Western bitters bottles from the 1800s score big at American Bottle Auctions' two-part Auction #63 A Lacour’s Sarsapariphere Western bitters bottle, made circa 1866-1875, the early variant number one and in a color that is highly desirable to collectors, sold for $35,650 in an online-only auction.
A Dr. Henley’s “Eye Opener” medicine bottle, made in 1873, changed hands for $20,125. The bottle was a magnet for collectors, as there are only four aqua variants known, with this being the only example with color – an almost electric yellow. The bottle was only manufactured that one year (the product didn’t open many eyes), and a chip off the back lip didn’t deter eager bidders.
A Catawba Wine bitters bottle, made circa 1860-1866, with embossed grapes on opposite sides, went for $18,400. The bottle is an oddity, made for an Ohio concern but sold predominantly in the West, so it’s considered a Western bottle, which it really isn’t. But this bottle, with the glass spilling from the mouth, superb crudity and pontiled variant, make it the finest example known.
A Dr. Wonser’s U.S.A. Indian Root bitters bottle, made circa 1871-1873, colored a good old-fashioned amber and boasting lots of whittle, crystal yellow glass and every element an astute collector looks for in a bottle, finished at $14,250. Dr. Womser’s is always a hit with collectors because of its design and name, but this particular example shone above all others in the auction.
Rounding out the highly successful, two-session sale were a Barkhouse Bros. & Co. Gold Dust Kentucky Bourbon bottle (John Vanbergen & Co., Sole Agents) in a chocolate amber ($12,075); and a Dr. Boerhaave’s Stomach bitters bottle in a medium to deeper bright green color ($10,350).
American Bottle Auctions is always accepting quality consignments for future sales. To consign a single bottle or an entire collection, you may call them toll-free, at 1-800-806-7722; or, you can e-mail them at email@example.com. For more info, please visit www.americanbottle.com.