Back to Main Page

Antique Bottle Bottoms (Bases)



Part of identifying a bottle is describing what type of base (i.e. bottom) it has. The majority of bottles have a smooth base, indicating they were made sometime after the Civil War (1865). Before/during the Civil War, bottles had a pontil base.

Below are examples of some of the many different bases found on antique bottles.

Any help from the experts out there in improving this new page would be appreciated.

Boardman
Iron Pontil w/ graphite residue rusted but still intact
BOARDMAN NEW YORK Soda
S. Lays Sodawater La Porte Ind.
Iron Pontil w/ graphite residue still intact
S. Lays Sodawater La Porte Ind.

Iron Pontil with non-rusted graphite residue
Hunter/Shooting Calabash flask in amber

Open Pontil on Calabash-style historical flask.
Brant Indian
Tubular Pontil
BRANT'S INDIAN PULMONARY BALSAM
Bachs
"Donut" Pontil BACH'S AMERICAN COMPOUND with partial label

Open pontil
Dr. D. JAYNE S / CARMINATIVE / BALSAM / PHILADa

Open pontil with dimple
C. HEIMSTREET & CO. / TROY, N.Y.
Heinz
Smooth base with circular mold mark (called Owens ring) that is sometimes mistaken for a pontil.
H.J. HEINZ Pickle (ABM)
Heustis whiskey
Smooth base with circular upward indention that is sometimes mistaken for a cleaned iron pontil.
E.M. Heustis / Charlestown whiskey
Richmond Script Coke
Smooth base with embossing (there is never embossing on a pontil base).
amber Richmond VA Coca-Cola
Atlas Medicine
Smooth base with hinge mold mark, which leaves rough glass on edge of base (circled in red).
Altas Medicine from Henderson, NC

For more help, see:

  1. Meaning of marks on the base of bottles made in USA.

  2. Bottle Basics by Digger Odell


New User For Sale Auctions Questions Want to Buy Email/Web Clubs
Shows Books Magazines Newsletters News Groups Packing Shops
Classify Colors Tops Bases Condition Closures Companies
Digging Cleaning Glossary Famous Appraisals Dating Links