Member Club F.O.H.B.C.                                                                                    Written By Allan C. Holden                                                                                                      October 2017

  This Month’s October Meeting 10-10-17

Hello Friends!

I f for some reason you missed the last meeting . . . well, perhaps you had a very good reason. Maybe you had to stay home and trim your pet turtle’s toenails? Well, please don’t get upset with me when you hear this . . . we went for pizza! Not my fault! I didn’t know until the last minute. . . well after the newsletter was mailed.

    Please understand, in this world filled with uncertainty, especially regarding old Confederate monuments, General Parker needs to stay one step ahead of the malcontents! It’s not that the old boy can’t defend himself, it’s just that he has better things to do . . . and much of that can be done at Bimbos!

    We did have a good turnout for the last meeting. Here are the names on the sign-up sheet: Ed Nickerson, Kelly Bobbitt, John Winkler, Chuck Parker, Mary Hamilton, Scott Hendrichsen, Kevin Siegfried, Tim Hayes, Rob Knolle, Jean Bogard, Vincent Grossi and Al Holden.

    That’s not too bad for the first meeting of our new season. . . especially without the pizza party being pre- announced.

I must say we also saw a good number of acquired summertime treasures on display! Kevin jumped in right at the start of the meeting helping me with the camera work. He didn’t take the time to use my little name cards, but he explained to me a failsafe way to recall everything. It really was a clever plan, but to be on the safe side, I figured I would make some notes when I got home . . . but I didn’t, and yes it is all a little foggy!

Scott Hendrichsen has been busy digging this summer! I counted two-dozen antique bottles on the table that he recently dug! Two of the bottles were a matching pair of W.B. Church Druggist Marshall Mich., Estd 1865.

I did find mention of Doctor W.B. Church in the June 20, 1890 addition of the Marshall Statesman in the local jottings, section which read,
“Last Sunday Dr. W. B. Church removed a large ovarian abscess from Mrs. John Gray. Although it was understood to all, that the chances of her recovery were comparatively few, yet the operation was very successful, and Mrs. Gray's steadily improving and it now seems certain that she will regain her health completely.”

 I love reading the old newspapers because you really found out the local news! Here is another story in the 6/20/1890 Marshall Statesman

“Mrs. Harry Busloy, who resides at No. 68 East Main Street, has been suffering from rheumatism in her foot for a long time and to ease the pain Dr. W.B. Church has had her place morphine poultices upon the diseased member. Saturday afternoon Mrs. Busley procured a package of the drug at one of our drug stores and placed a portion of it on her foot. She threw the remainder of the package into the drawer in which she keeps her medicines. In doing this she lost the label off the medicine. The pain in her foot did not cease and in a little while the lady took what she supposed was a dose of quinine but what proved to be a dose of morphine. Feeling sleepy she laid down on the bed and in a few moments was unconscious from the effects of the poison. A short time afterward, one of the members of the household went to her room and finding her asleep tried to wake her but could not rouse the lady. The family at once became alarmed and a physician was summoned. Drs. Gillette and Kimbal at once responded to the call and with the aid of a stomach pump succeeded in remove the morphine from her stomach and rousing the lady from what in a few minutes would have been her last sleep had it not been for the efforts of the physicians. Mrs. Busley is today doing nicely and is almost recovered from her nearly fatal accident.”

When you read these papers they may transition from this story about Mrs. Busley, and without warning you are blindsided with a slick hustle; “A fortunate Woman, Mrs. Mary L. Haker, of Ovid, Mich., has reason to be very thankful. She was a great sufferer from heart disease for years! She was short of breath, had hungry spells, pain in her side, fluttering, faintness, etc . . . After taking two bottles of Dr. Miles' New Heart Cure, she says: "I am better than I have been for over 20 years. My mind and eyesight have improved wonderfully. I advise all persons thus afflicted to use this great remedy."

I listen to Rush Limbaugh at work, but I mute the radio when a customer come in the door, so I usually only hear bits and pieces. The last few years he has started doing much of his sponsor’s advertising himself during his show. He has a way of sneaking into an advertising plug without warning, and that tactic annoys me to no end. In fact it has all but driven me away. Sean Hannity tries to do it as well, but compared to Limbaugh he is a rank amateur and he cannot pull it off.

Scott also displayed a “Dr. J. Blackman’s Genuine Healing Balsam.” How can you not love this stuff!

Another interesting bottle Scott brought to the meeting was a
“Grandine & Hindman Pharmacist, Battle Creek MI.”    
I can tell you one thing for sure, Battle Creek druggist bottles can be very challenging to track down! I did learn, through an obituary that I found, a man named George Sherman Cook, worked for Grandine & Hindman. Before working in Battle Creek, he was employed by “ Farrand & Williams” in Detroit. For some of you collectors that brings to mind a beautiful, tall, cobalt-blue bottle with the monogram design on the front.

With many of the antique bottle Internet searches, Google will bring up The Kalamazoo Antique Bottle Club newsletter! No wonder I get so many calls!

          Another small druggist bottle Scott showed us was a G.H. Green MD. Druggist, Marshall, Mich. I found Doctor Green mentioned in the 1894 Marshall Statesman in the local jottings column. In reading that article I found this unrelated piece;
“ Mr. and Mrs. L C. Moore of Chicago, lost an infant son last week. They went out riding and left the child in care of a nurse and came home to find that the child had died suddenly of heart failure.”

Does this sound to you like a case of leaving a child in the care of Mrs Winslow’s Soothing Syrup?
 I think it does!

Here is another article from the June 8th 1894 Marshall Statesman; “A one-armed tramp named Flack, who had just been liberated from the county jail, was run over by the baggage car on train No. 5 on the M. C. R. R. last Friday afternoon and killed. The train was just pulling out of the station and Flack, who was into liquor, either fell off or was pushed off the front platform of the car by a trainman.

The evidence taken before Coroner Merrill's jury was conflicting; on this point and a verdict to the effect that the man was killed by being run over by the cars was rendered, and no one either blamed or exonerated.

 During the investigation the railroad attorney and Juryman Chas. Fletcher had a little tilt, the attorney substantially declaring the victim was nothing but a tramp, hence unworthy the consideration given. Before concluding his speech he was called to order by Juryman Fletcher, who held that a human life was sacrificed and it mattered not whether it was that of a Vanderbilt or a tramp, the duty of this jury was to find the cause, and the great Michigan Central had no right to indiscriminately run over any person found on its tracks. Flack's body was buried here until such time his friends can raise money to send for it.”

It would be interesting to learn just how this “tramp” lost his arm? In all likelihood, being without a limb back then meant he was a Civil War veteran.

Jeremy Winkworth displayed a small labeled Upjohn bottle. The label reads “100 Pills, Each Contains Morphine Sulphate 1/4 Grain, POISON!, Subject to Narcotic Law! The Upjohn Co., Kalamazoo, Mich.

Jeremy provided the following information; “Upjohn Morphine Sulphate Pills in 1/4 grain strength were made from 1886 to 1943 in Downtown Kalamazoo. The cost to the pharmacist or physician in 1886 was 50 cents for 100 pills. By the year 1931 the price had risen to $2.40 per 100. This bottle is from batch number 40531, which I estimate was manufactured in the early 1930's.”

I might add to Jeremy’s excellent description, the neck has, besides the original cork, what is left of the U.S. Government’s one-cent tax stamp.

Kevin had a large display of interesting goodies! The item that really stood out to me was an attic mint Eskimo Pie box from H.C. Schrink & Son’s Dairy, Ludington Michigan.

Inside the box was full-of-it and outside of the box was even more “full-of- it!”

 My snooping around online dates the ice-cream pie box to about 1920, and, here is what it reads: “Eskimo Pie, There’s Magic In Its Flavor! Buy it by the box - serve on all occasions! 1 Eskimo Pie has been found equivalent in food value to approximately, 1-chicken sandwich, 2-boiled eggs, 6 ounces boiled potatoes or carrots! Let your children eat all the Eskimo Pies they want! It’s Good For Them!”

Oh how my granddaughter would shout, “Hallelujah, Amen!”

Another one of Kevin’s treasures is a Victorian trade card ‘cut-out’ scrapbook! Man, I do love these things! Scrap-booking is a big deal once again, so clearly it isn’t new! When I ran across my first Victorian scrapbook, my first thought was “what carnage!” For anyone to take scissors to paper collectibles, seemed to me like finding a rare colored historic flask broken into pieces!

 However, there is another way of looking at this. When this scrapbook was put together, there was no TV, no Internet, no cell phones . . . but they still had rainy days . . . and very long winters! Entertainment came into the home via mailman in the form of beautiful bright- colored advertisements! Even though I do prefer my antique trade cards in one piece, just try to visualize this young person cutting and pasting this book together and organizing it just-so! It is actually a piece of folk art!

Another thing that is evident when you examine these beautiful, colorful albums is the wear. Very clearly they were enjoyed over-and-over again-and-again.

I have a small collection of early 1800's books published by the American Sunday School Union, printed long before the Civil War. They show evidence of repeated repair, some with needle and thread . . . because they were treasured.

Kevin brought in another neat item which was a bright red sign from the from the
Voigt Milling Company, Grand Rapids, Mich. It is advertising:

 “Royal Patent Flour”

Kevin’s collection included two flour bags, one burlap and one paper, labeled
“Voigt’s Crescent Brand Wheat Grits, sterilized and kiln dried.”

When I was growing up, I spent much of my summer with my grandparents. My grandmother was a wonderful cook, but breakfast was pretty simple and with regularity. We had oatmeal sprinkled with wheat germ and a glass of orange juice. I see where you can still buy Kretschmer Wheat Germ. I’m sorry, but the Wheat Grits started my mind to wander.

Rob Knolle and Jean Bogard have been having fun buying-selling-and-trading at the Kalamazoo Flea Market at the Kalamazoo Fairgrounds. Rob picked up a large amber Paine’s Celery Compound and a Dr. J. Hostetter’s Stomach Bitters bottle. Also, Rob is a scuba diver and lately he has been finding some great river treasures! I just saw some of his latest finds posted on Facebook. Rob, do not under estimate the value of those old marbles!

      I kept an aluminum pot-pie tin on my counter next to my cash register at the store. I dropped what I would consider my odd-ball finds into it, mostly stuff that I couldn’t identify. I had a guy come in and price a few metal detectors and pick-up some literature. After a couple visits, he decided on a detector and paid me for it. Just as he was about to leave he asked me, “Do you think you should leave that marble in there?” . . . pointing to the pie-tin.

“That Ox-blood is a $300.00 marble.”

At that point I decided to put it in a safer place in my display cabinet!

We went from the meeting room straight over to Bimbo’s Pizza. Of course we had some awesome pizza! I counted 13 in our group and we polished off 5 large pizzas . . . it was a good evening!

  E-Mail ~ Inbox

A fellow contacted me by e-mail seeking information on some bottles he found. Unlike most of the bottles that I see, he had some actual old, interesting ones. However, in the photos it was hard to tell if they were machine-made or not. One of his bottles was a clear pumpkin seed flask. I do know there are machine- made examples, but I am always drawn to them.

One of his bottles was the classic example, both size and shape of the classic Farrand & Williams bottle, but not embossed. It was the exact height, shape, and neck size as the F&W bottle.

The Farrand & Williams company was a company that changed ownership partners many times. If the company lineage is traced back, it started with a man named C. Penniman, who started in the drug business in 1819! The partner, Farrand, was brought into the firm in 1849.

  A new partner was brought into the company, and the name was changed to Farrand & Williams in 1872. By 1890, both Farrand and Williams were no longer involved. By 1907, the product line had been absorbed by the Michigan Drug Company. By 1919, the Michigan Drug Company celebrated 100 years in business (despite all the ownership changes.) I wonder if there is a C. Penniman bottle? Wouldn’t that be cool!

In 1878 Farrand & Williams boasted 4 blended versions of Norwegian Cod Liver Oil, a product called ‘Elixir of Phosphate compounded with Calisaya Bark,’ another called ‘Farrand’s Essence of Jamaica Ginger’ and ‘Dr. Jack’s Santonine Lozenges’ which claimed to be “A sure remedy for worms in children.”

My educated guess was the beautiful bottle that he found was originally a paper label bottle, very likely one from the Michigan Drug Company. Frequently companies will retain as much of a popular product’s iconic look to make it stand out on the store shelf.

Another fellow sent me a picture of a Battle Creek Druggist Bottle embossed “Will R. Phillips, Druggist”

That, was a tough one to hunt down! I sent a letter to Steve Deboode and searched online with no luck!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Steve gave me a phone number of a Battle Creek collector, Bob Roon who had a Will R. Phillips bottle! Bob isn’t so much a bottle collector as he is a Battle Creek collector in general. He said in his search he has only see a couple examples of this bottle in clear and he has them. I did find an ad in an early trade publication which clearly shows that Will R. Phillips was deeply involved in the druggist business.

I forgot to mention a bottle theme in the printed newsletter! Let's go with seasonal and recent finds!


  The Kalamazoo Antique Bottle Club
 meets at the main downtown

 Kalamazoo Library,

 315 South Rose Street.

We meet on the third floor in the conference room. This meeting is Tuesday, October 10th
 Meeting starts 

7:00 pm.

 For questions

 e-mail: prostock@net-link.net