I know what you are thinking, another collection? I know I know but we’ve known each other long enough now to know that I can’t stop, won’t stop right? These antique mineral water bottles intrigued me inside of a booth at the Springfield Antique when I walked past the white tent that said “EVERYTHING IN THIS TENT CAME FROM A VICTORIAN ERA GARBAGE DUMP”. Excuse me? Pump the breaks we have to check this out. Cut to me spending at least 2 hours digging through the many tables and bins of treasure this gentleman had under his tent and starting an antique mineral water bottle collection. These are also known as Codd neck bottles.
This lovely man goes to Europe and digs for rare bottles in Victorian era dumps and what ever isn’t super rare (like hundreds/thousands of dollars worth) he ships back in crates to the U.S and takes it to antique shows. I bought quite a bit from him including the old ink wells pictured with the bottles and a big bag of broken lids to pots. The designs of them are so pretty I thought they looked stunning just piled high in one of my ironstone bowls.
So what is a Codd neck bottle and why was it used as a mineral water bottle ?
A Codd neck bottle named after Hiram Codd, a British soft drink maker designed this bottle to keep carbonated beverages from going flat. These bottles are super thick to be able to withstand the the pressure of carbonation. They also have a marble inside that paired with a rubber gasket would keep the fizzy beverage contained. The bottles where filled upside down and the gas pressure would push the marble against the rubber washer effectively sealing the beverage. The curved top of the bottle holds the marble once opened to prevent the marble from blocking the beverage. Bottles were smashed by kiddos in an effort to retrieve the marble. source
You can see from the above picture the pinched upper chamber of the bottle and that the glass is super thick. I do not know much about the brands I found but I was lucky enough to find three with an anchor on them. I’m a sucker for nautical. They also all have the marble in place still in the chamber.
I was able to chat with the gentleman for some time and he told me that most people digging in the dump discard these because they are after the rarer pieces. He thinks these are all still lovely and I have to agree. That is what I love about flea markets. You meet the most interesting people with the best stories. He said he has found a couple of times bottles worth a lot of money but they’re getting harder to find.
What did you pay for the codd bottle / antique mineral water bottle
I paid $89 for three of them. You could pick any three bottles for $89 or they were $35/piece. Not cheap by any means but such a cool story and a fun find. I also think the blue/green glass is just gorgeous.
I hope that this man returns to the market in 2021 because not only was it so fun to shop his space, he was such an interesting person to talk to. If you are going to a flea / antique market make sure that you take the time to chat. You never know what you are going to learn.
Where to find antique mineral water bottles
I found mine at the flea market but some other great places to look would be antique stores, look for booths with advertising because many of the people who collect these, also collect vintage pieces of advertising. If you get the chance to visit an estate sale they might be hiding in the basement or the garage with a bunch of canning jars. I do though, have the best luck at flea markets. I’ve seen these a few times around but they were more than what I was hoping to pay. I do not mind if they are not super rare, I just prefer them to be actually vintage and older.
Can’t make it to a flea market? Here are some antique mineral water bottles I found online.
This bottle has lovely font $22
This one is from the early 1900’s has great font for $8.50
This antique mineral water bottle has an amazing logo $24.50
It’s hard to tell what the logo is but it looks like a man holding something? $10
The color of this antique mineral water bottle is incredible $33