GXI-52 • “For Pike’s Peak” and Prospector – Hunter Shooting Deer Flask
GXI – 52
For Pike’s Peak” and Prospector – Hunter Shooting Deer
Midwestern, Possibly Ravenna Glass Works
Blue Green Aquamarine Half Pint
Provenance: Chip Cable Collection
Our Pike’s Peak historical flask commemorates the Pike’s Peak Gold Rush which was the boom in gold prospecting and mining in the Pike’s Peak Country of western Kansas Territory and southwestern Nebraska Territory of the United States that began in July 1858 and lasted until roughly the creation of the Colorado Territory on February 28, 1861.
This rich blue-green aquamarine half-pint pocket flask is attributed to a Midwest glasshouse which may have been Ravenna Glass Works in Ravenna, Ohio, from in the late 1850s. This flask, in outstanding condition, depicts a prospector and a hunter who must have inspired the drinker of westward-bound travel, surviving in nature, and the hopeful discovery of a rich gold claim.
The obverse side of the GXI-52 flask has an embossed prospector who is small, stocky, has thin arms, and a long large head. He is wearing a hat with a flat crown and narrow brim, a short loose coat, and full trousers. He has a long staff with two packs. A shovel is visible in the first and two tools can be seen in the second in the end. The staff is held by the prospector’s right hand and is resting on his left shoulder. A cane is in his left hand. There is a straight-neck cylindrical bottle, with no strap, hanging below the right arm. The prospector is walking to the right. Above the prospector and in a semicircle and large bold letters, is embossed copy in a transitional serif typestyle reading, ‘FOR PIKE’S PEAK.’
The reverse side of the flask depicts an embossed hunter, on the left, shooting a stag on the right. The hunter is small, with a large head. He is wearing a large hat with a flat crown and narrow brim; a long loose coat, and tight trousers. He is shooting from his right shoulder a gun from which smoke rises. There is no bottle hanging on his side. There is a large embossed stag facing right, pitching forward onto its knees.
The flask form is round-ended and oblong in cross-section. The half pint flask is typically found in aquamarine glass. Our rich blue-green example is iron pontiled and has a flared tooled mouth. The later examples have applied square collared mouths with a ring and have a smooth base.
Zebulon Montgomery Pike
Pike’s Peak in Colorado was named after Zebulon Montgomery Pike who was born on January 5, 1779, in Lamington, New Jersey. He was the son of Isabella (Brown) and Zebulon Pike and would follow in the footsteps of his father, who had begun his own career in the military service of the United States in 1775 at the beginning of the American Revolutionary War.
As a United States Army officer, Zebulon Pike led two expeditions through the Louisiana Purchase under the authority of President Thomas Jefferson. Pike’s expeditions coincided with other Jeffersonian expeditions, including the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the Red River Expedition in 1806. The first Pike expedition in 1805–1806 was to reconnoiter the upper northern reaches of the Mississippi River.
Upon return, Pike was ordered to mount a second expedition, this time to explore, map, and find the headwaters of the Arkansas and Red rivers. Additional objectives of this exploratory expedition into the southwestern part of the Louisiana Territory were to evaluate natural resources and establish friendly relations with Native Americans. Beginning July 15, 1806, Pike led what became known as the “Pike Expedition.”
In early November 1806, Pike and his team sighted and tried to climb to the summit of the peak later named after him. They made it as far as Mt. Rosa, located southeast of Pike’s Peak, before giving up the ascent in waist-deep snow. They had already gone almost two days without food.
The expedition then continued south, searching for the Red River’s headwaters, and built a fort for shelter during the winter. However, they had crossed the border, whether through confusion or deliberation, and Spanish colonial authorities captured Pike and some of his party on February 26, 1807, near Santa Fe. Pike and his men were sent to Chihuahua (present-day Mexico) for interrogation. Later in 1807, Pike and some of his men were escorted by the Spanish through Texas and released near American territory in Louisiana.
In 1810, Pike published an account of his expeditions, a book so popular that it was translated into several languages for publication in Europe. He later achieved the rank of brigadier general in the American Army and served during the War of 1812, until he was killed during the Battle of York in April 1813, outside the British colonial capital of Upper Canada.
In 2000, the late John M. Eatwell and David K. Clint lll published a book titled Pike’s Peak Gold to commemorate Zebulon Montgomery Pike. This book was released at the FOHBC 2000 National Antique Bottle Exposition in Denver, Colorado.
Primary Image: The GXI-52 Prospector and “For Pike’s Peak” – Hunter Shooting Deer Historical Flask imaged on location by Alan DeMaison, FOHBC Virtual Museum Midwest Studio
Support: Reference to American Bottles and Flasks and Their Ancestry by Helen McKearin and Kenneth M. Wilson, Crown Publishers Inc., New York, 1978.
Support: Reference to Pike’s Peak Gold by John M. Eatwell & David K. Clint lll
Support Image: Auction Lot 86: Prospector And “For Pike’s Peak” – Hunter Shooting Deer Historical Flask, America, 1860-1870. Aquamarine, applied mouth with ring – smooth base, half pint. GXI-52 A comparatively scarce flask with a good mold impression. Fine condition. Timothy and Christine Hill collection. – Norman Heckler Jr. & Sr., Norman C. Heckler & Company, Auction #151
Support Image: Auction Lot 89: “For Pike’s Peak” And Prospector – Hunter Shooting Deer Historical Flask, America, 1860-1870. Light greenish aquamarine, applied mouth with ring – smooth base, half pint. GXI-52 Beautiful color and crude applied mouth. Listed as comparatively scarce. Fine condition. – Norman Heckler Jr. & Sr., Norman C. Heckler & Company, Auction #145
Support Image: Auction Lot 220: “For Pike’s Peak” And Prospector – Hunter Historical Flask, America, 1860-1870. Light blue green, applied square collared mouth with ring – smooth base, half pint; (shallow 1/16 inch flake off base edge). GXI-52 A beautiful light color. Fine condition. Carl Sturm collection. – Norman Heckler Jr. & Sr., Norman C. Heckler & Company, Auction #105
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