Amber crown top bottle with Benicia? rainbow staining

edited January 2023 in Question and Answer

I found this old bottle thrift shopping. It has an iridescent patina, but unfortunately I know very little

about the bottle. I have found a few bottles similar to this one that are labeled as Benicia bottles. Does anyone have any other information that could be helpful in identifying the age and type of bottle?

The bottom reads AB Co 5


  • Thanks for posting this.

    You have done some good sleuthing... Benicia glass does indeed have that iridescent multi-color appearance that your bottle does but it is not unique to bottles buried in those particular mudflats. Any buried bottle can get this but more often than not the staining has a white appearance and is not particularly colorful.

    The AB CO marking on the base is very helpful in this case for dating the bottle. The book, BOTTLE MAKERS AND THEIR MARKS, indicates this is the American Bottle Company of Chicago and they used this mark only from 1905 to 1916. Therefore your bottle dates to the early days of the crown top closure.

    I am thinking this may be a beer bottle but also likely a malt beverage (low alcohol or non-alcohol) which were very popular at that time. Johann Hoff of the same era is probably the best known such product.

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