Wisconsin antique bottle and advertising club
Henry W. Chamberlain Stoneware

Henry W. Chamberlain Stoneware

Made at the Milwaukee Stoneware Factory, possibly by O.F. Baker

In our collecting hobby, we sometimes encounter artifacts that seemingly are the only remaining evidence of a past person’s life. Usually with subsequent research from the name, location, or approximate date of the bottle, jug, or other item, we are able to assemble a story about the original owner. We do this by studying old city directories, business organization listings of the time, genealogies, census records, and land ownership documents.
Such is the case of one Henry W. Chamberlain of Sheboygan County Wisconsin in the 1850’s. I acquired a salt glazed jar marked “H. W. Chamberlain Sheboygan Wis” in the 1980’s from an avid auction goer in Menomonee Falls. Then in 2002, I acquired a decorated, salt glazed pitcher with the same mark from Bob Markiewicz that he had just purchased and I was able to seize the opportunity before Bob got too attached to the pitcher. Accompanying the pitcher was a 1997 letter from Janice Hildebrand, a well known author of Sheboygan area history.
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Author: Henry Hecker
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J.F. Dallinger Milwaukee and Tacoma

J.F. Dallinger Milwaukee and Tacoma

The J.F. Dallinger hutch from Milwaukee is relatively rare. Recently, a nearly identical variety of this bottle appeared on eBay except that it was embossed with the city of Tacoma, Washington instead of Milwaukee. Then another eBay listing appeared for the Milwaukee variety with a paper label. It was being sold by a different Tacoma area seller who was a descendant of Joseph Dallinger. The seller had a pair of Dallinger Milwaukee bottles with paper labels that had passed down in his family. They were generic stock labels without Dallinger’s name printed on them.
This article gives some background on Joseph Dallinger’s soda business which lasted just a couple of years in the Milwaukee and Tacoma.
Author: Bob Libbey
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Blossom's Badger Ale

Blossom's Badger Ale

Even by national standards the Blossoms Badger Ale bottle is simply a fantastic example of an early American ale. It was made by Lancaster Glass Company in New York around 1849 to 1851. This article tells the story of the discovery a new Blossom’s Badger Ale variety, how it was hunted for many years and finally acquired and restored by a club member. One intact variety, one restored and some shards prove that there were at least four varieties of embossed bottles used by this large and successful brewery. It seems likely that there are still others waiting to be discovered.
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Author: Peter Maas
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Young America Bitters

Young America Bitters

Overlooked Milwaukee Bitters

This bottle is embossed YOUNG AMERICA / STOMACH BITTERS / P RINDSKOPF & BRO on three panels. Phillip Rindskopf and his brother Louis were wholesale wine and liquor dealers at 277 E Water St Milwaukee from 1862 to 1878, but Phillip died in 1867 so this bottle is probably from the Civil war period. It is listed in Carlyn Ring’s book For Bitters Only but was not attributed to a city. It has flown under the radar of Wisconsin collectors as it was not widely known to be a Wisconsin bitters.
Author: Peter Maas
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M. Kom Mineral Water / Great Western

M. Kom Mineral Water / Great Western

Wisconsin’s earliest bottle?

When this bottle was dug in Kenosha there was some speculation that it could be a Wisconsin or Illinois bottle. It seemed improbable given the color and the fact that it has the look of an 1840’s bottle. When another example turned up in Ashippun Wisconsin northwest of Milwaukee research efforts intensified but still no hard evidence was found. An article in the May-June 2014 edition of Bottles & Extras by Tod von Mechow speculated that it could be Wisconsin. Definitive proof finally surfaced in an advertisement in an obscure all-German Milwaukee newspaper. The March 1850 ad identified it as Michael Kom’s Lemon Mineral Water which he bottled on Huron Street in Milwaukee. This just might be Wisconsin’s earliest embossed bottle. Others from about the same time period include the Taylor & Bothers’ cobalt sided soda and Blossom’s Badger black glass ale. Click on the photo to read the full article.
Author: Peter Maas
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Berliner Magen Bitters – The Zien Bothers Co.

Berliner Magen Bitters – The Zien Bothers Co.

The flagship product for the Zien brothers Co. was their Berliner Magen Bitters brand which was marketed mainly in the Midwest.   They bottled the product in amber square bottles embossed BERLINER MAGAN BITTERS on one panel.  They also promoted the brand with advertising shot glasses with at least 9 varieties known.  There is an advertising meerschaum pipe with a detailed image of the bottle which is a very unusual advertising item.  They are quite rare and another Milwaukee whiskey bottler, Joseph Dudenhoefer also used this type of advertising pipe.

Author: Peter Maas
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Chase Valley Glass Co.

Chase Valley Glass Co.

Wisconsin's first bottle manufacturer

The opening Chase Valley Glass Company marked the beginning of a 30-year era of glass manufacturing in Milwaukee. Although the Chase Valley works operated only one brief season, four successive glassworks operated at the same location. The Chase Valley glassworks also left behind a rich legacy of bottles and flasks for collectors. Typical embossing include:

C Co. 2 MILW
C.V.G. Co MILW
C.V. No 2 MILW (sometimes with mold number in the center)
C.V. No 1 MILW (sometimes with mold number in the center)

This article describes the history of Wisconsin's first glassworks and the bottles and other products they produced.
Author: Peter Maas
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From The Bottom to Fame - One Beer Bottle's Story

From The Bottom to Fame - One Beer Bottle's Story

This is the story of how an antique bottle from the Fred Miller Brewing Company became the centerpiece of a national advertising campaign in 2007. When club member Sid Hatch showed all of his Miller blob beer bottles to the marketing group they selected one bottle because of the similarity of the embossing to the modern branding. It just happened to be a very rare mold variety.
Author: Sid Hatch
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