Glenn Poch's Bottle Collecting Newsletter 11

May/June 1996
Newsletter #11


Commercial and home preservation of food, evolved during the
early to mid-1800s.  The
need for preserved food was driven by world-wide urbanization,
exploration and warfare.  In
addition, countries such as the United States, Canada, Germany,
France, and Australia had
seasonal surpluses of agricultural crops which could then be
conveniently used throughout the
Storage containers gradually were redesigned to preserve the food
as well.  These early
food containers could be sealed to exclude air, a known factor in
food spoilage, although the
microorganisms that are the direct cause of food loss were not
discovered until the late 1800s.
The earliest preserving jars were generally known as fruit jars,
in part to reflect the fact
that the most commonly preserved foods were fruit, not vegetables,
not meat.  Fruits are often
abundant on a seasonable basis, and most important are chemically
acidic and high in sugar.  Acid
conditions and sugar discourage harmful bacterial and mold growth.
Although many of the 19th century jars were successful in
preventing biological spoilage,
chemical deterioration can continue, especially in the presence of
sunlight.  Early jar manufacturers
used colored glass (such as amber) to attempt to reduce color and
taste loss.
Although fruit jars are still manufactured today, the golden age
of home preservation using
fruit jars spans the period of 1860 to 1945.  Of course today food
preservation is based mostly on
refrigeration, freezing and commercial canning.  World-wide
transportation development has also
provided us with fresh foods outside their traditional seasonal

Courtesy: Jerry McCann.


Mansfield Ohio (show report)

Well Mansfield was a good show as usual, many new dealers made this show
well attended with a general line of bottles including many early quality
pieces.  The weather did not help out, showering the few outdoor dealers
and making it difficult to walk from building to building but dealers
were still spending along with the public. Several quality bitters were
for sale including a Russ's lady's leg bitters, Kelly's Cabin's, and many
early pontiled bitters, many milk bottles in ambers and greens, flasks in
off colors, and several pontiled colored sodas.  This is a great show to
plan on attending next year, there is always around 300 tables +, so
see you their next year!


Midwestern Glass

the following paragraph is an excerpt from the magazine Antiques March 1965:

"The Midwest became early, and remains today, one of the most important
glassmaking centers in the country.  Ohio was making blown glass as early
as 1814, and developed distinctive pattern-molded types that have long
been beloved of of collectors.  Blown glass was made in Michigan in
1835.  Later in the century pressed glass was produced in all the six
states that once made up the Northwest Territory, and so were various
types of art glass before and after 1900." 
Midwest glass has established itself as glass with expert workmanship.
Many of the free blown pieces are swirled with incredible detail, the
ribs having equal seperation between each other and a consitant pattern
througout the piece.  A number of similar free-blown swirl bottles are
surfacing in antique shops and shows, these are normaly found in amber
and sometimes aqua, they are not very old (30yrs-present) and are blown
in Mexico.  To the average collector some of the pieces are fairly well
done and could be mistaken, their are a few details that distinguish the
old from the new: look at the top does it flair out around the neck, a
true midwest piece almost alwalys has a small ring lip that is fairly
uniform: look at the pontil mark is it strange looking flat or new
looking? Is there no evidence of the swirls approaching the pontil? 
Midwest pieces normally had the swirl go into the pontil.  look at the
general uniformity of the piece is it round?  and alwalys check for wear in
all your pieces.

Some of the glass houses in Ohio:  Zanesville, Mantua, White, Kent, &

Don't forget orginal stories and articles are needed, please help out!

Bottle Auctions (Downfall to the hobby or Uplifting events?)

I know I written on this subject before but I never did get any feedback
from anyone, so let me know your attitude towards them!


Bottle Auctions provide a chance for all individuals to buy bottles that
they may not normally have the chance to find, you now don't have to
drive or fly out to bottles shows in other states to add to your
collection.  Many quality pieces are offered for sale and sometimes you
can get a bargin (usually something that has damage or stain).  It is
completely up to you if you want to obtain an item, you just have to bid
higher - unlike a show where it may be swaped up right in front of you
and your only recourse is to knock the person out with a shovel and steal
it from him.  Bottle auctions also leave behind a good refernce source to
look at and learn from, they make for easy disposing of collections and
quality pieces that can bring in a substanital amount of money.


Bottle Auctions are depleating the shows of quality bottles, most people
find a scarce bottle and just assume to put it up in auction.  Why?
because they usually will pay more, which brings up the fact that bottle
auctions are driving up the prices of bottles; not only are the scarce
bottles not being found at shows any more but their is now a record of
what was paid for them and at the next auction if the bottle brought
$1000 last time, it will be recommend that it should bring $1000-1200
this time, why? they paid it last time didn't they?  Auction catalogs
cost an average of $20, while they might justify the amount as a
reference source (nice pictures might I add) if one is going to receive
all of the catalogs from two or three auction houses this could cost alot
of money: case in point - lets say 5 auctions/year times 3 auction houses
is fifteen catalogs or $300, this is money that is being taken away from
your ability to add to the collection, along with any purcase you make
you will also spend 10% and shipping.  Consigners have it no better with
a fee of 10-20% being extracted from them, obviously the auction houses
like this, they are making 20-30% on one bottle!  Often people are
disaponited when they recieve the bottle, it may have some small flaw not
described whether purposely or not, or the color may not have photograhed
right, their is no subsitute to actually handling the bottle.  Minimum
bids are also set sometimes too high which does not warrent the
purchasing of the bottle especially after you add all of the buyers fee
and S&H.

let me know your thoughts on bottle auctions.
send comments to

I am looking for help in researching a bottle that I recently bought at the
Baltimore Bottle Show.  The bottle is 7 and 1/2 inches tall, a beautiful
citrus color, bimal, embossed with the word "SREBRENICA", has no panels, and
steaply sloping shoulders compared to most other medicine bottles.  I looked
in all my bottle books and couldn't find anything on it. It is one of the
nicer bottles in my collection and I would like to know more about it.  I paid
$25 for it, mostly because of the nice color. Can anyone out there help me
with this?

Also, if anyone has bottle books that they are willing to sell at a reasonable
price, please contact me.  My address is

Don't Forget - For Sale/Wanted ad's are free
(let me know if I forgot you)

Wanted: Bottles of fine quality, Bitters, Inks, Flasks, Scents etc.

For Sale:

Ohio Glassworks Paperweight Flint Glass, (e-mail for more info) $95-
Whiskey Gun amber original cap closure, ground top -nice $80-
Witch Ball clear with white coinspots 1880's $75-
Peach Flow darner $180-
Peach Flow pear $170-
Peach Flow pear with world's fair 1893 engraved $195-
clear swirl scent ribbed - $70-
many philadephia soda's (e-mail for more info) $16-40
email :

Happy Collecting!

let me know your finds!!!


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