Dating antique glass bottles

While the physical shape of the bottle is somewhat indicative of its age, other telltale signs are a bit more accurate for pinpointing its origin and production date.

If the bottle seems very heavy for its size, has a blobby top area and looks like hand-blown glass, it likely is.

Besides identifying the contents by the shape of a bottle, you can also estimate its age by certain features of the design.

For example, some bottles, especially 19th century to early 20th century soda and beer bottles have a blob-top.

Often you can tell what a bottle was used for by its shape.

For example, soda water and beer have distinctive shapes that were rarely used for other products.

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The earliest logo was the intertwined BBGMC—Ball Brothers Glass Manufacturing Company—used on jars made in Buffalo, New York.Another category easy to identify are the ink bottles.On the other hand, most food and cosmetic jars differ from many other pieces of glass, but it is generally difficult to tell them apart without embossing.Bottles made by a combination of mold and hand-blowing replaced much of the purely hand-blown bottle crafting in the early 19th century.Some small glass-blowing shops still blow bottles by hand as novelty or decorative products, but the glass is most likely much thinner than old glass and shows no discoloration.A brown glass bottle that looks vintage or antique from afar may not be as old as you think.


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