Monday, July 3, 2017

A pair to draw to~

I recently posted a couple of pictures on the Western Bottle Collectors website just for grins. It was soda Sunday but, being the non-conformist that I am, decided to go against the tide.

An area of collecting that I'd ignored for years revolves around pre-prohibition advertising shot glasses. Initially, they were plain, like a slick cylinder. But sometime in the 1890's someone got the idea that shot glasses would make a great top of the mind sales aid if advertising could be applied to the wall of the glass. 

The process was simple; create a stencil, apply the stencil to the glass, paste an adhesive through the stencil and onto the glass, dust the adhesive with powdered glass, and re-fire the powder in an annealing oven so that it bonded with the shot glass.

Earlier examples were pretty plain; maybe just a single line or two."J.H. Cutter", "Cyrus Noble", "Capitol OK" and "Springfield" are a few that come to mind. Later, more elaborate designs, company names and logos, gold rims, and even pictures adorned the glasses.

The theory was simple, see the name of the whiskey that you were drinking repeatedly with each sip, and one would order the same, over and over. Based on the sheer numbers of surviving glasses, it must have worked.

And so, another often overlooked area of go-withs emerged among western whiskey collectors. It's fun to match up an acid etched glass with the embossed cylinder, and they don't take up much space. Best of all, there are literally hundreds of different western glasses. Many are available at reasonable prices with the price of admission starting at around ten or twenty bucks.

Once you get bitten by the shot glass bug, you can graduate to the big leagues; (kinda like starting out with a simple amber tooled J. H. Cutter fifth and ultimately moving up to a yellow glop top OPS~). 

Some of the picture glasses are one or two of a kind and competition is intense, with examples fetching crazy prices.



For those wishing to learn more about "pre-pro shots", I'd recommend Barb Edmonsons  paperback reference books. 

Historic Shot Glasses (HSG), and Old Advertising Spirits Glasses (OASG).

(we have both editions in stock - priced quite reasonably - if interested) 

(we also have roughly 80 pre-pro glasses available for purchase)

 Happy Hunting!

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