to Clifton, contact him via cell phone at 662-832-8494.

Iuka is an unusual name for a town, so naturally we couldn't resist looking for information about it.  Here is a portion of the Wikipedia listing for Iuka, Mississipi:

Iuka is a city in Tishomingo County, Mississippi.  The population was 3,059 at the 2000 census.  It is the county seat of Tishomingo County... 

Iuka is built on the site of a Chickasaw Indian village that is thought to have been subordinate to the settlement at Underwood Village.  The name 'Iuka' comes from the name of one of the chieftains of the village.

Euro-American settlers arrived with the Memphis and Charleston Railroad in 1857.  Before the American Civil War, the town boasted an all-female college, a boys' military academy, and a fine hotel.  The Civil War brought widespread devastation when a major engagement here occurred on September 19, 1862.  The Battle of Iuka resulted in 1200 to 1500 killed or wounded.  The dead Confederate soldiers were buried in a long trench that eventually became Shady Grove Cemetery.

The first normal school built in the former Confederacy after the Civil War, Iuka Normal Institute, was built here.  However, the town did not return to prosperity for many years. The building of Pickwick Landing Dam and Pickwick Lake by the Tennessee Valley Authority brought activity back to the town.

In 1904, water from Iuka's mineral springs won first prize for the purest and best mineral water at the World's Fair in St. Louis. 

Wikipedia also lists "Mineral Springs Park" as a local recreation site.  This is only a guess, but the odds seem very high that Iuka's prize winning mineral water at the 1904 World's Fair was probably bottled in Hutchinsons identical to the illustrated bottle.


A limited number of copies of Austin Fjerestad's second edition of Minn. Soda Water Works are now for sale on-line.  Austin's GreedyBay user ID is "hutchlord." 

Additional information and ordering details continue to be posted at Minnesota (Austin Fjerestad - 2012) in the "Bottle Books For Sale" portion of the "Collecting" section of

If you don't yet have a copy of this excellent contribution to our hobby's growing body of publications, you better get your copy before they are all gone!


Larry Smith's newly published book, Antique Florida Soda Bottles - From West Palm Beach to Miami, Florida, just arrived in the mail.  Like his first book, Treasures in the Sun: Antique Soda and Beverage Bottles of Key West, Florida, Larry has put together another welcomed contribution to our hobby's growing body of literature. 

This new volume covers Hutchinsons, BIMAL and ABM crown tops (including hobbleskirt Coca-Colas) from West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, and Miami, Florida.  In addition to detailed bottling company histories, the book is profusely illustrated with top quality, full-color images of bottles, historic photographs, advertisements, postcards, and more. 

The cover illustration on the right and the photo of West Palm Beach Hutchinsons pictured below are typical examples of the nice bottle images in this fine new book.

For additional details and ordering information, click on newly posted page in the HutchBook "Bottle Books For Sale" section: Florida: West Palm Beach to Miami, Florida.


In addition to devoting many March hours to continually updating the database and other HutchBook initiatives, we also invested a considerable number of hours into assisting Charles David Head with his book project documenting the history of the Koca Nola Company.  For several years we have helped him with primary research activities, including building and maintaining  My involvement recently increased by agreeing to help pull the book together to ready it for publication.  I have been down the self-publication book route 10+ times before, so I am a logical choice to help.  The downside, of course, is the hours devoted to the Koca Nola book project are hours not spent on HutchBook activities.  That impact aside, it will be great to see Charles' years of hard work come to fruition.  I have had an opportunity to review a complete draft of the text and the numerous bottle images and historic ads, etc., and can tell A Head's Up On Koca Nola will be a fine contribution to the body of research materials documenting soft drink industry history. 

Regular readers may recognize the image shown above of six different James Esposito Hutchinson bottles.  (The embossing lettering has been painted to make it easier to read.  Photo credit: R. J. Brown)  This photo is also posted in the "Koca Nola History" portion of, along with "Proud To Be An American," Charles David Head's excellent history of James Esposito's soda bottling works.  If you have yet to visit, or haven't done so recently, check out the site and bookmark it to track progress as Charles' book moves toward publication this fall.

BOOK IN PROGRESS REPORT: New Mexico book project by Bill Lockhart, Virginia Bergey, and Zang Wood

During March I had an opportunity for a sneak peek at a fascinating new book project concerning New Mexico's early soft drink industry history.  Authors Bill Lockhart, Virginia Bergey, and Zang Wood are focusing on Theodore L. Reber, "the Johnny Appleseed of soda bottlers," plus soda bottling in the Black Range, and in Silver City.  Reber is a very familiar name thanks to cataloguing several New Mexico Hutchinsons bearing his name.  My research into soft drink industry history in the states of Oregon and Washington turned up a few bottlers who apparently moved their bottling operations several times seeking improved markets.  That said, none of them begin to compare with Theodore Reber's modus operandi!  I won't reveal anything more at this time, and just suggest you stay tuned and be watching for news of the publication of what is going to be quite an interesting book. 

Left to right, the pictured Hutchinsons are NM0045.5, NM0046, NM0055, and NM0056.  Additional information about each of these beautiful bottles can be found in the Bottle Directory by keying the assigned number into the "Bottle Number" field and clicking the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  Our thanks to Bill Lockhart, Virginia Bergey, and Zang Wood for permission to post these images from their forthcoming book! 


Special thanks to John Pastor, publisher of Antique Bottle & Glass Collector magazine, for picking up on the warnings we have posted on HutchBook's Caveat Emptor page concerning irradiated Hutchinsons.  John's March 2013 AB&GC cited in the "Letters to the Editor" on page 3 under the heading "Color Us Upset (And You Should Be, Too)."  Here's a portion of what John posted:


The "dark purple," "light cobalt blue," "cornflower blue," "topaz," and other "rare color" irradiated Hutchinsons bottles offered at antiques shops, bottle shows, and on-line auction sites continue to plague our hobby.  Many unscrupulous sellers are permanently altering the glass color of these historical artifacts and several are committing blatant fraud by "forgetting" to label such bottles as having been irradiated.  Help stop this travesty by refusing to buy their irradiated bottles!" 

The problem, of course, is that sellers will irradiate glass as long as people continue to buy it.  They may label us "purists" and claim irradiation simply accelerates an otherwise natural process, but the bottom line is these sellers don't care about historical artifacts; to them it's all about the money.  We have given up on alerting the powers-that-be at GreedyBay that they are condoning and promoting fraud by not banning the sale of irradiated glass.  Heaven forbid they should do something positive for glass collectors and possibly cut into their 80% profit ratio!  One area where we can have a positive impact, however, is bottle shows.  If you are involved in setting up a bottle show, please contribute to the long-term health of our hobby and ban sellers who offer altered glass items.  It is past time to rid our hobby of irradiated glass!

Posted: March 1, 2013


Regular visitors hopefully noticed the Bottle Directory database was updated every single day last month!  That accomplishment is a result of focusing on making sure users are continually accessing the most current information we can deliver.  Admittedly, constant updates are also a defensive move to drain the swamp before the alligators decide I look like a tasty morsel!  We have devoted well over 300 hours to the Hutchinson Bottle Directory initiative this year and if this pace continues we are on our way to a record investment of time for 2013.  Please visit frequently! 

In addition to keying in corrections and cataloguing new data and submissions, considerable time in February was spent deleting entry errors, and properly alphabetizing listings for Bridgeton, CT and the state of Washington.  When originally cataloguing the Washington and Washington Territory Hutchinsons, they were inadvertently listed in the order of the company numbers in Washington Sodas, rather than alphabetically by bottler name like the rest of the HutchBook database.  The listings have been corrected. 

So far this year we have updated 1,433 listings.  That number includes the cataloguing of 247 newly identified Hutchinson bottles.  As of March 1, 2013, the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued has grown to 17,537. 


Look closely at the three images posted directly below and decide which, if any, of these bottles was used for bottling beer. 

THE JOHN KUHLMANN / BREWING CO. / ELLENVILLE, N.Y. bottle pictured on the left is one of six variants catalogued from this firm and listed in the HutchBook database as NY0372.  Hint: the fact it is catalogued as a Hutchinson bottle means it was used for soda or mineral water; HUTCHINSONS WERE NOT USED FOR BOTTLING BEER. 

But wait, the bottle is embossed "BREWING CO.," so it must have been used for beer, right?  Wrong.  Embossing was added to Hutchinsons to document ownership of the bottle.  Although some bottlers expanded the use of embossing to serve as a form of advertising (e.g. Coca-Cola, Pepsi-Cola, Koca-Nola, Milwaukee's John Graf with his "The Best What Gives" slogan, etc.), the basic purpose for embossing was to communicate to consumers that the bottler was selling the contents of the bottle, not the bottle itself.  As time passed, glass manufacturers and bottlers increasingly embossed bottles with familiar statements such as THE PROPERTY OF..., THIS BOTTLE IS NEVER SOLD, THIS BOTTLE NOT TO BE SOLD, STOLEN FROM..., THIS BOTTLE IS THE PROPERTY OF A WORKING MAN RETURN IT, etc. 

Okay, but the Kuhlmann bottle is embossed BREWING Co., not BOTTLING Co.  Correct.  That was because the firm was a brewery that bottled soda, mineral water, and beer.  They bottled soda and mineral water in Hutchinson bottles, and beer in other-than-Hutchinson bottles.  The firm's legal name was The Kuhlmann Brewing Company, so that is the wording they chose to have the glass manufacturers engrave for their bottle molds. 

But, why didn't Kuhlmann use Hutchinson bottles for their soda, mineral water, and beer?  The answer is simple; soda and mineral water are carbonated drinks and they were bottled in Hutchinson bottles because the carbon dioxide exerted pressure on the surface of the liquid and the rubber disk at the bottom of the Hutchinson Patent Spring Stopper, and that pressure held the stopper in place so the liquid remained fully carbonated until the bottle was opened and the contents consumed.  Beer, on the other hand, is a "still" (not carbonated) drink and if it had been bottled in Hutchinsons, there would have been no internal pressure to hold the stopper in place in the neck of the bottle. 

A quick search of the HutchBook database (key the word BREW into the "Primary Name" field) reveals we have catalogued 116 different Hutchinson bottles embossed with the word BREW or BREWERY.  Each of these 116 bottles were used for bottling soda or mineral water, not for bottling beer.

And that brings us to the other two bottle images posted above.  Although they are similar in style to Hutchinsons, both utilized Baltimore Loop Seal closures and were used for beer or other still drinks.  Carbonated soda or mineral water bottled in either of these bottles would have blown a Loop Seal out the mouth of the bottle, leaving the contents flat and unsalable.  See the "Feature Patent" article posted below for additional details.


We started to update the Hutchinson Lists several times during February, but no sooner started than we would be buried with new submittals.  Consequently we rescheduled the production of updated .pdf files for March.  Updating these files so everyone can have current lists prior to the spring bottle show season is our top priority project as soon as this issue of "Hutchinson Highlights" is posted.

Updated 03-08-13: Updated Hutchinson Lists have been posted.

The Hutchinson Lists underwent a live field trial in mid-February with a day trip to Aurora, Oregon for the Oregon Bottle Collectors Association's winter sale.  In addition to bright sunshine which we hadn't see for months, it was a pleasure to see 25-30 eager collectors lined up outside the sales building awaiting the opening of the doors to early bird buyers.  We enjoyed visiting with numerous Oregon and Washington collectors we hadn't seen for quite awhile, and were particularly pleased to obtain several bottles for the collection.  Copies of Hutchinson Lists proved very handy when looking thru tables of bottles and allowed me to quickly and easily identify and nab examples of OR0003 and OR0011 that I might have otherwise missed without referencing the list.  You better believe I won't be going to future bottle shows, antiques shops, etc., without taking my Hutchinson Lists!


No additional images were added to the HutchBook database during February, but hopefully that will change drastically during March.  We have been spending considerable time processing and organizing images and look forward to adding more of them to the database listings.  Prior to adding more photographs, we intend to utilize the Adobe PhotoShop software scheduled to arrive this coming week to better crop and improve the quality of the images we will be posting.  Thank you for your continued patience!

Speaking of images, here are examples of several we acquired just this afternoon:

Left to right, they are IL0642, MN0125.5 (and MN0190.5), MN0473.8, and OH0136.5.  Check the Bottle Directory for additional information about each bottle.


Profiles of Hutchinson collectors is a feature we have looked forward to adding to for quite some time.  Learning more about what motivates other collectors is interesting and also provides a way to learn more about ourselves.  Over time these Hutchinson Collector Profiles will likely cause many of us to recognize some very familiar personal characteristics, traits, and influences.  A great part of the fun of working on the Hutchinson Bottle Directory for so many years has been getting to know the wide variety of people who are fascinated with Hutchinson bottles.  While we intend to profile a wide and diverse variety of active collectors, for this first installment we are reaching back in time and reprinting a profile of the late Ralph Long, an HBCA Hall of Fame Award recipient who passed away in late 1997.  Ralph was an internationally known collector with over 600 picture Hutchinson bottles, a 50 state Hutchinson collection, and an extensive collection of Birmingham, Alabama-area sodas, and he is missed by all who knew him.  This interview was conducted in 1984 and reprinted when Collecting Soda Pop Bottles was published in 2006.  Here's a link to Ralph's profile:

Hutchinson Collector Profile: Ralph Long  

Note: If you know individuals you think would be interesting subjects for future Hutchinson Collector Profiles, please send your suggestions to


Immediately after posting last month's "Hutchinson Highlights," EMail lit up with multiple submissions concerning the illustrated Y B Co (monogram) / REGISTERED maverick Hutchinson that was recently dug in upstate New York.  Besides being a very attractive bottle, this was an exciting find because it was the 17,500th different Hutchinson we have catalogued. 

In an effort to narrow down the possibilities of the bottle's origin, we searched the HutchBook database, but found no bottles with similar embossing. 

The base is embossed K. HUTTER / 10 / B / NEW YORK and a database search (highlight Hutter, Karl in the "Glass Mfr." field) returned a list of 111 different bottles flagged with Hutter as the manufacturer.  Although this particular maverick wasn't found, the list of bottles provided the geographical information that all but two of the bottles manufactured by Hutter (one each from AL and GA) are from CT, NJ, NY, and PA.  That suggests the odds were very high this bottle was utilized by a bottler in one of those four states, narrowing the search parameters.

Before we catalogued it as an unknown maverick, we checked Tod von Mechow's great site and spotted a cork-stoppered pony bottle with an almost identical front embossing.  Tod has the pony variant catalogued as bottle #62432AA.  If you aren't regularly accessing, you are missing out!  Go there now, click on Find Bottle - By Attributes, key 62432AA into the "Bottle Number" field, click the "Find Bottles" button, and then click on the "Bottle ID" when the search results are returned.  Ta da - Yuengling Brewing Company, Pottsville, Pennsylvania.  Thanks, Tod!

Mystery solved, we added this nice Hutchinson to the HutchBook database as PA2464.5.  The bottle was briefly listed for sale on GreedyBay, but surprisingly drew no bids.  Meanwhile, we are still waiting for the owner to send us the height and diameter dimensions so we can complete the database entry (hint, hint!).

Updated 03-05-13: Yuengling Brewing Company also operated in Saratoga Branch, New York, so a cross reference has been added to the HutchBook database for a possible second city of origin for this maverick Hutchinson.  


The second edition of Minn. Soda Water Works by Austin Fjerestad includes error corrections and updated images.  It is now available with pricing revised to $42.50 per book, $46.50 postage paid.  Full information and ordering details are posted at Minnesota (Austin Fjerestad - 2012) in the "Bottle Books For Sale" portion of the "Collecting" section of 


The Hutchinson Bottle Collectors' Association welcomes Chris Hoder of Bradenton, Florida, as our newest member.  Chris is one of numerous collectors specializing in collecting Florida Hutchinson bottles.  Welcome, Chris!

As a reminder,'s "Collecting" section includes these HBCA-specific pages (click on the page title to switch to that page):

We are finalizing design of the pages specifying HBCA member names, collecting specialties, for sale and wanted ads, contact information, etc.  We expect to communicate the details to all HBCA members soon.


If you're looking for bargain Hutchinsons, you might want to check out the on-line auction listings for the two illustrated bottles.  Each of them is currently listed for $5.00 (plus $11.25 for P&H).  The ERIE BOTTLING / WORKS. / UTICA, N. Y. / REGISTERED (near base) is catalogued as NY1341.  It is Scarce and listed as GreedyBay 181089344049.  The WAIT EVERETT / NEW HAVEN / CONN. is catalogued as CT0147.  It is Common and listed as GreedyBay 181089344705.

Each of these bottles has been listed for over a month and drawn no bids.  Although the photos aren't very sharp, it doesn't appear that either bottle has any major condition problems.  The information in the sellers' accompanying descriptions is also very limited.  Rather than suggesting problems with the desirability of these bottles, it appears they are victims of ineffective listings.  Both are:

  • Classified as "Medicines and Cures" rather than "Sodas;" and

  • Described as "Hutchisons" (sic) rather than "Hutchinsons" or "Hutch" bottles. 

Given the classification and spelling errors, many potential bidders are never going to find these listings when searching GreedyBay.

We pointed the seller at the "Hutchinson Bottle Sales Guide" page outlining the information collectors desire when reviewing Hutchinsons offered for sale.  Instead of reading, comprehending, and implementing the suggestions the Guide provides, the seller keeps dropping the prices each time the bottles are re-listed, and is probably wondering why such nice bottles aren't drawing any bids.  Once again, we can lead 'em to water, but we can't make 'em drink.  Okay, now that you know they're out there, go get 'em.

Updated 03-06-13: The auction for NY1341 closed with no bids.  CT0147 drew three bids from two bidders and sold for $6.50.


American Bottle Auctions' sale #57 is underway, with the closing bell set to ring on Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 1900 PST.  The offerings include these three nice Hutchinsons:

(Note: For full data on each of these bottles, refer to their Bottle Directory listings.)

Lot 26 (HutchBook # CA0248): J. C. / PORT COSTA / SODA WORKS.  According to the late Peck Markota's A Look At CALIFORNIA HUTCHINSON TYPE SODA BOTTLES, "Jeremiah P. Casey first came to Port Costa (California) in 1880, and over the years he got himself involved in a lot of different ventures.  Judge Casey, as he was known, not only was he the Justice of the Peace of Port Costa for over 25 years, hotel and bar owner, owner of the Ferry Exchange, boarding and lodging operator, but he also established the Port Costa Brewery, the first in Contra Costa County...also the proprietor of the Port Costa Soda Works during the 1890s and into the 1900s." 

Estimated to bring $300-$400 this bottle is already at $650.00.

Updated 03-06-13: Lot 26 sold for $1,000.00.  

Lot 27 (HutchBook # HI0068): HAWAIIAN / SODA WORKS / HONOLULU. H.I.  The ABA auction listing describes this bottle as "very rare," but we have it catalogued as Scarce (10-100 known) in the HutchBook database.  A collector we know well purchased an example of this bottle from a Hawaiian collector who had 20+ of them.  Rarity rating aside, these are beautiful and highly desirable bottles, and even if they were Common, demand would still exceed supply.

Estimated to bring $1,000-$2,000 this bottle is currently at $750.00.

Updated 03-06-13: Lot 27 sold for $1,500.00.

Lot 28 (HutchBook # WT0007): QUEEN CITY SODA WORKS / SEATTLE. W.T. / A. WOLFF.  Research has documented that August C. Wolff was in business 1890-1899 at 621 Cherry (residence same) in Seattle.  That said, per Washington Sodas, "In spite of the fact that this plant's bottle is embossed 'W.T.,' it has yet to be confirmed this firm was actually in business prior to Washington Territory become a state on November 11, 1889."  Legitimate Washington Territory bottle or not, the firm's name, glass color, and the typical crudity of these bottles make them one of my favorite Washington Hutchinsons.

Estimated to bring $300-$600 this bottle is currently at $400.00.

Updated 03-06-13: Lot 28 sold for $425.00.


The HutchBook database list of glass manufacturers has been updated by adding:

  • The Liquid Carbonic Company

  • Old Dominion

  • Olean Glass Company

  • Queen City Glass Company

  • Van Kuren & Stone Bottle Company

  • Updated 03-06-13: Erie Glass Company Limited

  • Updated 03-09-13: Thanks to input from Tod von Mechow, we assigned four Selma, Alabama Hutchinsons with D.G.Co. maker's marks on their bases to Dixie Glass Company.  Additionally, we assigned one Hutchinson from Maryland, and 15 from Pennsylvania with D.G.Co. followed by a number on their heels to Duquesne Glass Company of Paden City, WV.  Tod continues to research Hutchinsons used by a smattering of bottlers in Delaware, New Jersey, and New York that also have D.G.Co. maker's marks.  Thanks, Tod!

  • Updated 03-14-13: Recoded eight bottles with C.C.G.CO. maker's marks from Cream City Glass Company to their correct Colorado City Glass Company manufacturers.     

To learn the years of operation and other interesting historical facts about these glass manufacturers, visit these two very informative web sites:

Glass Bottle Marks:

Soda and Beer Bottles of North America:

Searching for Hutchinson bottles blown by specific glass manufacturers is simple via the Hutchinson Search page.  Click on the "Glass Mfr." of choice, select a specific state (if desired), and press the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  Using The Liquid Carbonic Company as an example, there are currently 62 Hutchinsons catalogued bearing "THE LIQUID" embossing.  Adding a state to the query, e.g. West Virginia, produces a list of the six WV Hutchinsons produced by The Liquid Carbonic Company.  The state of Washington has one bottle with THE LIQUID on its base; see if you can identify it.

Posted: February 1, 2013


Whew!  What happened to January?  The month was an absolute whirlwind of HutchBook activity.  If you haven't been tracking the updates and new listings via the Hutchinson Search page, you may have missed noting the significant quantity of changes and newly identified Hutchinsons that were catalogued during January.  New material was posted on 31 consecutive days.  Incredibly, 991 listings were updated, a number that includes the cataloguing of 183 new Hutchinson bottles!  As of January 31, 2013, the grand total number of Hutchinsons catalogued has reached 17,497.  We will have no doubt passed the 17,500 mark by the time you read this (oops: today's mail just brought details on two beautiful Iowa Hutchinsons, boosting the grand total to 17,499.  At this rate, we'll hit 17,500 before I get this update posted!).  So, what is the source of all this new material? 

Since launching the HutchBook database we have been swamped with new information submitted via EMail and snail mail.  We are constantly receiving totally new listings, digital images, and bottle data where existing listings have missing details.  THANK YOU to everyone providing information and a reminder for everyone to continue doing so, as every submittal helps improve both the quantity and quality of the HutchBook database.

Typical of the information we have been receiving are several new Georgia and Tennessee listings submitted by Knoxville's Chad Cox.  We were both stunned and highly pleased when Chad EMailed us complete data along with photographs of numerous nice Hutchinsons we hadn't seen before.  Here are a few examples from Tennessee:

Full details on each of the illustrated Tennessee Hutchinsons are included in the HutchBook database.  To quickly access the listings for these four bottles, navigate to the Hutchinson Search page, highlight Tennessee in the "State or Province" field, key in 01-01-13 in the "New Listings Since" field, and click on the "Find Hutchinsons" button.   

January's significant HutchBook database growth was also due in part to going thru the newly published book Embossed Bottles, Jugs, and Go-Withs of ARKANSAS 1850 - 1930 by Johnnie Fletcher.  Comparing Johnnie's Arkansas Hutchinson listings with the HutchBook database listings provided an opportunity to correct several database errors, fill in numerous missing details, and catalog additional Arkansas Hutchinsons.  If you don't have a copy of Johnnie's new book yet, get one!  Ordering details are posted on the "Bottle Books For Sale" page in the Collecting section of 

The bulk of January's database growth is thanks to a major effort by Austin Fjerestad to compare the HutchBook Minnesota database listings with those included in his incredibly detailed new book, Minn. Soda Water Works: The Blob Top, Gravitators, Hutchinson and Hand Finished Crowns of Minnesota, Including Stoneware Spring Jugs, and Advertising, 1850 - 1920.  Austin devoted many hours to his review and submitted a detailed list of differences.  I then used Austin's list as a guideline for a similar data comparison.  Bottom line: the HutchBook database now includes considerably more details, several errors have been corrected, and no less than 114 additional Minnesota Hutchinsons have been catalogued!  The grand total from Minnesota has jumped from 506 at year end 2012, to 620 as of January 31, 2013.  We still have some fine tuning to do, but the end results of our combined efforts have been amazing.  Thank you, Austin!


We are continuing to revise, clarify, and simplify the instructions for using the "Hutchinson Search" engine.  Here's a quick link to the Hutchinson Search Help! page.  If you experience any problems when using the search engine, please send an EMail message to with the details.


The HutchBook Bottle Data Submittal Form has been updated.  We have received several completed forms via snail mail and they make it much easier to catalog newly identified Hutchinsons.  Adding the ability to EMail completed forms is still on the to-do list. 


None of the individual state/province/country Hutchinsons lists in .pdf format have been updated since they were initially posted in early September, 2012.  Posting updated versions is a high priority for February. 

In the meantime, you can utilize the Hutchinson Search engine to easily identify all changes since the previous list was posted.  Select the state/province/country for which you're seeking information, key the date the Hutchinson List was last published into the "Updates Since" field, and click the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  Using the Tennessee Hutchinsons pictured above as an example, select Tennessee, key 09-03-12 into the "Updates Since" field, click "Find Hutchinsons," and a list of all 16 Tennessee updates will be returned.


We have received several inquiries asking when additional images will start being added to the HutchBook database.  The answer is "soon."  Gathering, cropping, editing, and adding thousands of images isn't a simple task.  Please continue to be patient.


If you aren't regularly following Ferd Meyer's postings on his web site, you are missing a great opportunity to participate in an effort to breathe new life into our fantastic hobby.  Ferd continually adds highly informative new material (usually on a daily basis) on a wide variety of bottle-related topics.  In case you missed his Hutchinson-related postings following the FOHBC Expo in Reno, here's a link to the article, photos, and video he posted featuring Zang Wood narrating a description of his fantastic W. H. Hutchinson display: 

We have heard thru the grapevine that Zang will be celebrating a milestone birthday this month.  Even though he is reaching the 4/5 of a century mark, he isn't nearly as old as all of those beautiful Hutchinsons he collects!  Zang has asked that no one send him gifts, but I doubt he would turn down any colored or New Mexico Hutchinsons you might want to send his way.  Happy birthday, my friend!


Starting with the next issue of Hutchinson Highlights, we will be posting features about Hutchinson collectors.  If you would like to be featured, or know of someone you think should be featured, please let us know and we'll see if we can make it happen.


A multitude of Hutchinsons were engraved with star pictures.  Stars of various sizes and shapes (four point, five point, Star of David) can be found on the front, back, and bases of many Hutchinsons.  A quick search of the HutchBook database produced a list of 415 Hutchinsons that are either embossed with the word "STAR" or that feature pictured stars.  At some point we will likely put together a Hutchinson Highlights article on the enormous popularity of the star name and emblem.  For now, however, we just wanted to illustrate a few attractive Hutchinson star mavericks, particularly the unusual example on the far right.  This is a bottle that Zang Wood recently acquired.  What on earth is pictured on the bottle?  Keep reading...

To the right is a somewhat larger, close-up image of the plate mould embossing.  Look closely and note not only the outline of a star, but there's an embossed bottle with wings seemingly "flying" thru the center of the star.  Fine lines extending from the 10 sides of the star seem to add to the feeling of motion.  Good grief! 

Not only are we clueless as to this bottle's origin, Zang and I are at a total loss as to the point of the bottler's or engraver's artwork.  Does this engraving mean anything to you?  Have you seen anything similar to it engraved on a bottle?   


The illustrated DIAMOND / BOTTLING / WORKS / HOWELL & PARKER maverick Hutchinson turned up on GreedyBay last October.  It is now owned by nationally-known Hutchinson collector Zang Wood, and catalogued in the HutchBook database as unknown maverick # UN0010.5.  Utilize the Hutchinson Search engine to obtain additional details about the glass manufacturer, etc.

Database searches revealed the following information that may (or may not) be clues to the bottle's origin:

The DIAMOND BOTTLING WORKS name was utilized in Connecticut, Kansas, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin;

The HOWELL name appears on Hutchinsons from Indiana, New York, and Tennessee; and

The PARKER name appears on Hutchinsons in North Carolina and New York.

This information possibly narrows the search down to the states of Tennessee or New York.  Then again, those might be totally worthless clues. 

If you happen to know where this beautiful bottle originated, or are aware of bottlers named Howell and Parker who were partners, please EMail us at! 


New York continues to have a solid hold on second placed behind only Pennsylvania as the state with the most different Hutchinson bottles - 1449 as of today.  Even so, we continue to be amazed when rare New York Hutchinsons such as the illustrated pair fail to sell at what are, in our opinion, very attractive prices.

NY0953.5 - P. CLARIUS / PLEASANT PLAINS / STATEN-ISLAND / NEW YORK was listed on GreedyBay in early January and failed to draw any bids in spite of a $10.00 opening price. 

NY0864 - NORWICH BOTTLING / WORKS / NORWIOH / N.Y. is not only dark amber, it is an error bottle - NORWIOH should be NORWICH.  This bottle was listed on GreedyBay with an opening price of $150.00 and drew no bids.  It has since been re-listed at $100.00 and is still drawing no bids.

Both bottles coincidentally have small, open bubbles in almost exactly the same spot above the front plate moulds, but otherwise they appear to be nice specimens.  All to say it is obvious I am certainly not an authority on the desirability of New York Hutchinsons!

UPDATE 02-06-13: The amber "NORWIOH" drew three bids and sold for $128.50.  Congratulations to the new owner of a beautiful colored Hutchinson bottle!


The illustrated example of a NY1276 Hutchinson caught our eye when it was listed on GreedyBay last week.  This bottle was originally aqua and rated as Scarce, so it was disappointing to note the bottle had been irradiated and the glass turned what is, in our opinion, a sickly brown color.

Reading the seller's description that accompanied the listing, it was apparent he believed he had found a rare and valuable colored Hutchinson, not a bottle that had been nuked.  Rather than having the seller mislead anyone and then possibly be accused of fraud by a disgruntled buyer, we decided to notify him that the glass color had been artificially altered.  Someone else did the same thing and to the seller's credit, he added information about the glass being irradiated to the listing description, and also notified existing bidders that they were welcome to pull their bids.

I assumed mentioning the glass color had been artificially altered would cause existing bidders to cancel their bids, and likewise scare off any potential future bidders; wrong!  Assuming bidders read the notice and were capable of comprehending what they read, we are left wondering why the auction closed with eight bids (from six bidders) and the bottle sold for $41.00 + $8.00 P&H. 

At this point, all I can do is scratch my head and ask "Huh?"  What am I missing? 


Another on-line auction listing that caught our eye was GreedyBay 221180971702, the illustrated pair of attractive Hutchinsons.  The initial listing indicated both bottles originated in Michigan's Upper Peninsula "Copper Country," but soon the seller was informed the IRON RIVER / T. F. MACKMILLER / BOTTLING / WORKS bottle is actually from Iron River, Wisconsin, not Iron River, Michigan.  The listing was promptly corrected, and eventually the pair of bottles drew eight bids from six bidders and sold for $61.00 + $10.37 P&H.  End of story?  Not really, as I want to make a couple of points...

First, a simple search of the HutchBook database would have easily and quickly revealed the correct origin of the Iron River bottle as Hutchinson #WI0287, and also tipped the seller off that both bottles are considered Scarce.

Secondly, note the Iron River bottle's "Comments" section mention of "Wisconsin Soda Water Bottles # 2628."  That reference could have served as a clue that additional information could possibly be found about this bottle in Roger Peters' Wisconsin soda book.  The bottle is also listed and pictured on using Roger's numbering system.  Here's the historical information Roger published about this bottler (page 60):


In 1901 August H. Grimpo was listed as manager of the bottling works.  Starting in 1903 Theodore F. Mackmiller was listed as proprietor of the bottling works.  In addition to bottling soda water and Weiss beer, Mackmiller also sold wholesale liquors, cigars, ice, coal, cement blocks and offered drayage!  The bottling works may have been inactive from about 1912-1916.  The Iron River Bottling Works with Mackmiller as proprietor lasted until about 1935.

Yesterday's EMail included notification from a collector that he has an Iron River, Michigan Hutchinson we didn't have in the HutchBook database.  You guessed it; he was the winning bidder on this pair of bottles.  Sigh...


On a much more positive note, GreedyBay listing 140911313598 includes not only an example of OH0141, but a substantial quantity of historical information about The Cincinnati Soda Water & Ginger Ale Co.  The seller cited "Bottle books 2013" as their source.  That didn't ring any bells, so we EMailed them to ask for more information about the source of the material they published.  We were informed the source was  Okay, the Digger Odell Publications site is one we recognized.  A quick search revealed considerable information about this bottler.  Visit for more information! 


While searching the January 1917 issue of American Bottler magazine for information about Minnesota bottlers, Austin Fjerestad happened upon the following advertisements and thoughtfully sent copies for the Hutchinson Highlights, sensing the ads would be of interest to our readers.  Here are the ads:

Hmmm.  Both of these ads provide substantial clues to exactly when these two plants likely ceased using Hutchinson bottles and converted to crown tops.  We have catalogued four Hutchinson variants for American Bottling Works in Louisville, and two different Hutchinsons from Connersville, Indiana.  If only we could figure out who may have purchased these used Hutchinson bottles 96 years ago, we might know where to find some of them!

JAMES O. "PETE" DENNIS: 1926-2013

Yesterday's EMail brought a copy of the Oregon Bottle Collectors' Association's latest electronic newsletter and the sad news that Pete Dennis recently passed away.  Pete and I have been rivals for Oregon sodas since first meeting over 40 years ago.  Although we were frequently keen competitors for the same rare bottles, we were also friends who helped each other build our considerable collections.  A stop at Pete and Pearl's home in The Dalles, Oregon was better than visiting most of the museums in the Pacific Northwest.  Pete will be greatly missed.  Rest in peace.  


During February we will be updating the HutchBook database's list of glass manufacturers, deleting some that didn't manufacture Hutchinson bottles, and adding several that did. 

If you haven't searched the database for specific glass manufacturers, give it a try.  Click on the dialog box arrow and a list of manufacturers will appear.  Highlight the manufacturer's name and, for example, the state you're interested in, and then click the "Find Hutchinsons" button.  Presto, a list of Hutchinsons the glass manufacturer blew for bottlers in the selected state will be returned. 

Likewise, the geographical territory a glass manufacturer supplied can be "mapped" by searching the entire database on a manufacturer's name.  The Western Glass Manufacturing Company serves as an excellent example -- highlight their name, click on "Find Hutchinsons," and a list of the 142 known Hutchinsons with WGM marks is returned.  As expected, they manufactured Hutchinson bottles for many Colorado bottlers, but they also supplied bottles to several surrounding states.  Try out the listing search and see if you can figure out where their customers were located.

Speaking of glass manufacturers, we are closing this issue of "Hutchinson Highlights" with a request for information anyone may have concerning the source of the "H" maker's marks found on numerous western Hutchinsons.  These bottles have long been attributed to the Holt Glass Works in California, but recent research indicates this is incorrect.  Some are of the opinion the glass manufacturer may have been Abramson-Heunisch, a California firm in business 1898-1902.  We would like to see documentation from any primary source material confirming the origin of the "H" marks.  Although time consuming, it would be wonderful to accurately code all of the H-marked bottles to the correct glass manufacturer.  Thanks!

Posted: December 31, 2012

Goodbye 2012, Hello 2013...

Regular visitors are well aware no new material has been posted on this Home page since the Hutchinson Bottle Directory database was opened to the public August 1, 2012.  Rest assured we have not been twiddling our thumbs!  This has been by far the busiest fall we have experienced since formally initiating this project nine years ago tomorrow.  Wow, nine years; time really does fly when one is having fun, and the HutchBook initiative continues to be great fun! 

Here is a brief overview of HutchBook developments for 2012:

  • Clearly the major milestone event of the year was opening the Bottle Directory to the public August 1, 2012.  Usage of has skyrocketed since the database was launched and continues to steadily increase.  A sincere THANK YOU to everyone promoting the site, mentioning it to collector friends, and publishing magazine and web site articles about it.  Your support is appreciated!

  • The 2012 FOHBC Expo in Reno in late July provided an ideal opportunity to announce the impending launch of the database, and also reveal the list of initial recipients of the Hutchinson Bottle Collectors' Association Hall of Fame and Honor Roll Awards.  If you missed these major announcements, click on HBCA Hall of Fame or HBCA Honor Roll to review the lists.  The recipients are a "who's who" when it comes to Hutchinson collecting. 

  • At year end 2011 we had catalogued 17,011 different Hutchinson bottles.  The total has now grown to 17,314 and there are over 20 more in the EMail messages we have yet to process from yesterday and today.  They just keep coming! 

  • As expected, launch of the Hutchinson Bottle Directory database has generated a huge influx of EMail messages, snail mail letters, and telephone calls.  At one point we had over 100 unanswered EMail messages, a total that has been steadily pared down to a manageable number (for today, anyway!).  As a result of additional input received since September first, we have keyed and uploaded changes to 1,001 listings as of today.  Those 1,001 changes include the cataloguing of 221 totally new Hutchinsons!  Since the first of December we have been keying and uploading all changes on a daily basis, an approach that is working well.

  • We added information about two newly published bottle books in 2012.  Be sure to check out the listings for Austin Fjerestad's book on Minnesota sodas, and Johnnie Fletcher's book on Arkansas bottles.  Both of these volumes are monumental efforts and major contributions to our hobby's body of literature. 

Here's what to expect in 2013:

  • We plan to expand the instructions for use of the Hutchinson Search engine. 

  • In addition to continuously updating the HutchBook database and cataloguing newly identified Hutchinsons, we are steadily gathering and preparing bottle images for addition to the site.  We will begin adding thousands of images (Phase III of the HutchBook project) to the site early in 2013.

  • HBCA membership growth has been minimal during 2012.  We plan to flesh out more of the HBCA membership benefits, e.g. collector contact information, during 2013.  In the meantime, we are granting all current Hutchinson Bottle Collectors' Association members a free year's membership for 2013.  

  • As time permits, we will again post "feature" Home page articles about specific bottles, collecting trends, Hutchinson collector profiles, and other interesting topics.

Lastly for now, here are four of our favorite Hutchinsons seen in 2012:

Left to right, these are:

  • CA0093: MORIMOTO SODA WORKS / (Japanese name MORIMOTO in Chinese) / FRESNO, CAL.  There are four Morimoto Hutchinson variants from Fresno.  One has to admire a Hutchinson with Chinese embossing of a Japanese name!

  • PA2360.5: UNION BOTTLING WORKS / REGISTERED / PITTSBURG, PA.  This beautiful green Hutchinson is one of several colored bottles that recently sold on GreedyBay. 

  • UN0039: VICTOR SODA.  We have yet to identify the origin of this interesting maverick.  If you haven't reviewed the unknown maverick listings recently, please utilize the Hutchinson Search engine and search on "Unknown Country" in the Country list.  Please help us identify the unknown maverick Hutchinsons!

  • NJ0126.5: JACOB WIDMAN & CO. / CEMENTON / N. J. / REGISTERED (near base).  There are far more Hutchinsons with embossing errors than we ever imagined.  We have identified 355 thus far, and the list is growing.  This example embossed Cementon, N.J. is one of our favorites for 2012.  So, what's the error?  Check out NJ0126.5 to find out!