Dating beer bottles

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  1. A Guide to Dates on Beer Bottles | Beeriety
  2. Style Matters
  3. Julian bottle dating

Many malt tonics made just prior to and during Prohibition were indeed non-alcoholic. However, it must recognized that many people even today with some scientific justification believed alcoholic beverages had useful medicinal qualities Young Hops were also believed to have medicinal "tonic" effects and were noted to be useful for " general or local debility associated with wakefulness, enfeebled digesting, etc. For an example of a malt tonic that was likely made just before National Prohibition was the law-of-the-land, click Heileman's Malt Tonic Heileman Brewing Co.

In , this company became the Pabst Brewing Company. Click "The Best Tonic" to see a trade card with an calendar on the back that was given out by Pabst for the same product, but which also shows the bottle on the card. Many breweries produced malt and hops based medicinal products, including the Anheuser-Busch Brewing Company which produced a product called "Malt-Nutrine" during the early 20th century Anderson It was produced by the Charles A. King Company , which was Boston, MA. The label notes that " Puremalt " provided the same medicinal qualities as noted for the " The Best Tonic " previously discussed.

This bottle was produced in a two piece post-bottom mold, has multiple shoulder air venting marks, and a tooled blob style finish which makes it likely to date from the latter end of the noted business range for the company, i. This bottle also has the original cork and the wire that held it in place, presumably to offset the pressures of carbonation.

This company also marketed a "Cla-Wood Malt Extract" which was likely similar to the "Extract of Malt" products discussed earlier White This bottle was mouth-blown in a cup base mold, has multiple air venting marks on each shoulder, and a tooled crown finish. The crown finish was increasingly popular on mouth-blown soda and beer bottles from the late s up until virtual complete conversion to machine-made crown finish bottles around to for beer and soda bottles Lockhart pers.

Wyeth's Liquid Malt Extract - This commonly encountered late 19th to early 20th century mouth-blown bottle is embossed vertically on one side with JNO. The product was advertised as early as the s and as late as , although the typical embossed bottles like the one pictured here date from the s to s era Fike The bottles are approximately 9" tall, have a tooled oil finish, were blown in a cup base mold with air venting marks, and have two distinctive molded rings at the base of the neck.

The lower finish and upper neck are also unique in that just below the outwardly flaring oil finish is a concentric groove where the base of the finish and upper neck merge. This last image also shows faintly the noted concentric groove where the base of the finish and top of the neck meet - a feature largely unique to this bottle. The pictured bottle is 7. The Johann Hoff bottles are a variation of the "squatty" shape noted above, but may actually be the bottle that initiated the malt extract style as the Johann Hoff product was first introduced in Europe in Fike The label notes that the product was "A dietetic and healing remedy recommended by European physicians for Complaints of the Chest and Stomach, Dyspepsia, Obstinate Coughs, Hoarseness, etc.

Older versions of this bottle s and prior have applied finishes and are olive green to olive amber in color and are often quite crude empirical observations. How far back this particular bottle style goes is unknown, but to at least the s in the U. The product was imported into the U. New York which is noted on the label shown here. Later s and after mouth-blown examples were amber or emerald green pictured example in color.


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Machine-made examples have not been noted by the author, but could exist since the product was produced until at least Fike Whether these bottles were made in Europe and imported full or were made in the U. Mouth-blown examples were produced in both turn molds and two-piece molds with either a cup-bottom mold or occasionally a post-bottom mold configuration.

Mouth-blown examples date from the apparent initiation of the style in the s to the mid to late s. Mouth-blown examples with a blob finish bottles likely date no later than the very early s with crown finish bottles from the early s to late s. Machine-made examples almost always have a crown finish and date from possibly as early as , though most would date from the mid s or later IGCo.

These bottles are virtually always seen in some shade of amber glass though other colors are possible. Another beer bottle style - several styles actually - popular during the late 19th century and first couple decades of the 20th century were intended for wheat or "weiss" beer. Weiss beer is a northern European style that was brought to the U.

It is made from a mix of malted barley and wheat, with the wheat usually composing at least half of the mash and fermented with different strains of yeast than used with regular beer. The resulting brew is relatively light, aromatic, yeasty, and effervescent.

Weiss beer appears to have died out with National Prohibition though the style has seen a significant revival with the micro-brewery boom of the past couple decades Anderson ; Papazian There are two main types of weiss bottles which both essentially take the steep but gentle sloped shoulder form of the champagne style and alter it - one with a wider body picture to the left and the other with a narrow, compressed body pictured below right.

Weiss beer was also frequently bottled in regular champagne style beer bottles Mobley It appears that weiss beer was particularly popular in the East and Midwest given the numbers of bottles embossed with "weiss" on them from those regions. It must have been particularly popular in the St. Louis area as there are quite a number of embossed bottles from that area; one of the styles in the early 20th century Illinois Glass Company catalogs was actually called the "St.

However, there were "weiss breweries" in a few places in the west including Portland, OR. Portland Weiss Brewing and Bottle Co.

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A Guide to Dates on Beer Bottles | Beeriety

Berlin Weiss Beer Brewing Co. The amber, 7" tall, bottle pictured to the above left is a an example of the "squatty" weiss beer style. It likely dates from the s or early s and has a blob style finish with a Lightning closure. The letters on the heel certainly stand for the glass maker who made the bottle, although there were many glass makers with those initials during the late 19th to very early 20th century when this bottle was made making it impossible to confidently attribute at this time Toulouse ; Lockhart pers.

It is possible that Carl was a son? These types of inconclusive tidbits of information demand more local research to pin down more specifically. The heel lettering indicates that this bottle was made by the Illinois Glass Company who offered mold number 30A from at least but not as early as to giving a high probability dating range for when this bottle IGCo.

This bottle has a tooled blob finish and was blown in a cup base mold with multiple shoulder air venting. It also has the original porcelain lightning stopper in place which is marked with the brewery name on top. A check of Bull, et. The bottle pictured at the following link - C. The base of the bottle is also embossed with " R. This beer bottle has a blob finish with the distinctive Baltimore seal "groove" inside the bore, multiple air venting marks, and was produced in a post-bottom mold.

Centlivre Brewing Company did business under this name from to , which in hand with the diagnostic characteristics, indicate a manufacture of around to van Wieren Though the bottle embossing does not indicate it was used for weiss beer, one could reasonably conclude that it was used for weiss based on the somewhat unusual shape which is strongly associated with that beer style. The bottle pictured to the left is another somewhat squatty - though less so than the example above - weiss beer bottle that is closer in overall conformation to the regular champagne beer style.

In addition, bottles with "Registered" on the shoulder usually date from the no earlier than or so empirical observations. The weiss beer bottle styles covered here appear to have been made during the era between the mid s and National Prohibition with the style - beer and bottles - largely disappearing after that time.

As noted, weiss largely disappeared until the late 20th century revival of the style Anderson , empirical observations. All examples of marked weiss beers noted by the author of this site have been mouth-blown, though some machine-made ones are possible during the s. In general, the closer dating of these bottles must be accomplished using manufacturing based diagnostic features - see the Bottle Dating pages for more dating information - or by searching the historical record when the company or product related embossing or labeling allows for such, like the bottles pictured here.

It also required that the method of closure be air tight and dependable so that the carbonation could be retained until consumption. A couple examples are pictured and described here, but not overly elaborated on. The blob finish soda to the left is embossed vertically down the front - H. This particular bottle has a applied blob finish with some slop over onto the neck, was blown in a post-bottom mold, has a smooth base, and no air venting and the resulting flatter, rounded embossing indicating a manufacturing date range of to about With just the physical features of this bottle, that date range is the best that one can do in pinning down the date of this bottle.

However, a check of Bull, et. These diagnostic features would most likely date this bottle from the late s to maybe The bottle pictured to the left is an "apollinaris" style bottle that was commonly used between the s and s mouth-blown and s and likely s machine-made. Though primarily used for mineral water, this type bottle was also used for lager beer from at least the early s into the mids and in particular by the Anheuser-Busch Brewing Association Wilson ; Lockhart These earlier "apollinaris" type bottles were most likely blown in a two-piece mold though might have been occasionally turn-molded with true applied finishes.

Style Matters

The pictured bottle was produced in a turn-mold, has a short tooled blob finish, a slightly indented base, and from the context of what other items it was found with tooled finish beer bottles with some early wide-mouth machine-made items most likely dates from about This style was commonly called the "apollinaris" by bottle makers during the noted era. This class of bottles is typified by a relatively short body height of the typical oz. Click on Bottle Dating: Machine-made Bottles Portion of the Dating Key to view the diagnostic characteristics of machine-made bottles.

A large majority of these bottles from the s through s have a crown cap accepting finish, though the lower portion of the finish can vary or even be absent.

The glass color is usually some shade of amber though a few colorless ones have been noted by the website author; click colorless stubbie to see an 11 oz example. There is also an even more faint plant code 20 for Oakland, CA. Most of these bottles are of moderately heavy glass since at least some were intended to be reused, though most were probably one use "no return" bottles except during WWII when wartime conservation rules dictated re-usable bottles Schulz pers. Later s on versions were usually lighter glass and not intended for re-use at all.

Many later examples were also made with external threaded finishes to accept screw caps; click stubbie with external screw threads to view an example which is dated These bottles were almost exclusively used for beer and a few soda items like root beer e. The stubbie beer bottle is typically shaped as pictured above left and originated about The classic stubbie style has an almost non-existent neck, often an embossed ring on the mid-shoulder possibly a fill line that allowed delineated the necessary head space , and a rounded lower body to heel section Lockhart pers.

Julian bottle dating

Though originating in the s, its zenith of popularity in the U. In fact, it was THE official Canadian beer bottle from to As noted earlier, this style is still being used somewhat around the world. The pictured bottle has the usual 11 oz. The base also has an almost certain date code of "53" for Click on the following links to see more view pictures of this bottle: It is similar to the quart steinie pictured below right, but with the absence of the neck bulge. Click base view to see such showing the makers mark for the Anchor Hocking Glass Co. The base photo also shows the "49" date code indicating production in A competing style to the stubbie was the steinie, an oz.

It also has a short, proportionally wide body but with a longer, moderate length neck that has a distinct bulge or "step-up" and a fairly sharply angled body to heel area. This style with the step-up neck was apparently designed by the Owens-Illinois Glass Company about to vaguely mimic the taller and more well known export style beer bottle.

The pictured steinie is of the typical 11 to 12 ozs. The large beer bottle to the right is a full quart size steinie. It has features common to both the stubbie and the steinie, i. These similarly shaped, though larger size beers are not as commonly encountered as the shorter 11 to 12 oz. Quart size bottles with the stubbie shape were also apparently made Lockhart pers. Both the stubbie and steinie styles appear to have originated just after the end of National Prohibition making their first appearance in Both styles were used commonly through the s.

By early s the steinie style the oz. Other styles tend to be uncommonly observed or subtle variations of those covered above.

Date Your Glass Soft Drink & Beer Bottles

At this juncture in time other styles will not be addressed but may in the future once this website is "complete" It does, however, cover the primary styles that were most commonly used and encountered within an archaeological context. This page has also somewhat emphasized mouth-blown bottles since that subject is of more familiarity to the author of this website than later 20th century, machine-made items. However, though the automated bottle production era also had incredible variety, it was not as diverse as the mouth-blown era since shape standardization and simplification was typical of machine manufacturing.

Also, bottle body embossing became much less frequent on machine-made bottles and a significant amount of the diversity of the mouth-blown production era was the different proprietary embossing on essentially the same shapes of bottles. This website created and managed by: Viewers are encouraged, for personal or classroom use, to download limited copies of posted material. No material may be copied for commercial purposes. Author reserves the right to update this information as appropriate.

This is an image of an early style of beer or ale bottle that is similar in form to the black glass bottle in the extreme upper left corner of this box. This bottle is 8. Most beer bottles have some sort of date on them, but figuring out what they mean can be a bit confusing. Many brewers will buy these bottles back from a retailer a full retail price, so there is no reason to keeping old beer on the shelf. For many years A-B recommended a shelf life of days, but a few years ago extended that to days.

While getting a beer as fresh as possible is great, aged beer can be pretty wonderful , so which beer should you pick up from the store? Well aging beer is unfortunately not as simple as letting a beer sit on a store shelf. Beer only ages correctly under the proper conditions. Discussion in ' Beer Talk ' started by tcman , May 4, There's still time to join us at Extreme Beer Fest! Julian bottle dating Discussion in ' Beer Talk ' started by tcman , May 4, Does anyone have any insight on why a brewery would use a Julian dating system over the conventional way?

I picked up a 6-pack of Lagunitas Sucks over the weekend. Here were the bottle dating numbers stamped on the neck It seems goofy, confusing, and a bit frustrating. I'm sure there is a reason Badfish , Greywulfken and jrnyc like this. If I remember correctly, you want to look at the first 4 numbers. The bottom slew of numbers is the time of day it was bottled. But yes, I agree a traditional dating method would be slightly more convienent.

Badfish , GamehendgeBrewingCo , ekesz13 and 15 others like this. Bottle dating that clearly indicates when the product was produced is a convenience or luxury to customers that brewers surely must recognize by now that it serves as a beacon to their customer as when to buy their product and when to leave it sit like the proverbial cheese. Julian dating, coding, etc. Not defending one practice over the other, but long as their product still sells, why would they change their process?

AlcahueteJ Champion Dec 4, Massachusetts. I think the bigger issue, and one that can be easily changed, is breweries that are currently stamping with normal dates, but BEST BY dates, and not bottling dates. Badfish , texaswhiplash , Hayden34 and 2 others like this. You shouldn't need a decoder ring to figure out when your beer was made. Kadonny Meyvn 1, Sep 5, Pennsylvania. Badfish , bubseymour , kerry4porters and 1 other person like this. There is nothing inherently difficult about Julian bottle dating. Round each month to 30 days and it takes about 2 seconds to figure out when a beer was bottled or canned.

Plus, it's better to have this than a Best By date where you're really not sure how long the brewery projects that out to.