The Charles & Jane Aprill Blue Gallery

The Charles & Jane Aprill Blue Gallery

01 June 2012 (R•030817)

Apple-Touch-IconAYou can be sure of two things when you come across a picture from the collection of Charles and Jane Aprill from New Orleans. The first is that the glass piece will be extrtaordinary. The second, it will most likely be blue. Here are a few pictures I have grouped together of some of the blue Aprill pieces. I plan to add more.

A photo with the right spirit! Charles and Jane Aprill, February 1976 – Ft. Lauderdale, Florida – photo Dana Charlton-Zarro

Charles, in a recent email stated “Historically, Jane and I started collecting in the 60’s. We liked all genres. We decided one could not have everything so we decided to try to get the best we could from each group, but in blue. Flasks, medicines, inks, bitters, cures, whiskeys colognes, sodas, sarsaparillas, cathedrals jars. etc. Along the way we were distracted by creamers and snuffs and other “not blue” items.”

“She’s the one who provoked me into being a very serious collector. She went up to Skinners and got Charlie Gardner’s gallon Harrison’s ink and Willington 1/2 gallon amber pickle. She pushed to get Sam Greer’s 1/2 gallon Wynkoop. Much more and the light of my life as well.”

Charles noting the influence of his wife Jane

The attached photo was taken at the 1976 St. Louis Expo – perhaps the greatest bottle show ever – where the Aprills set up a blue bottle display. It was displays like this that made the ’76 Expo a truly significant event – never to be repeated due to its place in time. – Eric McGuire.

Petal jars. 1/2 gallon and two quarts. All “iron” pontils. Some pontiled blue jars not in an auction. – Charles Aprill

A whimsey hat made from a “Boardman Mineral water mold. – Charles Aprill


!/2 Gallon and Quart size free blown jars. “open” pontils” – Charles Aprill

I sat in the front row of a small auction house in Bolton, Mass. Early Skinners. The blue fish came up I raised my hand to bid, but it was well over estimate and beyond my imagination. 1972. My understanding is that this was the first American antique bottle to sell for “over a thousand dollars”. I got it from the winner two decades later. I don’t know its history before the Skinner auction. – Charles April

Embossed Cummingham on base, “iron” pontil. – Charles Aprill

There is a nice piece about this flask in the Auction catalog. Item #525. They got it from a Canadian dealer, sight unseen, for approval. Opened the package late one night, on returning from a trip, “weary”. When he saw it, The Judge was “wide awake” and they stayed up several more hours ” washing and admiring” the bottle. – Charles Aprill

Wells, Miller, Provost. Open pontils, 91/2 and 81/2″ specimens – Charles Aprill

The larger are T.K.Finlay, The smaller are John J. Pope. Both embossed N. Orleans or New Orleans. Both have “iron pontils”. I’m taking photos with a “old man” phone. It just doesn’t do justice. – Charles Aprill

Cattell’s Gift Cologne/ Fulton St./Brooklyn. Iron pontil. Next to C. Heimstreet. – Charles Aprill

“C. Heimstreet” and “Liquid Bread”, full labels. – Charles Aprill

Harrison inks, cylinders on left, panels on right. 9 in all. The two small paneled Harrison’s are just fine. Not as common as the cylinders. Mebane had the larger. He never did get a good tiny one. The half gallon is ex: Charles Gardner collection. The three 12 panel inks on the right are scarce. Harrison really did use very pretty bottles – Charles Aprill

Caspers Whiskey next to a Figural Grape – Aprill Collection

We collect blue things, including INKS. They are so tiny and jewel like. – Charles April

Dancing Indian cologne. The blue one is mint, perfect. Jane got this at a Las Vegas show in the late 70’s. The dealer was a western dude covered with Turquoise jewelry (watchband, bracelet, neck piece, belt buckle and more. Provenance unknown. – Charles April

Harrison inks. Right 4 and 5/8 inch cylinder. Left, handles “cup” whimsey, blown in the Harrison ink mold. – Charles Aprill

This Dr. Leriemondie’s is “as dug” in 1973 in New Orleans. Outside washed once. Sapphire blue, round “sand” pontil. – Charles Aprill

This is a J. DUNBAR’S / CORDIAL SCHNAPPS. My only Schnapps. – Charles Aprill

Two blue-green pitchers. Big one is just 3″ tall. Not Pitkin, but pretty. – Charles Aprill

GV-1a., a Lockport glass works product. ex: Paul Richards collection. – Charles Aprill

Read more: More on Harrison’s Columbian Inks

Read more: Both Blue Fish Together Again – at least online!

Read more: The GIV Eagle Masonic Historical Flask

Read more: The big star in Hollywood, Mississippi is the Imperial Levee

About Ferdinand Meyer V

Ferdinand Meyer V is a native of Baltimore, Maryland and has a BFA in Fine Art and Graphic Design from the Kansas City Art Institute and School of Design. Ferdinand is the founding Principal of FMG Design, a nationally recognized design consultation firm. Ferdinand is a passionate collector of American historical glass specializing in bitters bottles, color runs and related classic figural bottles. He is married to Elizabeth Jane Meyer and lives in Houston, Texas with their daughter and three wonderful grandchildren. The Meyers are also very involved in Quarter Horses, antiques and early United States postage stamps. Ferdinand is the past 6-year President of the Federation of Historical Bottle Collectors and is one of the founding members of the FOHBC Virtual Museum.
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5 Responses to The Charles & Jane Aprill Blue Gallery

  1. Charles Aprill says:

    Thank you very much. Jane and Ireally do appreciate the display.
    Charles Aprill

  2. Charles Aprill says:

    Thank you for a lovely display, of nice things photographed badly with a phone.
    May I add a few more pieces? How do I do that?
    Thanks, again, Charles Aprill

    • Charles…Best just to email pics to me. I size, retouch, crop, etc if necessary. Also send captions as you have been doing. So many people don’t which baffles me.


  3. sandchip says:

    Killers. The old door in the background is sweet, too.

  4. bottle.kid says:

    Incredible collection, really outstanding!

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