Aqua Blue Fischs Bitters Bottles 3" and 6" Made in Taiwan

I am wondering about the value of 3" and 6" Fischs Bitters fish-shaped bottles. The only other marking is Made in Taiwan on the bottom of the fish bottle. Detailed with fish scales, eyes, etc. Perfect condition.


  • Hi and welcome.

    Don't quit your day job just yet. One will find a little interest for these reproduction / replica type bottles for decorative purposes but they are common and I would say even $10 is a reach most days.

  • Novelties. No significant collector value, but read about fish bottles here:

    They ain't The Fish or Doctor Fisch's bitters bottles but...
    Cecil Munsey

    Even before the art of glass blowing was discovered in about 100 B.C.,
    artisans working with glass produced figural bottles. One of the earliest known
    bottles shaped like a fish was unearthed at Tell-El-Amarna, Egypt. Evidence
    indicates that this pre-blown bottle was buried between 1350 and 1375 B.C.

    Throughout glass manufacturing history glassblowers have produced, and
    still do produce, fish-shaped bottles. In America perhaps the most popular of all
    fish-shaped bottles are ones patented in 1866 by W.H. Ware. These two 11 1/2"
    tall fish bottles were used for "DOCTOR FISCH'S BITTERS" and "THE FISH
    BITTERS." While both bottles are mostly found in shades of amber, the latter is
    found in other colors which are considered rare.

    in 1922, 56 years after W.H. Ware brought his fish bottles to market, Eli
    Lilly & Company brought their version to market. Indeed, it was an inspiration of
    one of Ware's fish-shaped bottles, found in an antiques shop, that caused the Eli
    Lilly & Company one(s) to be produced.
    In 1921, the Eli Lilly firm was using over 100 different bottles to contain its
    pharmaceutical products. It was suggested by Eli Lilly's wife, who had really
    taken a fancy to to the then recently discovered fish-shaped bitters bottle of the
    1860s, that the old bottle be used as a model to manufacture a fish bottle for their
    "Lilly's pure Lofoten Cod Liver Oil." The suggestion was taken and over an 11-
    year period (1922-1933), four basic sizes of the Eli Lilly Cod Liver Oil Fish bottle
    were produced and distributed.
    The four fish-shaped bottles produced for Eli Lilly & Company were made
    of amber glass and measure 3", 6 1/4", 8 1/4", and 9 3/4". The first of the four to
    be made for the pharmaceutical firm was the 8 1/4" one; it was produced in 1922.
    The 3" miniature fish bottle was first produced in 1924 and never actually
    contained a product; it was used as a salesman's sample. The 9 3/4" bottle was
    also introduced in 1924. The 6 1/4" bottles was first manufactured in 1927.

    Between 1930 and 1933 at least two of the three largest of the Lilly fish bottles
    were produced with screw-on caps as a closure. The originals were all corksealed

    The three largest of the Lilly fish bottles were manufactured by the
    Fairmont Glass Company if Indianapolis, Indiana. The miniature or salesman's
    sample bottle was manufactured by the T.C. Wheaton Company (now the
    Wheaton Glass Company) of Millville, New Jersey.

    An early 1923 advertisement by Eli Lilly & Company which ran in a
    number of the trade journals of the time, called the new fish-shaped bottle a "Cod
    Bottle." The advertisement offered druggists, "Very attractive selling helps
    bearing your business card printed in type to match the text will be supplied for
    counter distribution, enclosing with packages, statements etc." The
    advertisements also mentions that the wholesale price of the 8 1/4" pint bottles
    filled with cod liver oil was $6.10 per dozen.

    While the Lilly "Cod Bottles" were discontinued in 1933, the original molds
    of the three largest sizes were retained by the Fairmont Glass Company and
    ended up in the possession of Cedric C. Rau whose family owned and operated
    the Fairmont Glass Company
    Well, as the title of this piece maintains: they are collectible and always
    will be because of their fish shape. In the early 1970s the Eli Lilly "Cod Bottles"
    were selling for not much more than they are today:
    Cod Bottle Year First 1972 1992
    Size Manufactured Value Value
    8 1/4" 1922 $20 $25
    9 3/4" 1924 $12 $25
    3" 1924 $100 $150
    6 1/4" 1927 $15 $25

    Prices for the fish-shaped bottles blown in the molds developed in the
    1920s and 1930s for the Eli Lilly firm are not especially high for a number of
    reasons. Many thousands of the original bottles were manufactured and
    marketed by Eli Lilly & Company. As early as 1970 Cedric C. Rau had the
    6 1/4" bottle reproduced by the Imperial Glass Company in Bellaire, Ohio.

    Sometime around 1980, after the first attempt at reproducing the 6 1/4" bottle, the
    other sizes (except for the 3" miniature salesman's sample) were reproduced by
    the Glass Containers Corporation which said they were "...pleased to present you
    with this unique series of bottles, made from the original molds, as a reminder
    that glass has wit as well as utility, and that the shape things are in has always
    mattered." The number of reproduced bottles in either run is not known. That
    has served to help keep the value of the reproduction Cod Bottles down to next
    to nothing -- I purchased two sets for $10 in 1989.

    Collectors should note that the trick to identifying the bottles reproduced in
    the original molds seems to be in the closure area. The reproduction bottles
    have hand finished lips and in most cases the lip is flat instead of rounded as in
    the originals which were made by the Owens automatic blowing machine. The
    Owens machine produced a seam all the way to the top of the bottle's mouth as
    is common in completely machine-made bottles. This may be the only case
    where the machine-made bottle is more valuable than the hand-finished one!
    It doesn't seem to matter much today whether or not a particular Eli Lilly &
    Company fish bottle is original or one of the reproductions. The value of either
    type seems to be insignificant enough so as not to bother collectors who buy
    them one way or the other.

    Perhaps, after 100+ years more attention will be paid to the originals and reproductions and their very slight differences. It may very
    well be the same scenario as with the famous E.G. Booz cabin-shaped whiskey
    bottle. That bottle has been reproduced so many times that obtaining an original
    is expensive and chancey at best. Only expert bottle collectors can tell the
    difference in the earliest of reproductions of cabin bottle. And sometimes they
    make mistakes.

    Once again, "they ain't The Fish or Doctor Fisch's bitters bottles but...."
  • What about this tiny bottle it stands just under 2” has made in taiwan on bottom and biters on one side and what looks to be RSCHS on other side?
  • Thank you, great information
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