The Bluefield Daily Telegraph ran a small blurb in their July 10, 1914 edition announcing a new corporation which was going to be opening soon in Princeton, WVA. This corporation would consist of a garage and bottling works, and was started with $10,000 capital. The incorporators mentioned in the blurb are F. A. Richardson, C. P. Hockenberry, D. J. Meister, C. L. Richardson, all of Roanoke, VA, and S. S. Marsh of Portsmouth, VA.(1) D. J. Meister is listed as president, and C. P. Hackenberry business manager.(1) It was also announced that the company would build a three story brick building on a 129x42 foot lot on Mercer Street.(1)

I have a feeling that this company, which isnít named, is none other than the Princeton Motors Company which not only had a garage but also a bottler, the odds are far too long for there to be two such entities in Princeton at the same time. On the 1915 Sanborn maps for the area there is indeed a new building with a garage in the front part of the building, and a bottling room in back of that on the first floor, and a Paint shop on the second floor which would also include a vulcanizing department by 1923. The odd thing is that the building they built appears to be a two story building instead of a three story.

As stated they appear to still be bottling as of 1923; however, by 1930 the bottling operation and the vulcanizing departments are gone and the first floor is just a garage, and the second floor is painting. This building is empty by 1945. When I was first approached via email about these bottles my first thought was 'What would a motor company be doing using crown top bottles?' I assumed, like everyone else who I have talked to about this bottle, that they were bottling motor oil or some other lubricant in these bottles; however, with the bottling works figuring so prominently in the announcement of the company, I can only assume that they were indeed hedging their bets with two very different types of enterprises in case one failed. Which of course the bottling works eventually did in the face of other national brand bottlers in the Princeton area. I have yet to uncover any ads for the company.

Princeton Motors Co. Bottling Dep't bottle

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(1) Bluefield Daily Telegraph July 10, 1914