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) during the early 1900s, it's primary intent was medicinal though undoubtedly many people who used this very popular product did not have self-medication in mind (American Medical Assoc. In addition, various straight liquors were thought to be therapeutic for various ills - gin for the kidneys, rum as a cure for bronchitis, and Rock and Rye for the symptoms of the common cold (Powers 1998).

Whiskey was often labeled as - and sometimes even embossed - "For Medicinal Purposes Only" as early as the mid-19th century - long before National Prohibition took effect in January of 1920 (Wilson & Wilson 1968).

The growing strength of the Temperance movement and rising anti-alcohol fervor during the late 19th and early 20th centuries led to the passage of ever increasing restrictions on the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages. The power of the Temperance movement culminated in the addition of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution on January 16th, 1919; the amendment written to take effect one year after ratification, i.e., January 17th, 1920.

To be fair, ethyl alcohol was (and is) one of the better preservatives for products intended for internal consumption or external use.

These examples help point out the vague line that existed between liquor/spirits and medicinal products during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

There were, of course, various exceptions allowed under the law for "medicinal" products containing alcohol as well as sacramental wines (Okrent 2010).

Although certain elements of the Volstead Act were loosed up (e.g., 3.2% beer was legal to sell again) beginning in April of 1933, repeal of the 18th Amendment came in December of 1933.

Prohibition makes a very convenient dating transition point for liquor bottles which is not available for other types of bottles.

However, there were some machine-made liquor bottles and flasks that most definitely pre-date Prohibition.

"FEDERAL LAW FORBIDS SALE OR RE-USE OF THIS BOTTLE" inscription on the shoulder of a machine-made pint liquor flask manufactured in 1956 by the Owens-Illinois Glass Company. Though not quite on a par with the anti-slavery movement of the 19th century, temperance was a very significant morally based social movement in the U. and had its roots in the still pervasive damage done to some individuals and their families by the improper use of alcohol.

This embossing was required on all liquor bottles sold in the U. To quote an important work on the subject: "For many observers of American Life the Temperance movement is evidence for an excessive moral perfectionism and an overly legalistic bent to American culture." This is a pervasive thread that still exists in current American politics and culture in aspects of human behavior well beyond just alcohol (Gusfield 1970).

Click -Squat spirits/utility cylinder bottles (earlier) -Tall, moderately slender bodied, bulged neck spirits/utility cylinder bottles -Tall, moderately slender bodied, straight neck "Patent" style spirits cylinders (mid-19th century) -Tall, moderately slender bodied, straight neck spirits cylinders (late 19th & 20th century) -Decorative shoulder spirits cylinders -Squat cylinder spirits bottles (later) -Malt whiskey cylinders -Tall, straight neck spirits cylinders (early 20th century) -Tall Modern Cylinder liquor (mid-20th century)These categories are shape based primarily with the exception of the first category - figured flasks - which are largely recognized by collectors/archaeologists as a separate category.

Each of the pictured bottles has a relatively short description and explanation including estimated dates or date ranges for that type bottle and links to other view pictures of the bottle.

It is an almost absolute fact that if an American made liquor bottle is mouth-blown it pre-dates National Prohibition.

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