Saturday, November 2, 2019

Touring Washington, DC in the Early 1900's

Here we have two advertising cards. They promote trips to Washington, DC to take place in 1908 and 1910. Join us for the trip of your life! A company called "Carter's" located at 310 Dillaye Building in Syracuse, NY sponsored the "wagonette tours." (These look like horseless carriages. Do those wheels even have tires?) Vacationers used the railroads to get to the big city.

Photos of past sold-out trips are used to advertise to future groups:

1907 Bliss Party Seeing Washington By Auto Bus Tour
Bliss Party Wagonette Tour

The above card is the "Bliss Party." Passengers are loaded onto early open-air buses called "wagonettes."

The above card is available here for purchase.

These tours were still running two years later, with this advertisement:

1909 horseless carriage bus tour
Owego High School Graduating Class
October 1910 Washington DC
Itinerary of Wagonette Tour of Washington DC in 1910

The vertical card is the Owego High School Graduating Class. It certainly looks fun... and a little bit dangerous!

Thursday, August 29, 2019

J. R. Spencer Druggist, Newport, ME

J R Spencer Druggist Newport ME Prescription Bottle
J.R. Spencer bottle, Newport Druggist
Check out this rare old embossed pharmacy bottle. Dating to the period from ca 1890 to1903, this fancy custom bottle was from druggist J. R. Spencer of Newport, ME. (See the listing here.)

This antique embossed cork-top bottle is faintly marked on the bottom “S B W CO” (from the Saltsburg Bottle Works Company of Pa).

J R Spencer was a leading druggist in Newport, Maine at the beginning of the 1900's. (There was at least one other pharmacist in Newport at that time. More information is here.)

J.R. Spencer's Druggist was a prolific user of advertising. His claims in 1901:

J R Spencer Druggist Newport ME Embossed Prescription
1901 advertisement for J R Spencer Druggist of Newport, ME

By 1902, his claims were more outrageous:

Druggist Bottle from J R Spencer of Newport ME Embossed Glass
Partial label
"Spencer’s Headache Powders.The only one that cures with no bad effects which contains no opiates. J. R. Spencer, Prescription Druggist, 14 Mill St. Newport, Me."

"TAKE Spencer’s Vegetable Blood Purifier for that Tired Feeling Rheumatism, Kidney Diseases, and all diseases arising from an imperfect state of the blood."
In 1902, the business traded places with the barber shop and moved across the street. By 1904, a stationer's business was added.

After that, the online curtain draws closed on Mr. Spencer.

Antique Bottle J R Spencer Druggist Newport ME
Salzberg Bottle Works mark circa 1900

Friday, August 2, 2019

Which type of Sauer's extract bottle is this?

Sauer's Extract Bottle
1920's Sauer's Extract bottle for sale

This estate auction find is listed on Etsy. It looks to be from circa the 1920's. The side seams go up to the lip. It is marked on the bottom with "AGW 5."

American Glass Works began in 1908. This big glass company was owned by none other than C.F. Sauer, the proprietor of the extract company... Check out the details available about the many Sauer's bottle types! They evidently used older/cheaper methods to make their own bottles, including this one.

Some had a packer finish, and a ring finish,

This bottle measures nearly 6" tall. It has a sunken back panel. The closest is Type IV. But this type should not have a number with the initials on the bottom. And this one has what looks like an oval on the bottom, which is not supposed to be there either...

So you be the judge. There are plenty of fins including the side seams (it seems to me at least).
American Glass Works mark
Glass Marks with Oval
image 9
image 6

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Steamship Camden at Belfast Maine Wharf in the 1920s

Belfast Maine Wharf in the 1920s
Last year, I purchased this photo of the wharf at Belfast, Maine. Moored is the SS Camden. Really this is a large cabinet card. Although cabinet cards are said to have gone out of use by WW2, this is dated in the 1920's.

Eastern Steam Ship Lines Wharf
The Camden was built in 1907 at Bath Iron Works for the Eastern Steamship Lines. “The new, steel turbine steamer Camden made her first trip on Saturday, June 22nd, arriving in Camden at 6 a.m. She had made a record-breaking run from Boston to Rockland in 8 ½ hours. A crowd of over 600 people were on hand to greet the ship, with the Camden Band providing music for the occasion." (Her twin, the Belfast, also built at Bath, was launched two years later.)

Back end of the SS Camden
In that era, Belfast was a hub for steamer traffic. The steamship wharf was a busy place, with boats carrying passengers to bayside towns, as well as summer excursions and fishing grounds. By the 1930s bridges carried vehicles across rivers and the era of steamboats was coming to an end... (The Eastern steamship wharf housed a roller skating rink before being torn down.)

The Camden made the overnight run between Boston and Bangor. In 1936, the steamship was sold to the Colonial Line and renamed the Comet. and ran between NYC and Providence, RI. During WWII it was used as a troop transport in Hawaii; in 1948, the ship was towed to Asia for service on the Yangtze and was broken up shortly after that in Hong Kong.

Length: 320.5
Breadth: 40.0
Draught: 16.1
Gross tonnage: 2153.0
Speed: 18 knots

Captain and Quartermaster of the SS Camden in 1927
On the frame backing is named the captain, Charles Crockett [misspelled] of Winterport Maine. And the Quartermaster was William G White. (My guess is that this came down from the Quartermaster's estate but I could of course be wrong.)

...Or was the Belfast Wharf picture from 1923?

There are markings on two parts, and the dates are different (five years apart). On the frame backing is named the captain, Charles Crockett [misspelled] of Winterport Maine. And the Quartermaster was William G White. (My guess is that this came down from the Quartermaster's estate but I could of course be wrong.)

It is available in my Etsy shop here.

Ah well, there are sometimes mysteries that must be left unsolved. I hope you have enjoyed this journey!

Large cabinet card of the steamship wharf in Belfast, Maine