Ash Tonic Bitters – John C. Horting, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
15 October 2015
The Ash Tonic Bitters was a surprise in the Conestoga Auction Company event last Saturday when the Nolt Collection of Whiskey Memorabilia was auctioned off in a live and web event. This was all Lancaster, Pennsylvania material so this bottle fit right in as it was from John C. Horting, a well-known local liquor merchant.
This puppy went for $5,000 plus an auction house premium of 21%. Hoochie Mama. What is interesting here is that the bottle is not embossed bitters and is labeled rather nicely on the front and back. It also appears to be an unlisted bitters that will need to be picked up in the forthcoming Bitters Bottles Supplement 2.
Most bitters collectors will immediately recognize that the bottle shape and color is the same as the Dr. Lowe’s Celebrated Stomach Bitters & Nerve Tonic (see below) from Cleveland, Ohio. It is also the same bottle as the extremely rare, Uncle Sams Bitters (also see further below). Obviously John C. Horting and probably many other liquor and bitters merchants, used the unembossed bottle to carry their brands and labels.