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Criers

CRIERS

"Some of the nicest bottles are often only in pieces".

 

"BAKER & CUTTING / GLASS & PICKLE MFRS. / SAN FRANCISCO" circa 1859 only.

If you were to ask me what the ultimate early Western bottle is, without any question this would be it.  The first one was excauvated  from a ten ft. deep 1850s-60s residental privy along with several other types of cathedral pickles, all broken. The amber one was found in a privy to a large boarding house.  It was laying all there in place and crushed by a tea pot!

 With the California Gold Rush came a need for glass bottles. These were blown by one of San Franisco's first glass houses in an attempt to bottle food products. The glass house failed after only a few months in opperation due to their inferiour glass product. This glass was extremely fragile and prone to cracking & breakage due to the poor quality of materials & workmenship. Who would of ever imagined back then that such a screw-up would be worshiped by collectors some 150 years later.

I've dug these in amber, teal, aqua, and various shades of green,  all have been busted. The first is a stunning deep yellow green, whittled, sparkly and has tons of tiny seed bubbles.  The second is golden amber with millions of seed bubbles, clean sparkly glass. There is only one intact known example of this bottle, it's pale aqua.

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AND ANOTHER

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 "BARKHOUSE BROS. / GOLD DUST / KENTUCKY BOURBON / JOHN VAN BERGEN & CO. / SOLE AGENTS" circa 1871-74

One of the most beautiful embossed Western 5ths is the Gold Dust.  This variant is usually seen in a medium amber color. They range in shades of deep chocolate to pure yellow, olive and green. The Saloon keepers privy pit that this shard came from had nine of these busted. Two were freshly broken by a bull dozer with one being pure green.
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"LACOUR'S SARSAPARIPHERE BITTERS" circa1864-68

Extremely rare and highly desirable best describes this great Western bitters that comes in a wide variety of colors including shades of green, amber, aqua and even puce. This one was super crude, grass green and has millions of bubbles. 20-30 known.

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"TRADE MARK / A.P. / NEW ALMADEN / VICHY WATER / CALIFORNIA" circa 1868

 Now these are sure rare and what a impressive large bottle. A recent discovery from a ten ft. deep privy is this extremely rare Western water bottle. Blown in a beautiful deep yellow green by the San Francisco Glass Works in the 1860s. This one was heavily hammer whittled, what a killer color !!! 

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"CALIFORNIA CLUB HOUSE / PURE BOURBON / IMPORTED ONLY BY / JNO. C. MORRISON, JR. / 316 SAC. ST. S.F."  circa 1872-74.

This highly prized rare 5th is considered by many to be the top Western whiskey. They come in shades of amber, olive and two known that are pure green. Less than 10 known.

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"CASSIN,S / GRAPE BRANDY / BITTERS" circa 1866-68

 Perhaps the most attractive and desirable of all the Western bitters are the Cassin's. Blown at the San Francisco Glass Works in the 1860s, this unique shaped bottle comes in a wide variety of colors including: aqua, amber, black glass, various shades of green and olive amber. The rich blue aqua as seen here and black glass are the rarest colors. Few of these have survived the years due to their  fragile corners and odd shape. The earliest and rarest variant produced in 1866  had very fragile corners so the mold was re-designed in 1867  to try and strengthen the bottle. It's interesting to note that a mint green example was found inside an old piano that originated from San Francisco.  There are less than 20 intact examples known to exist in any condition.

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 "NAPA SODA" circa 1860. 

An extremely rare Napa soda in a deep reddish puce color.  This one was recovered form Embarcadero Center Four in San Francisco. It was found in the bay fill about twenty feet below street level next to an old wooden pier piling. There are no known intact examples of this bottle.

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"A.P. BRAYTON & CO. / SAN FRANCISCO CAL." circa 1863-64. 

 An extremely rare Western canning jar is the A.P. Brayton with less than eight known in any condition. They come in  pint, quart and half gallon sizes, some are iron pontiled. Blown by the San Francisco Glass Works, it was one of the earliest jars they made. Brayton was in the cast iron business and it's  likely he made the closures for these jars too. People have theorized what the closures for these jars looked like but this heavy cast iron lugged ring was dug with the jar. There were two of these busted in the pit this half gallon shard was recovered from.

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"EVANS & O'BRIEN / NO 222 / MAIN ST. / STOCKTON" circa 1868-70.

An extremely rare and desirable whiskey from the West is the "Evans & O'Brien" A sixth in size, their known in shades of amber and pure green. Less than 10 known

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"BARRY & PATTEN / 116 & 118 / MONTGOMERY ST. / SAN FRANCISCO" circa 1850-52

One of the real early pioneer California Gold Rush bottles is the Barry & Patten. About a pint in capacity and only known in dark olive green with an iron pontil. Only 3 known to exist, one is damage free.

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"OLD MAN'S / STOMACH BITTERS / MARCUS SASS" circa 1876 only.

Talk about rare, this Western square fits the bill. Unknown until the 1990s one of these bottles surfaced from the Red Bluff area. Since then only one other intact example is known to exsist among collectors that came from the Bay Area. A product of the Pacific Glass Works and only known in this darker amber color, circa 1876 only. 2 known.

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©2005 Saturday, September 20, 2014