Joel B. Miller Bottle Stopper

U.S. Patent Number: 245,199                      Patented: August 2, 1881

This patent application was filed May 20, 1880 by Mrs. Thressa Miller, administratrix for Joel B. Miller, deceased, and specified:

I, Joel B. Miller, deceased, late of KingstonNew York, did invent a new and useful Improvement in Bottle-Stoppers…of which…

Figure 1 is a sectional face view of the improved bottle-stopper.  Fig. 2 is a side view thereof.

This invention relates to a new suspended internal bottle-stopper; and it consists, first, in combining the disk-shaped inner stopper with a spring bail or handle that is capable of holding the stopper properly in position and prevents it slipping into the hold of the bottle.

The invention also consists in supplying said bottle-stopper with an additional upper disk for interposing a shield between the mouth of the bottle and the stopper, to prevent impurities from reaching the stopper itself; also, in hinging the spring-bail to the flat or disk-shaped stopper…

In the accompanying drawings, the letter A represents the flat or disk-shaped valve or stopper, which is made of India-rubber or equivalent material and held on a stem, B, that is preferably made of wire, and that forms an elongated eye, C, at its upper part.  The lower end or ends of the stem B are secured in a metal ball or plate, D, that is in contact with the lower surface of the disk-shaped valve A.  This ball or plate D is of such size as to prevent the withdrawal of the stopper or disk-shaped valve from the bottle after the same has been inserted, but it will not interfere with its ready introduction into the bottle.

Into the eye C are hooked the ends of a centrally-contracted spring-loop, E, which has above the contraction a an upper enlargement, b, and below said contraction a a lower enlargement, d...The hooks or eyes, e e, at the open lower end of the spring-loop E, are arranged to freely receive the upper cross-bar of the elongated eye C.

Above the stopper or disk-shaped valve A, and belong the elongated eye C, is attached to the stem B a smaller disk, F, preferably or rubber or other elastic material, capable of entering the mouth of the bottle and of shielding the stopper or disk-shaped valve, so that impurities cannot reach it.  A collar, f, supports the disk F on the disk A.


This patent is clearly an improved version of Joel B. Miller’s 1874 patent.  Most likely, Charles G. Hutchinson’s use of a rubber gasket stopper influenced Miller’s modifications.  The patent was assigned to Henry W. Putnam of Bennington, Vermont.  There is no evidence Putnam achieved any marketing success with this closure. 

Note: See Miller’s 1874 patent for his original bottle-stopper design.