Thanks for the great commentary on the C&I fifths and the relationship of the S.H.M. and the Stuarts moulds. I went back and reviewed a posting we had two years ago about the Wilmerding bottles ...What a tangled web we weave. Many of the questions or theories that were raised have been answered/debunked. Good on you guys! That is one of the original goals of the site, to form ideas or theories, and to put them out for comment. Sometimes the comments or push back are meaningful and constructive, sometimes not so much. I've discovered that no matter how obscure of a little detail that I have noticed about a particular bottle, when it is finally spoken of... other collectors had noticed it as well. Some have even formed a theory as to why. When a few people start commenting on it, someone will try to find the answer. It's human nature.. answer the question, solve the problem, dig deeper and prove the prevailing consensus wrong.
I agree with A.P. about the age of the C&I - S.H.M... post 1880. Which means the Stuarts ( if using that S.H.M. mould) would be ? ? ? 1882?, 1884?...????
I think the C&I - Mckennas made it's appearance in the late 1870's. I'm hanging my hat on the fact that I found three broken ones in a privy at a small Utah smelter town that was in operation from 1875 -1879. Is my sample trustworthy? I'm not positive. Other bottles in the hole were '70's, the hole had not been previously dug.
Either way, I have a small problem with the two Mckennas bottles. Why would they need two moulds?
Look, in my little brain, I'm perfectly fine with the S.H.M. bottles. Curved leg R variety.. early 1874-1877/8, C&I base variety... appeared a few years later - 1880/2 - 1884? whatever. Maybe the brand was reintroduced, ???? maybe the first mould was damaged.
The Mckenna's bottles overlap in dates of usage! The curved R variety - what? 1876-1883 or 84 or 1885. When were the toolies made? If the C&I Mckennas are running from 1879/80 - 1882/83 or so, there is that overlap! Reading Warren's glass works research gave me a better idea about how many bottles are being produced from these moulds. Two moulds for Mckennas, with the western -curved leg R variety being both older and newer than the C&I variety. Whew!! I guess there is an answer to the riddle out there, somewhere. Will it answer the question as to the origin of these western C&I moulds?? Are they western?? For years, the C.W. Stuarts bottle had the Cassin's back half as part of it's mould. 'Till it didn't !!