Warner’s Safe Cure (embossed safe) London Eng. Toronto Canada, Rochester NY USA
Warner’s Safe Cure
London Eng. Toronto Canada, Rochester N.Y. U.S.A.
H. H. Warner & Co., Rochester, New York
Provenance: Michael & Kathie Craig Collection
The complexity, the vastness of the H. H. Warner empire, the sheer number of different bottles used by Warner, his triumphs, and his pitfalls prove that Warner was indeed the “King of the Patent Medicines.”
“Warner’s Safe Cure For Animals Only”was a special-order product that the druggist ordered from the Warner production facility in Rochester, New York. The cure sold for $1.25 a bottle, the same price as the pint-size Kidney and Liver Cure. Because it was a special-order item, this bottle maintains its relative scarcity in the bottle-collecting world.
Our red-amber museum bottle is embossed “Warner’s Safe Cure (embossed safe) London Eng. Toronto Canada, Rochester N.Y. U.S.A.” The oval bottle is 11 inches tall and 4.5 inches wide and contained 40 ounces of medicine. The label stated that the cure was “For Animals Only.” This bottle was produced with a double collar top, which indicates it went into production in 1882. Warner changed to a blob-top bottle for all his products in 1883. The pure size makes this a truly exciting bottle to see and hold.
Warner also produced a large “Mammoth Size” bottle in England. This was an economy size containing 40 ounces vs. the 16-ounce and 8-ounce regular-size bottles. The cure was not indicated for animal use in England. This bottle was used well into the 1900s and can be found in amber and several shades of green. Approximately six different molds exist for the English bottles, making it relatively more common than the U.S. version.
An interesting sidelight to the “Animal Cure” story comes from Michael Seeliger, who was at the time an avid Warner collector from Wisconsin. Stumbling into an antique store in Wisconsin in 1972, he found a large green animal cure London. He argued with the proprietor over whether the bottle was a reproduction or not but purchased it anyway for $22.
Seeliger was also informed that another “Animal Cure” existed in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and both had come in a container shipment from England. The other example was purchased for $18. This one was olive green vs. the apple green example previously purchased. Both bottles were shipped to Jack Stecher, the prevailing Warner expert, to get his opinion. Jack was unsure they were genuine, but he owned the only Pressburg Warner at the time, so they could be real. They were then shipped out to Rev. William Agee for his opinion. Rev. Agee was not sure either but included them reluctantly in his second book, Collecting All Cures stating that, if genuine, they are fantastic bottles while noting the color.
Primary Image: Large-size Warner’s Safe Cure bottle imaged by Alan DeMaison at the FOHBC Reno 2022 National Antique Bottle Convention mobile imaging station.
Support Images: Labeled “Warner’s Safe Cure For Animals Only” from the Terry and Ryan McMurray collection.
Support Image: Michael Seeliger holding his first found Warner’s Safe Cure London Animal Cure. Pictured in front of a small portion of the Michael and Kathie Craig collection.
Support: Reference to H. H. Warner His Company & His Bottles 2.0, Michael Seeliger, 2016.
Support: Reference to Collecting All Cures, Bill Agee, 1973.
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