Near century and a half old bottle found at Dead Dog Bay


The remains of this intriguing old bottle were found by an elderly Surfdale woman walking at Dead Dog Bay the other day.
Of black or very dark green glass, clearly very old and much thicker than present day bottles, she passed it on to Gulf News and remarkably it proved relatively easy to trace, due to the ‘Cooper and Wood, Portobello’ branding clearly legible on the bottom.
Thanks to the Internet it is established the bottle was manufactured by Cooper and Wood in Portobello, Scotland, between 1859 and 1866. Glass bottle manufacture had begun about 1848 and in 1856 Richard Cooper became a partner, and in 1859 was joined by his brother-in-law Thomas Wood, a partnership which lasted only until 1866 when they had a disagreement although both apparently continued to manufacture bottles in different companies until being absorbed into Distillers Co. Ltd in 1928.
Our bottle would have contained either wine or beer and probably came to Waiheke in a sailing ship in the pioneer days. •

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