Kelly's Old Cabin bitters bottle brings $45,360 at American Bottle Auctions A Kelly’s Old Cabin bitters bottle, made during the Civil War and in a rare light green color, soared to $45,360 in an Internet and catalog auction held Aug. 17-26 by American Bottle Auctions.
the $12,000 mark. One was a Lafayette/DeWitt Clinton half-pint flask (GI-81a), a rare variant of a rare Lafayette flask in a beautiful light to medium olive and amber color, graded 9.7 ($12,880). The other was a Barkhouse Bros. & Co. Gold Dust Kentucky Bourbon fifth (John Van Bergen & Co., Sole Agents, circa 1871-1874), graded 9.8 ($12,320).
One other bottle cracked five figures -- a William Bodmann (Baltimore, Md.) Cathedral pickle jar in the half-gallon size, made in the 1840s ($10,640). The jar, graded 9.9, would be a centerpiece for any collector of Baltimore glass. Also, a Saratoga Seltzer Spring Co. (N.Y.) pint bottle in a beautiful emerald green color with lots of bubbles and whittle, graded 9.8, hit $5,376.
Two bottles reached identical prices of $6,720. One was a Miller’s Extra Old Bourbon fifth (trademark E. Martin & Co.) with an applied top, made circa 1871-1875, a beautiful light example and rated highly at 9.8. The other was a Dr. S. Cropper’s Stomach Bitters bottle with applied top and smooth base, graded 9.5 and colored a beautiful green with a dash of lime.
A Double Eagle historical pint flask (GII-118), from the same San Francisco collection as the back bars – a sparkling, whittled pristine blue example, with excellent crudity, color and condition (9.8) soared to $5,376. Also, a Stephens & Jose (Virginia City, Nev.) bottle, with monogram on the reverse and applied top, graded a near-flawless 9.9+, commanded $4,704.
A Pacific Congress Water Springs (Saratoga, Calif.) mineral water bottle with embossed running deer, in a beautiful and extremely rare olive color, graded 9.7 and quite possibly the best example in existence, changed hands for $4,032; and an Old Homestead Wild Cherry Bitters with applied top, quite possibly the lightest yellowish-green example ever seen, garnered $4,480.
Rounding out the sale’s top lots: a Myers Rock Rose (New Haven) applied top quart with graphite pontil and colored a brilliant bluish green, went for $2,688; a Greely’s Bourbon Bitters bottle with applied top and smooth base, in a dazzling pink-amber color, realized $2,128; and a Brown’s Iron Bitters (Brown Chemical Co.), 8 inches, colored an unusual green, made $2,128.
American Bottle Auctions’ next Internet and catalog sale is tentatively scheduled for November. Already consigned are outstanding historical flasks and Western flasks, and a verbal commitment has been made for a collection of advertising items large and important enough to constitute an auction by itself. Watch the website (americanbottle.com) as November draws near.
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. To learn more about American Bottle Auctions and the upcoming auction slated for November, log on to www.americanbottle.com.