Dating old kerr jars
However, most of the typically found early versions, at least those being made by the late 1880s, are marked “CHESEBROUGH MFG CO [ arched] above “VASELINE.” (This style is shown as the first example on the far left in the group of 4 jars).
These jars are typically made of clear or off-clear glass, handblown, and have tooled lips, styled for a cork closure. Example on far left is one of the earliest types, handblown with a tooled lip, circa 1880s/1890s.
Jars carrying this embossing, often with other monograms, numbers, letters, etc., were widely produced until about 1920. The identities of many actual manufacturers are unknown.
Lightning jars represent an important advancement in the history of home canning and are still a part of American culture.
The earliest advertisements for the Lightning jar date back to the year 1885. Putnam was the man behind the marketing of the Lightning jars and making them popular. Putnam also held exclusive ownership of the patents, and for many years, claimed the impressive profits from selling the jars.
The Lightning jars were made by a number of glass companies in several states including Lyndeboro Glass, Lindboro, NH; Edward H. Interestingly, Putnam was living in San Diego at the time but it is not known if any California company made his jars glass.
Minor variations in the exact wording is seen on different examples. " data-medium-file="https:// data-large-file="https:// class="size-large wp-image-2313" alt="Later versions including amber glass types.
Chesebrough may have been producing his product for a few years before it was actually patented under the name Vaseline. Wilson (1981), in which an unmarked bottle, found at an early fort site in Laramie, WY, has remnants of a Chesebrough label.
The jar illustrated is of a generic style termed a “pomade” in early glass bottle makers’ catalogs.
This marking is just one of a variety of embossing variations found on the face of earlier Vaseline (petroleum jelly) jars made of glass.
Vaseline was patented in 1872 (patent #127,568) by Robert Augustus Chesebrough, doing business as Chesebrough Manufacturing Company, based in Perth Amboy, New Jersey.