Dating old mountain dew bottles
There is a legend back here in the backwoods of Virginia and East Tennessee about the origins of a very popular drink today, Mountain Dew.
Many versions of the story are told most of which are written by family members of the people involved or live in the towns involved, with most of them being biased toward their particular ancestor being the creator of Mountain Dew as we know it today, or it happening in their particular location.
You can't, furthermore why bother to register a trademark if you have no intent of bottling said soft drink.
Granted the actual trademark registration wasn't granted until August 11, 1953,(4) due to the controversial name which was associated with bootleg liquor(1); however, seeing as you don't actually have to have a registered trademark to bottle a drink, I don't think this would stop a company from bottling a certain drink.
The story goes that they stored the bottles in a warehouse for some reason and didnt use them until around 1955.
In 1954 Charlie Gordon of Tri-City Beverage requests and is granted the very first franchise for Mountain Dew.
Someone, Dick Bridgforth claims it was Charlie Gordon, suggested that the Hartmans should market the drink to the public.
So they decided to do just that, they had the original hand drawn paper label professionally recreated as an ACL (Applied Color Label), and ordered bottles around 1951.
I have done much researching into the "House of Lazier", and their products, and I've discovered that Natural Set Up was a product of the J. The Hartmans filed for registered trademark status for Mountain Dew on November 12, 1948.(4) The claimed First Use Date on the trademark paper work is September 24, 1948, and the First Use In Commerce date is listed as October 10, 1948.(4) How can you have a first use in commerce date on a soft drink if you didn't bottle the soft drink until 1955?
Speaking of which why would Charlie Gordon, another successful bottler, ask for a franchise for a brand that wasn't selling to the point of having to store the bottles in a warehouse for four years?
I had the pleasure to meet and talk with Dick Bridgeforth last year, and was able to ask him some questions, one of which was of course about the 1952-1954 Hartman Mountain Dew bottles which really shouldn't exist if they warehoused them until 1955.
The 7-UP is a G-94 mold number, the Mountain Dew is a G-52, and finally the Sun Drop is a G-1661.
According to Bridgeforth's book all of the Hartman 7oz Mountain Dew bottles share the same mold number G-52.(2) So the company didn't use stocked 7-UP (or Sun Drop bottles) to fill orders for the Hartman Mountain Dews in 1955 thus giving us prior dates.Also I would like to add that having the records for the Marion Bottling Company I have noticed something about the ordering process for ordering bottles from the same Owens Illinois plant that made these bottles.