NORTON’S Eureka Bitters
New Boston, Mass.
22 November 2013
Daniel Baldwin put up these killer pictures of a labeled Norton’s Eureka Bitters (top and below) today on Facebook. I wasn’t familiar with the brand but found out the following:
Lyman Curtiss Norton was born in Otis, Massachusetts on 14 January 1822. Otis is a small town in Berkshire County. It is part of the Pittsfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,365 at the 2000 census [Wikipedia].
His occupations are listed throughout his life as commercial traveler, laborer, farmer, traveling salesman, peddler and eventually a proprietor.
I get a lonely feeling looking up information for this man as I see no real business like a drug store or title like a physician. His occupations are listed throughout his life as commercial traveler, laborer, farmer, traveling salesman, peddler, merchant and eventually a proprietor. I picture him going from door to door most of his life trying to sell any possible thing he could. At one point around 1880 he turns into a proprietor and manufacturer of Mrs. Murphy’s Liniment and Eureka Bitters. This was his zenith and eureka moment I suppose. Four years later he dies of heart failure.
Mr. Norton spent most of his life in Sandisfield, Berkshire County, Massachusetts. I have no clue why he put ‘New Boston’ on his labels.
On his tombstone he has the phrase “I Still Live”. Well Mr. Norton, you do my friend “still live”. We have found your bottle and remember your effort.
The Carlyn Ring and W. C. Ham listing in Bitters Bottles is as follows:
N 43 … Norton’s Eureka Bitters
L. C. Norton, Sole proprietor, New Boston, Massachusetts
8 34/ x 3 1/4 x 2 (6 1/2)
Rectangular, Amber 3, sp.
Also known 9 x 3 3/8 x 2 1/8 (6 1/2) 7/8
1 and 2 cent Proprietary stamps
1822: Birth January 14, 1822, Lyman Curtiss Norton in Otis, Massachusetts, parents capt. Jonathan Norton and Anna Clark.
1843: Lyman C. Norton, Militia, Otis, Massachusetts, Massachusetts, Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988.
1847: Marriage Roxey L. Baird, August 27, 1847.
1850: Lyman C. Norton, Laborer, 1850 U.S. Federal Census, Age 27 in 1850, Tyringham, Berkshire, Massachusetts, Wife Roxey
1863: Lyman C Norton, residence Sandisfield, Massachusetts, age 34, Peddler, married, born Otis, Rheumatism bad, U.S., Civil War Draft Registrations Records, 1863-1865
1863: Daughter Libbie born
1870: Lyman C. Norton, Peddler, 1870 U.S. Federal Census, Age 48 in 1870, Sandisfield, Berkshire, Massachusetts, Wife Roxey
1880: Lyman C. Norton, Manufacturer, 1880 U.S. Federal Census, Age 58 in 1880, Massachusetts, Wife Roxey, Father Jonathan, Sandisfield, Berkshire, Massachusetts
1885: Lyman C. Norton listing for Eureka Bitters – Gazetteer of Berkshire County, Mass., 1725-1885 – 1885
1889: Death, Lyman C. Norton, Otis, October 14, 1889, heart failure, traveling salesman, father Jonathan, mother Anna, Sandisfield, Berkshire County, Massachusetts, Death Records, 1841-1915 (see grave marker below)