F. Chevalier & Co Whiskey Demijohn

Provenance: Stephen Hubbell Collection

When you think of F. Chevalier Whiskey, you think of their bottles embossed Old Bourbon Castle Whiskey or, better yet, the Chevalier bottles with the embossed “castle.” While we certainly have some great examples pictured here, our subject bottle is a Chevalier small demijohn in an unusual shape and olive-yellow striated color.

The embossed sans-serif copy occurs within an embossed oval border line creating a circle. The top concave arch reads, ‘F. CHEVALIER & Co’. There is no period after the “o,” which is lower case. Centered in the middle of the oval is straightline horizontal copy reading ‘WHISKEY MERCHANTS.’ Completing the bottom half of the circle is ‘PACIFIC COAST AGENTS,’ in a concave arch. The pale yellow neck is long, terminating with a slightly tapered mouth and ring.

See our museum example of F Chevaliers Old Castle Whiskey with a spiral neck.

From History of the New California – Its Resources and People, Volume II, The Lewis Publishing Company – 1905, Edited by Leigh H. Irvine

The F. Chevalier Company of San Francisco, which is now one of the most complete wholesale liquor houses in the west, is likewise one of the oldest firms of the kind on the Pacific coast, and it has a history of a long-continued and successful existence as can be instanced by almost any commercial enterprise in California.

The firm of F. Chevalier and Co. was founded in Placerville, California, by the late Fortune Chevalier, in the year 1857. The business was shortly afterward moved to Sacramento and there carried on till 1870 when the increasing importance of the house and its expanding operations necessitated its removal to San Francisco.

In 1872, their celebrated Castle whiskies were protected by a trade-mark deposited in the United States patent office at Washington, and since then re-registered and filed for record, and from that date, the firm, by progressive methods and honorable dealings, has steadily widened its scope of usefulness and added to its resources.

The firm now occupies the centrally located and spacious quarters at Nos. 9, 11, 13 and 15 Beale street, San Francisco, and has traveling representatives covering the entire Pacific coast, besides resident agents at various centers throughout the eastern states.

Much attention has also been devoted by this progressive house to the manufacture of a full line of cordials, liquors, cremes, syrups, essences, fruit juices and other delicacies in demand in the up-to-date saloon and cafe of the period, so that, although primarily whiskey merchants, the F. Chevalier Co. have also succeeded in making their establishment a complete liquor house, where every liquor liable to be required by the dealer may be found in stock, representative of the finest types and at rates equal to those of even any house making a specialty of such articles.

Primary Image: The F. Chevalier Whiskey bottle imaged on location by Alan DeMaison, FOHBC Virtual Museum Midwest Studio

Support: Reference to Fortune Chevalier and the Picture Castles 1890-1919 by Ben Kutzkey, Bottles and Extras March-April 2008

Support Images: The majority of bottle images are courtesy of Jeff Wichmann and American Bottle Auctions

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