THE INDIAN HERB BITTERS
aka ‘Kansas City Queen’
PREPARED BY DRS DICKERSON & STARK
27 September 2012 (R•101515) (R•031716)
First of all, I have written about this special queen before (Read: Ladies & Gents…The Kansas City Queen) as it was an incredible story earlier this year. Now I want to circle back with some cleaned up pictures and comparison images (see above) and thoughts related to the Browns, Pharazyn, Mohawk and Long Queens (pictured above). This will also be the last of the ‘Queen’ series though there are other ‘knock off’ and later reproductions and facsimiles of the form.
Again I am thinking that this bottle was made by the same glass makers of the other queens and the proprietors were tagging on to the popularity of the Brown’s Celebrated Indian Herb Bitters put out by Neal Brown in Philadelphia. Just conjecture but probably made at the Whitney Brothers Glass Works.
The bottle has the same form as the Mohawk and Pharazyn Queens which means a high shield in one arm and the sword in the opposite hand. There is an abundance of copy on the shield and dress of the Indian making for quite a self contained marketing piece. Only two examples are known to exist.
What is most puzzeling to me is the embossed copy reading ‘MEDICAL & SURGICAL INSTITUTE KANSAS CITY MO’ and ‘SEND FOR OUR ILLUSTRATED MEDICAL JOURNAL IT WILL BE SENT FREE TO ANY ADDRESS’. I have found some great information on D’Estaing Dickerson that really sheds light on this product.
The Carlyn Ring and W.C. Ham listing in Bitters Bottles is as follows:
I-18 THE INDIAN HERB BITTERS aka ‘Kansas City Queen’
THE / INDIAN / HERB BITTERS / PREPARED BY / DRS DICKERSON / & STARK / MEDICAL & / SURGICAL / INSTITUTE / KANSAS CITY / MO // SEND FOR OUR ILLUSTRATED MEDICAL JOURNAL / IT WILL BE SENT FREE TO ANY ADDRESS //
12 3/8 x 3
Figure of Indian queen, Amber, SCM, Extremely rare
Kansas City Directory 1886; John Stark and D’Estaing Dickerson, 427 Delaware Ave.
Read: Surgical Institute Bitters
Dr. D’Estaing Dickerson
Dr. D’Estaing Dickerson, a physician in Kansas City born in New York in 1835 and formerly serving as the “surgeon-in-charge of the Sing-Sing prison hospital,” arriving in Kansas City in the 1870s and co-founding the Western Medical and Surgical Instiute.
Dr. John Stark
Read More: Looking closer at the Brown’s Celebrated Indian Herb Bitters
Read More: H. Pharazyn Indian Queen – Philadelphia
Read More: Mohawk Whiskey Pure Rye Indian Queen
Read More: E. Longs Indian Herb Bitters
Read More: Why do we call the bottles the ‘Indian Queen?’
Read More: The Rubenesque Queens
Read More: Barrel series – Original Pocahontas Bitters
Nice piece and interesting. By now “anonymous” should have stepped forward. Are the crisp close-up pics of the K.C. Queen from the ultimate buyer, or the intermediary who bought the bottle at the St. Joe, Mo. show?
Jeff: I just cleaned up the pics from the original buyer. Still ‘anonymous’.
I wonder given that Dr. Dickerson was quite wealthy in that time if he could have just ordered a relatively small amount of these, instead of a mass or larger produced product as in the Brown’s bitters. Hard to say of course. Great series on these beautiful figural queens F!
I don’t understand your reasoning. Why should Anoymous have stepped forward by now? Wouldn’t that defeat the meaning/purpose of the word?
The bottle is still being cleaned, slowly, of a black substance in the bottom.
I’m not sure that it will ever see the light of day.
Everyone knows it exists.
I just believe that when someone pays as much as the person who bought it did, they are entitled to whatever sense of privacy they desire.
Bill- I consider our Bitters collecting community fairly close-knit and therefore relatively transparent. When a great and rare purchase such as this is made, most collectors would share their joy and excitement with fellow collectors. The price paid has nothing to do with it.
Staying in the shadows, while the owners right, does not seem to be in the true spirit of collecting to me. It really seems a bit odd. At least we have the pictures Ferdinand has chosen to share on this site. Thanks Ferdinand!
You both make good points. Obviously the new owner can do as they please and remain anonymous. Their choice. My bigger concern is getting better images for the Virtual Museum. Fortunately other discrete collectors are stepping forward and contacting me with open invites to photograph and access their collections. Of course a person can still have a bottle in the museum and remain anonymous. With the KC Queen I remain curious but not disappointed. Maybe disappointed that Jeff and I have not figured it out. 🙂