Bottles and ExtrasMay-June 20072
Arizonas Gallery in GlassCollecting Picture Pharmacy Bottles From The Grand Canyon State
By Mike MillerSeveral years ago I had the pleasure of
traveling to Tucson to spend the daydigging a privy with a friend Hillard Frey.I had previously dug in the sameneighborhood and had hopes of repeatingthe luck of that dig which produced severalTucson pharmacy bottles including a scarceBells Pharmacy. The pick of another diggerthat day, the Bells had always been highon my list of desired bottles.
Since that dig I had acquired one variantof the Bells from Hillard in a trade, butthe smaller and rarer, 1-ounce style was yetto be added to my collection. Arriving inTucson with my wife Karen at about 9 a.m.,we met Hillard at the dig site and proceededto excavate. After several hours of trainingKaren how to dig and remove broken debrisand digging several uninspiring bottles,our first real prize arrived in the form of a16-ounce Arcadian Drug Store bottle. Soonto follow was a second Arcadian of the samesize, a pumpkinseed flask from Gilroy,California and in a shovel full of discardeddirt the little Bells Pharmacy I had beenlooking for. Wiping the bottle free of dirt, Iinspected it for potential damage. Much tomy pleasure the Bells was mint with onlya small amount of haze.
After the dig, we bid Hillard goodbyeand headed back on the long drive toPhoenix hot, tired, dirty and smiling ear toear knowing that this time the Bells wasincluded in my picks. I had acquired onemore picture bottle for my Arizona gallery.
Arizona picture pharmacy bottles are,for the most part, fairly difficult to find.
Other than the Wolpe Drug Company bottleand a few of the Eschman variants, thesepicture bottles are rare and are in demandby collectors of Arizona pharmacy bottles.Presently, 23 different variants of picturebottles from 14 drug stores have beendocumented. The towns of Flagstaff,Jerome, Mesa, Nogales, Phoenix, Prescott,Tempe and Tucson all have representativepicture pharmacies, and pictures include ameasuring scale, moon and star, AMAsymbol, bear with mortar and pestle,phoenix bird, eagle, mortar and pestle withor without a wreath, setting sun, cross,ribbon, branches and a bell. Some of thesebottles also have small size equivalents withno picture.
John E. Ruffin utilized the PioneerDrug Store bottle at the turn of the century.Ruffin had purchased the store in 1898 fromDr. Dennis J. Brannen who had foundedthe pharmacy in 1884. By the end of 1901,Ruffin closed the Pioneer Drug Store, butreopened it in 1903. Later in 1906, thebusiness became known as the Ruffin DrugCompany and in 1910, the Hunter Drug Co.upon its sale to W.Y. Hunter. Smallervariants of this bottle do not have thepicture.
The Boyd Drug Store opened in 1899in the mining town of Jerome. Lynn E. Boydwas the original proprietor but by 1903 hehad added P. S. Boyd as a partner. By 1908,Lynn Boyd was again sole owner and inthe following year E. C. Mitchell was addedas manager so that Boyd could concentrateon his other concerns. Later that year, Boyd
sold his store to Mitchell and the businessbecame the Mitchell Drug Company. Twoof these very rare bottles were dug a coupleof years ago but no small sizes have beenfound.
Mesas Crescent Drug Companystarted in 1909 at 117 W. Main. Frank Clufffounded the company and operated thebusiness until 1916. It was during the laterportion of his tenure that the bottle wasused. J.D. and Lorana Robertson purchasedthe store from Cluff in 1916 and in turnsold the store in the middle twenties. D.C.Henson became the new owner and in 1927he transferred ownership to Ralph F.Palmer who modified the name to CrescentDrug Store Inc. Finally, in 1930, thepharmacy was bought by the Buy-RightDrug Store chain and became part ofArizona Drug Stores Incorporated. Nosmall sizes of this bottle have been verifiedso it is unknown if they have a picture.
Holladays Drug Store began in Mesaas the partnership of Holladay and Cooley.Originally an ice cream store, the businessopened at 131 W. Main in 1905 and by 1907had expanded into a drug store and rollerrink. In 1908 Cooley left the partnershipand Maroni P. Holladay continued as soleproprietor of the renamed Holladays Drugstore.
In 1916, Holladay briefly took a partnerin J. Ed Strecker but by the following yearthe partnership was over. The store closedin late 1917 and by the early twentiesHolladay owned a ranch in Gilbert. Thebottle from this store is from the early tomiddle teens and no small sizes have beendocumented.
In 1890 H. K. Chenoweth and JasperB. Mix started the International DrugStore in Nogales. Located at 201 MorleyAvenue, the pharmacy operated under thispartnership until 1898 when Chenowethleft to operate a sanitarium in Mexico. InDecember of 1898, L.W. Mix took overownership and the company name becameL.W. Mix & Company. Sole proprietor ofthe International Drug Store until 1906,Mix took H.C. Fleishman as a partner for atime but by late 1907 Fleishman had left toreturn to Tucson. Mix continued to operatethe store along with several differentmanagers until 1917 when he sold it to L.Henry Scherb, who operated theInternational Drug Store for many yearsand was still there in the 1940s. L.W. Mixused the picture bottle from this pharmacyaround 1903-1904. The smaller sizes do nothave the picture.
Bottles and Extras May-June 2007 3
The Bear Drug Store of Phoenixopened as the Keystone Pharmacy in 1897.Located at 118-120 E. Washington Streetand originally operated by Mont P. Chubb,the pharmacy was sold to Ben L. Bear in1898. The store was listed in 1903 as BearsKeystone Pharmacy and in January of 1904it became Bears Drug Store. Joseph W.Wilson and Robert P. Roziene purchasedthe store from Ben L. Bear in February1905. In May of that year, Roziene left thepartnership and C.S. Clopton replaced him.The pharmacy was renamed The Bear DrugStore since the sale to Wilson and Roziene.In December 1905, Wilson left the store andClopton became sole owner. A scandalinvolving allegations of fraudulent claimsinvolving medicines ensued soonafterwards and in April of 1906, Cloptonsold the store back to Ben L. Bear. The latterhad been operating a pharmacy in LosAngeles for the past year and returned onlylong enough to resell the store in June toRobert Roziene and his new partner, E.W.Potter. In 1912, Potter left the partnershipand Rozienne continued alone. In 1923, thestore was moved to 200 W. Washington andtwo years later Rozienne sold the store toHenry B. Cate. By 1934, Vernon C.Anderson was owner of the Bear Drug Storeand in 1936 changed the name to AndersonDrug Store. Bottles from this pharmacy arefrom the tenure of Wilson and Clopton whoran the store from May to December 1905,and smaller sizes do not have the picture.
Clarence Eschman had worked as apharmacist for E.T. Kearny & Company inTombstone from 1883 to 1884. In August1884, Eschman moved to Phoenix and wentto work for Robert B. Todd at the GardenCity Drug Store. Todds pharmacy hadstarted as the Osbourne & Company Drug
Store in 1883. Locating hisstore in the Goodrich Buildingon Washington Street, R.T.Osbourne sold the pharmacylater that year to Sam M. Huston whochanged the name to Garden City DrugStore. By August of 1884, Robert Todd hadbought the store and Huston remained asmanager until the following month whenEschman was hired for the position. Uponpurchasing the store, Todd had modifiedthe name to Todds Garden City Drug Storeand in 1886 renamed it Todds Pharmacy.Eschman purchased the drugstore fromTodd in March 1887 and the title revertedto the Garden City Drug Store. Operatingunder the company name of C.L. Eschman& Company, things remained constant until1892 when briefly E.J. Bennitt was broughtin as a partner. By the following year thepartnership was over and Eschmancontinued until 1898 as sole proprietor.Towards the end of Eschmans ownershipthe store was moved to 2 W. WashingtonStreet. In 1898, the pharmacy was sold toHerbert Goodman who changed its nameto Goodmans Pharmacy in 1899. Fivevariants exist of the Eschman & Co. bottleswith pictures on them. Four of these havephoenix birds rising from flames. The lasthas an eagle holding arrows and an olivebranch. Small sizes of the variant basemarked W.T. & CO. still retain the picture.
The plain-based phoenix bird varianthas no verified small bottles. The othersbottles do not have pictures on the smallersizes. The phoenix bird bottles were utilizedfrom 1892 to 1896. The eagle variant wasused in 1897.
Opening in 1890 in the Patten OperaHouse Building on Center Street, the OperaHouse Drug Store was operated by
E.E. Prowell. Prowell had come toPhoenix from Portland, Oregon where hehad also run a pharmacy. In October of
the following year Prowell sold his storeto J.D. Thorley who, in turn, sold out toDr. George H. Keefer in 1892. Dr. Keefercontinued operations from the Opera HouseBuilding until 1899 when he moved hisstore to 5-7 E. Washington Street and ranhis business as Keefers Pharmacy.Prowells bottle was utilized in 1890 andholds the distinction of being the onlyterritorial-marked picture bottle fromArizona.
The Sun Drug Company startedoperation in 1914 at 140 N. 1st Avenue inPhoenix. Owned by William F. Neail forthe first seven years of operation, thepharmacy was sold to Fred W. Ritter in1921. Upon his death in late 1936, Ritterswife, Mrs. Grace Ritter, took over theoperation. In 1940 Sam J. Reich bought thestore and in 1942 took G. Melvin Reese asa partner. By the late 1940s, Reese was soleproprietor of the pharmacy, which was stillin operation in the 1950s. Two variants ofpicture bottles exist from William Neailstime of ownership. These both retain thepicture on all sizes.
Isidor Francis Wolpe opened the WolpeDrug Company in 1916 after closing hisprevious business, the Arizona MercantileCompany. With locations a