The sale of items from the legendary late collector set new participation records for a Sotheby’s UK auction.
|Antique Schlitz Beer Bottles are original glass bottles made to contain the American beer Schlitz.
History & Description
The Schlitz Brewing Company was initially founded in 1849 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, by August Krug but was acquired by Joseph Schlitz in 1858. Schlitz had actually been hired as a bookkeeper in a tavern owned by Krug and took over management of the brewery following Krug’s death.
At the turn of the twentieth century, Schlitz was the biggest beer producer in the world and became famous due to slogans like “The beer that made Milwaukee famous” and “When you’re out of Schlitz, you’re out of beer”.
As recently as 1976, Schlitz was America’s second best selling beer.
Guide for collectors
While Schlitz beer bottles are not considered antique in the true meaning, they are still highly collectible. A few examples in particular that are of interest to beer bottle collectors include the “pop top” can, which appeared in 1963 and the first brown bottles that were introduced in 1911. Brown glass prevented light from spoiling the contents inside.
In addition, the American glass manufacturer Anchor Hocking made Royal Ruby beer bottles for Schlitz between 1950 and 1963. Over thirty-seven different variations of Anchor Hocking beer bottles were produced; however, the 16oz bottle is often cited as the rarest available today.
Schlitz beer bottles are uncommon at auction houses but are regularly advertised on online bidding sites, such as eBay. Regardless of individual or group lots, prices invariably range between $10 and $50.
Notable auction sales
On June 11th 2011 at Strawser Auction Group in Wolcottville, Indiana, a Schlitz case of twenty-four 7oz Royal Ruby red beer bottles, all with labels intact, realised a price of $50.
On September 13th 2011 at Paige Auction in Portland, Oregon, a Schlitz beer bottle and Schlitz beer bottle topper sign, circa 1940, realised a price of $25.
On March 12th 2012, an 1890’s Schlitz embossed beer bottles with stopper was sold on eBay for $29.
On September 14th 2010 at Paige Auction in Portland, Oregon, a Royal Ruby red 7oz beer bottle, circa 1950, realised a price of $15.
Main article: Schlitz collectibles & memorabilia
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