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How Sprite Bottles Turned a Nationwide Park Service Commercial – MSU Campus Archaeology Program


Whereas wanting by way of the artifacts recovered from the 2020 Service Street challenge, the CAP crew discovered an attention-grabbing inexperienced glass bottle fragment. After additional investigation, I discovered that this fragment was the remaining portion of a Sprite bottle made by the Chattanooga Glass Firm (as indicated by the “C” in a circle brand) (Lockhart et al. n.d. (b)). However what may make this discover even cooler? The identify of a nationwide park embossed into the bottom!

Now I do know you’re questioning, why is Sequoia Nationwide Park on the underside of a Nineteen Sixties-Seventies Sprite bottle? Nice query! 

It seems that Coca-Cola and the Nationwide Park Service have had a protracted historical past of collaborating with each other. All of it started within the Nineteen Thirties when a Coca-Cola advert consisted of bears ingesting Coca-Cola in Yellowstone Nationwide Park (Hanna n.d.). Extra commercials quickly appeared, exhibiting nationwide park landscapes and cowboys ingesting Coca-Cola.

collection of mid-20th century coca-cola adverts showing people drinking Coca-Coal in national parks.
(photos offered by The Coca-Cola Firm, as cited in Hanna n.d.)

How does our Sequoia Nationwide Park Sprite bottle match into the image?

Properly, this bottle was a part of a promotion of the nationwide parks and nationwide monuments titled Golden Eagle (Hassett 2016; Lockhart 2011). In 1966, the U.S. authorities was selling a “golden allow”, priced at seven {dollars}, that will permit households to go to any of the nationwide parks or monuments as typically as they wished from April 1966 to March 1967 (Hassett 2016). This led to a partnership between the Nationwide Park Service and The Coca-Cola Firm to advertise this allow. Urging individuals to “See America,” the promotion included a bottle cap sweepstakes with a $33,000 grand prize (McCarthy 2019). Moreover, thirty-six totally different nationwide parks and nationwide monuments have been embossed onto the bottom of seven to ten-ounce Sprite bottles (Hassett 2016; Lockhart 2011; McCarthy 2019). The nationwide park/monument bottles have been produced by many bottle producers and distributed to the general public, offering an commercial for the Nationwide Park Service (Hassett 2016). The Golden Eagle Passport has since been discontinued and has been changed by the America the Lovely – Nationwide Parks and Federal Leisure Lands Move – Annual Move (Nationwide Park Service 2019). 

Image showing the 36 national parks authorized to appear on Sprite bottles:

Acadia; Big Bend; Everglades; Gettysburg National Military Park; Grand Canyon; Mammoth Cave; Olympic; Rocky Mountain; Saratoga National Historical Park; Sequoia; Shenandoah; Zion; Hot Springs; White Sands; Isle Royale; Great Smoky Mountains; Ft. Sumter National Monument; Shiloh National Military Park; Lincoln Memorial; Joshua Tree National Monument; Yellowstone; Glacier; Crater lake; Wind Cave; Mt. McKinley; Cumberland Gap National Historical Park; Hawaii; Petrified Forest National Monument; George Washington Carver National Monument; Death Valley National Monument; Mound City National Monument; Scotts Bluff National Monument; Platt; Grand Teton; Statue of Liberty National Monument; Chickamauga National Military Park
Photos offered by “The Refresher” journal, as cited in McCarthy 2019

Whereas the primary of those Sprite bottles have been launched in 1966, the newest date that these bottles have been created would have in all probability been 1978 (Lockhart 2011). The first labeling model of those bottles was white utilized colour labels with dimples alongside the edges (Lockhart 2011). Whereas these bottles will not be produced at the moment, bottle lovers and beachcombing teams nonetheless will accumulate these distinctive items (Hassett 2016, McCarthy 2019). 

 Sprite bottle with white applied color label
Sprite bottle with white ACL; picture from Pickling Pittsburgh 2021
 Sprite bottle with white ACL
Sprite bottle with white ACL; picture from Pickling Pittsburgh 2021

The Golden Eagle promotion wouldn’t be the final time we see collaborations between the 2 teams. For the reason that Nineteen Sixties, Coca-Cola has offered funding for a number of elements referring to nationwide parks and monuments. This consists of funding for the restoration of the Statue of Liberty, funding for customer training facilities at Yellowstone and Gettysburg Nationwide Army Parks, and funding for recycling and path applications at nationwide parks (Hanna n.d., McCarthy 2019). 

Since CAP’s identification of the Sequoia Nationwide Park Sprite bottle, two extra Golden Eagle-era Sprite bottles have been cataloged, additionally from the 2020 Service Street excavations. One has Olympic Nationwide Park on its base, whereas the opposite has Isle Royale Nationwide Park. Each have been produced by Anchor Hocking (Lockhart et al. n.d. (a)). Hopefully, future excavations on campus will produce much more of those distinctive Sprite bottles!

Olympic National Park Sprite bottle
Olympic Nationwide Park Sprite bottle
Base of Isle Royale National Park Sprite bottle
Base of Isle Royale Nationwide Park Sprite bottle
Side of Isle Royale National Park Sprite bottle with white ACL
Facet of Isle Royale Nationwide Park Sprite bottle with white ACL
 Other side of Isle Royale National Park Sprite bottle with white ACL
Different aspect of Isle Royale Nationwide Park Sprite bottle with white ACL

References 

  • Hanna, Amber
    No date. “Celebrating Practically 10 Many years of Park Partnership with Coca-Cola.” Digital doc, nationalparks.org. Out there on-line, https://www.nationalparks.org/join/weblog/celebrating-nearly-10-decades-park-partnership-coca-cola. Accessed February, 2022. 
  • Hassett, Jana
    2016 Sprite and the Nationwide Parks. Digital doc, https://frontierhomestead.org/homestead-telegraph/class/glass+bottles, accessed February, 2022. 
  • Lockhart, Invoice
    2011. Coca-Cola Bottling Firm of Alamogordo (1955-present). In Soda Bottles and Bottling at Alamogordo, New Mexico. Privately revealed. 
  • Lockhart, Invoice, Invoice Lindsey, Carol Serr, Pete Schulz, and Beau Schriever
    No date (a). “Producer’s Marks and Different Logos on Glass Containers.” Article, sha.org. Out there on-line, https://sha.org/bottle/pdffiles/ALogoTable.pdf. Accessed February, 2022.
  • Lockhart, Invoice, Invoice Lindsey, Carol Serr, Pete Schulz, and Beau Schriever
    No date (b). “Producer’s Marks and Different Logos on Glass Containers.” Article, sha.org. Out there on-line, https://sha.org/bottle/pdffiles/CLogoTable.pdf. Accessed February, 2022. 
  • McCarthy, Mary T
    2019 Sprite Delight. Digital doc, https://www.beachcombingmagazine.com/blogs/information/sprite-delight, accessed February, 2022.  
  • Nationwide Park Service
    2019 2019 Nationwide Parks & Federal Leisure Lands Move Program. Digital doc, https://www.nps.gov/amis/planyourvisit/passes.htm, accessed February, 2022.
  • Selecting Pittsburgh
    2021 Classic Sprite 7oz Inexperienced Glass Bottle Embosed Dots Coca Cola Firm Nationwide Parks Monuments. Digital doc, https://www.pickingpittsburgh.com/itemizing/508567537/vintage-sprite-7oz-green-glass-bottle, accessed February, 2022.

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