September 22, 2011

Collected: Charles Wilson 2

In Appreciation of Bottles

In a mid summer visit to the market, I was surprised to find a little pop up shop of bottles. A scruffy young man was selling bottles he found throughout the city. Working in construction gives him an awesome advantage to explore recently dug sites.
I was recently given a great Charles Wilson soda bottle, produced in Toronto in the 20's, and I now have a second one to add to that collection. This great but beat up bottle is also a soda bottle, but about forty years earlier. Heavy, round lipped and in rough condition this bottle is not worth much but is a great reference piece. 

Clad with CHAS WILSON TORONTO ONT and, just barely through the glass, one can see the original Hutchinson style iron stopper. It sort of works like a butterfly clip, with a flat metal and rubber seal on the bottom. They were replaced in the 20's with the crown cap as the nature of this seal proved unsanitary. Dust and dirt could settle in the large open well of the neck, contaminating the beverage as it poured out. 
The pressure of the carbonated soda kept the seal shut, one only had to depress the wire loop to break see the seal and drink the beverage. Diagram below from wiki

Although hard to see, you can make out the classic Charles Wilson squirrel motif. Different than the one posted before, this little squirrel doesn't have the branch but does seem to be eating a large nut. His mouth open and looking guilty, caught in the act.

To view the Collected series as a whole visit our flickr page, updated every week.