Sunday, May 15, 2016
Digging Story: Ace Hits Stoneware, James Ryder Ginger Beer Bottle from Guelph
When I saw Ace post this image of a James Ryder Ginger Beer from Guelph on Flickr, I knew there had to be a backstory, and so I asked him for more narrative in the comments. Two weeks later, on a cold Sunday afternoon in May 2016, Ace replied to my request in an email.
____Ye Olde English____
___Stone Ginger Beer___
Mineral Water Manufacturer
___This Bottle Must Be___
__Returned Or Paid For__
Category: 4 Rare "
The same James Ryder Ginger Beer bottle is in the Guelph Museum and is described in their website archives as "Stoneware ginger beer bottle. Glazed, off-white and gold neck, black label, ceramic stopper with rubber ring attached to neck by wire. "James Ryder, Mineral Water Manufacturer". Stamped: "Ye Olde English Stone Ginger Beer". They do not attempt to date the piece.
Also present in the Guelph Museum are two clear glass bottles that hold 8 fluid ounces each. One is embossed "Ryder's High Class Mineral Waters, GUELPH" on the front. It also has an image of "Conveyor Belt with a Wheel". Bottle made in a mold between the years 1915 to 1925. The other clear glass bottle is also embossed with the same lettering but features a picture of "a well with a pulley system".
Ace emailed me this morning and wrote,
Here's the story for the James Ryder bottle, I was walking by a Guelph construction site and noticed some bottles lying around and one of the construction workers didn't seem to mind if I stopped by after hours to look around. When I came back in the evening I noticed the hole the backhoe had been digging earlier was mostly filled in again but there was one spot I could still dig myself. I dug up many junk bottles and was about to give up when I noticed a white stopper sticking out the side of the hill, I gently poked at it and it fell out and there appeared to be a top of a ginger beer bottle lying its side but I figured it probably wasn't intact so I didn't get my hopes up. I carefully dug it out and turned it over and to my surprise it was a James Ryder Ginger Beer bottle from Guelph and in one piece. I continued to dig a little longer for more good stuff but got nothing but junk. The hole has now been filled in again so I'm lucky to have at least found one good bottle. - Ace from Guelph