Thursday, March 25, 2010


Here is a nice early brand.   G.O. Blake patent application in March 1872 indicates that they had not used the Trademark as of that date,  but were about ready to start.

Pond, Reynolds  ~~~ More, Reynolds.    Here is my run... 3 on the left are Pond, Reynolds.   The dark one has that reddish or almost a slight puce tint that you sometimes find in the early fifths. 

We don't find these in UT.   Two of the later Clark's,  Samual More bottles were found here. 
The strong hold for these Blakes is in Nevada.   In, and around, Austin and Eureka.   


These are big bodied fifths..  "the big boys" as I called them before.   I measured around several of my fifths for some comparison...  Blakes, Pond-Reynolds - 26.2 cm,   Cutter, Hotaling non crown - 26.1 cm,  J.F. Cutter, the later curved R variant - 25.5 cm.    This later J.F. is noticeably more slender than the older variants.   Just more capacity reduction going on I guess.   E. Marting figured it out,  Hotaling figured it out, probably Moore, Hunt as well... haven't measured.  Getting about 12 extra fifths per barrel with the slightly smaller "fifth".
These old boy's...  Reynolds & More... can't blame Pond I guess... stayed with that same mould for all those years.   How much would a new mould have cost??      

I related the story of early digger Willie M. of Austin.   He and 3 buddies dug in the Reese River area in the 1960's and 1970's.   Permissions were easy for Willie,  he lived in town and knew everyone.  That was before out of town digging pressure had ramped up the blood pressure of the locals.   Anyway, they had dug a bunch of bottles,  a bunch of good bottles... Austin is a bourbon town, needless to say they had a few nice fifths.   They had cut into a huge trash layer during some U.S. 50 roadwork back in the day... kept the boys in digging for the entire summer.    About the time that ran out,  and other immed. hot spots had played out,  Willie decided to get working on the 'honey do' list.  How about that little addition to the house.  
Digging the footings for the addition, Willie clipped part of the top off a small privy.   Small but loaded!!
Kinda like the great Teakettle dig,  these things grow and grow.   Just last year I had a shop owner in Austin tell me Willie found 35 Blakes in that hole.  I visited with Willie in 1996 and he told me he had found 14.  All but one in good shape.  Not a bad backyard find..   I wonder what his digging buddies backyards looked like after Willie hit the jackpot! 



  2. Now that's a killer line-up of Blakes! These have always been one of my favorite Western 5ths. Is the dark one in the center a Pond Reynolds???

  3. We're seeking to learn George O. Blake's family genealogy, for a biography of his probable second cousin, Colonel John Y.F. Blake of the Irish Brigade in the Boer War, 1899-1902. George Blake's middle name might be Owen, and he may be the grandson of John William Blake, born in Winnsboro, SC, 15 January 1781, and John's probable wife, Rebecca "Becky" Henson. Please contact Brian P. Blake,


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