Archive for July, 2010

Blowpipes: Northwest Ohio Glassmaking in the Gas Boom of the 1880’s

July 21, 2010

Last month I reviewed a book by Jack Paquette, The Glassmakers Revisited. This led me to another book by Jack, Blowpipes: Northwest Ohio Glassmaking in the Gas Boom of the 1880’s.  Printed in 2002. 557 pages.

Let me begin by telling you what a Blowpipe is, it was used in the bottle manufacturing process and a person would place a molten blob of glass on the end and blow into the pipe to form the bottle.  The other thing is the Gas Boom; pockets of natural gas were discovered in Ohio in the 1800’s. Factories that had been in the Eastern United States saw this natural gas as a free source of power for their factories. Many companies moved to the mid-west and several new companies opened.  This book discusses the over 70 glass companies that opened in Ohio during this time. It covers the history of those glass manufacturers.

Also discussed in the book is the 19th century glassmaking techniques, children in the glass making industry, Fostoria Glass, Libbey Glass, Owens Glass and the Owens Bottle  Machine Company and many other lesser known glass manufacturers.

The book is very interesting and has detailed descriptions of the companies and the glass making techniques of the time. Any collector of early American bottles will find this a useful tool to identify bottles as well as learn some of the history of how the bottle was made and about the manufacturing company.  Also, anyone wanting to learn about the early glass companies in America will find this book very useful.

This book is still in print.  It can be ordered in paper back or hard back versions from the publisher, Xlibris (a division of Random House), toll-free at 1-888-795-4274, or on line at either or


The Big Drink

July 16, 2010

I have gotten behind on my summer reading!  I’ve been so busy, plus I have found SO many great books recently concerning bottles, collecting or Coca-Cola. I have a huge stack of books I want to share with you.

            At the recent Coca-Cola Collectors Club Convention I found several MORE books.  One of them is ‘The Big Drink, The Story of Coca-Cola’ by E.J. Kahn Jr., written in 1960. 174 pages.

            The book is based on a series of articles that Mr. Kahn had written for The New Yorker magazine.

            Although his humorous views are a bit dated now, it is a great look into the times and peak of the Coca-Cola Company.

            Some things he covers are:

  • How Coke was available world wide, even in the jungles of South America, where people had not heard of the United States, but knew what Coca-Cola was.


  • Coca-Cola in World War II, how it reminded troops of home and how it was able to get a foothold and expand around the world.


  • How some countries could not get enough Coca-Cola, while others outlawed Coca-Cola from being sold in their country.


  • How many Coca-Cola Bottlers became the most important businessman in town


  • Many of the problems Coca-Cola had with imitators, the image perceived by many in the early years of any soda bottler as producing an unclean and unsanitary product.


  • 7x, the secret ingredient in Coca-Cola


  • A humorous and brief history of the Coca-Cola bottle

 This book is a classic. It has inspired other books such as Mark Pendergrast, author of: For God, Country and Coca-Cola mentioned in his first edition that E.J. Kahn was a huge influence on him and his book.

 Look for the book online. I know Amazon has a few available. Check out your favorite used book site and track this book down. Maybe it will inspire you to write a book!

Bad Links

July 15, 2010

I have been having issues with two Links I have under ‘Great Links’ One for the Soda Collectibles magazine and the other, Coca-Cola Collectibles magazine.    The issue isn’t with my software and I am stumped. A work around I found is if you click the link, and it takes you to an error message of ‘unable to connect’, I use the ‘Back’ button, come back to my blog and hit the link again for the magazine(s). It then takes me right to the site.   So if you have problems getting to the links, try that.

Thanks and sorry for the confusion with those two links.

2010 Coca-Cola Club Convention

July 15, 2010

The 2010 Convention was held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with over 600 people attending this year.  We even had people from Australia and Japan. It was a great week, seeing old friends, making new friends and picking up a few Coca-Cola collectibles to add to our collection.

    The first official event was the Business Meeting.  I was surprised when they called out my name as 1st Place winner for the 2010 Newsletter Essay Contest. I had submitted an article for the newsletter on Sprite and never heard back from them about it. Also covered in the meeting was future Convention locations and general business of the Club.

     Every night we had ‘Room Hopping’. People bring items to sell from their room, display the items in the room, prop open the door and let the fun begin, a unique and odd practice of wondering from hotel room to hotel room looking for Coca-Cola items to purchase and take home. I found a few great bottles and several books I had been looking for. (I will be doing book reviews on those books soon).

            Of course we have an Opening Party where we can see everyone and a banquet at the end of the week.

            In between those two events we have seminars, silent auction and a live auction. We had close to 300 items in the auction. A lot of great pieces went up and some items went cheap this year too.

            On the last day we had a Memorabilia Show and Sale open to the public. We had many local people come out from the Milwaukee area and sales were good.  I sold several copies of my book too.

            The 2011 Convention will be held in Atlanta, Georgia. When the convention is in Atlanta we usually have over 1000 people attend. If you want to be there, look into joining the Coca-Cola Collectors Club!

   Hope to see you in 2011!

Schmidt Coca-Cola Memorabilia Museum

July 15, 2010

On our way to the 2010 Coca-Cola Club Convention we were able to stop and tour the museum.

 Located in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, it is an amazing collection of Coca-Cola items. From some of the earliest paper ads to the vending machines of the 1970’s, you will see a little of everything here, porcelain signs, light up signs, trucks, crates, BOTTLES, festoons, clocks, a side of an old barn that has a Coca-Cola ad painted on it, etc. This collection is from the Schmidt Family collection. They ran the Coca-Cola Bottling plant in Elizabethtown from 1920 to 1999.

 The collection simply started as the Schmidt family began to look for Coca-Cola memorabilia to decorate the Bottling Plant office. The collection grew and by 1976 they built space for the items to go in.

 The current museum was completed in 2005 and has 32,000 square feet of display area.

They also have a working soda fountain where you can get a REAL Cherry Coke and also a gift shop. Be sure and look for my book ‘The Coca-Cola Bottle’ in the gift shop.

The Museum is conveniently located off I-65. Look for the signs.

 Here is the address and website

109 Buffalo Creek Dr. Elizabethtown, KY 42701-7518 Phone (270) 234-1100

To see some pictures I took-go here:

Coca-Cola Club Convention

July 12, 2010

I am still trying to unpack from our trip to Milwaukee for the Coca-Cola Club Convention.   Check out this article, photos and video from the local Milwaukee Newspaper.  It gives you an idea what a Convention is like.

I’m Back

July 12, 2010

Hello everyone,

I am back from the Coca-Cola Collectors Club Convention!  It has been a wild 10 days!   So much happened in that time period I am still trying to sort it all out.  I will be posting things about the Convention and what I saw over the next week or so.  Right now I have 10 days worth of laundry, emails, mail, etc. to go through.

   I will say the Convention was great! It is always fun to see friends from around the U.S. and the world, talk and catch up, plus see some wonderful Coca-Cola items.

More to come soon!

The Coca-Cola Bottle book Update

July 1, 2010

For those of you who have been emailing and asking about my book sales: Sales have been in 8 Countries and 31 States.  I am currently working on a deal with a Museum Gift Shop to start carrying my book. Hopefully that will work out!  I temporarily stopped selling my book on eBay while I do inventory and figure out exactly how many books I have left.  I’ve sold a little over half of my stock in a year. Not bad considering my shoe string budget for advertising and promoting.

Max Headroom and Coca-Cola

July 1, 2010

If you were around in the mid 1980’s you might remember those M-M-M-Max Headroom commercials for Coca-Cola. You either hated them OR loved them OR like me someplace in-between.  I know a few Coca-Cola Collectors that look for any Max Headroom items.   I remember the commercials but I also remembered that Max Headroom started as a TV Show!  I had watched a few episodes when it came on and thinking ‘This isn’t going to last long’. And it didn’t as a show but Coca-Cola picked it up and used Max to help promote New Coke.  Which didn’t last long either.  So you Max Headroom fans might like to know the TV Show is coming out on DVD!  I am both shocked and surprised! The good people at Shout Factory (who brought us Freaks and Geeks on DVD, my favorite TV Show. AND brought back several Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass albums on CD) decided to bring us Max Headroom. Below is the link to Shout Factory release of Max Headroom DVD. Check it out!