Drink Rhens Water

From an 1893 issue of American Druggist and Pharmaceutical Record (Volume 23)

The Rhens Mineral Water

The Rhens Mineral Springs, of Rhens on the Rhein, have received the highest distinction at the World’s Fair in Chicago—Medal and Diploma.  The exhibit of Rhens Mineral Water is thus described:

The Rhens Mineral Springs have displayed their products in a most distinguished manner in the German section of the Horticultural Building, in a handsome kiosk built of natural polished oak and plate glass sides, in pure and graceful renaissance style, with simple but ornamental decorations containing a pyramid of the various kinds and sizes of bottles and jugs which Rhens Water is supplied.  The labels on these original containers are alternatively printed in many languages thus prominently call attention to the vast extent of the business, which extends to nearly all civilized countries of the world.

In the panels of the base of the kiosk, the exhibitors framed numerous excellent photographic views of their establishment.  The springs with the beautiful surroundings Rhein country, the bottling rooms and their machinery hall, thus graphically illustrating the immense proportions of their business to the sightseer.

The little spaces on the ledge of the case were filled with lithographed pamphlets for free distribution, in which the valuable medicinal and dietetic properties of this excellent table water are set forth in terse language, supported by statistics, analyses, and endorsements of distinguished origin.  The exhibit was a perfect little gem.  Well-planned, perfectly prominent advertisement for Rhens water, which has so quickly achieved great popularity in the United States during the past few years.  The importations of the water to this country last year exceeded a million bottles and jugs.


1885 Weirs American patent with patent date, advertising “”DRINK “RHENS WATER.”


I love a challenge…

The other day, I was perusing eBay, and someone had for sale an interesting folding tool.  It had some patent information on the piece, but it was hard to make out–the seller explained.  And, it had a name engraved into the piece as well.

And, since it was cheap, I purchased it.

I am always up for a challenge in figuring these types of mysteries out.

I will add here, there was no corkscrew attached.

It arrived yesterday morning, and after a bit of sleuthing, researching, and some more researching, I managed to find the patent.


And, there is a twist to this mystery tool.

The tool is marked both for an 1877 patent, as well as a 1880 patent.  And, within the patent description for the 1880 patent there is an interesting paragraph, which reads as follows:

This invention relates to improvements on the patent for finger-nail cutters granted to Richard W. Stewart on the 22d day of May, 1877, No. 190,989; and it consists of a spring handle made in two separate parts that are held rigidly together at one end and capable of a lateral expansion at the opposite end, by which arrangement I am enabled to secure a folding tool in each handle—as, for instance, a finger-nail cutter and cleaner in one end, similar to the one shown in Stewart’s patent above referred to, and a button – hook, corkscrew, or other suitable pocket – tool in the other end

Wait… what…?

The patentee was suggesting that instead of a button book, a corkscrew might be the tool attached?

Well, if we have found the patent with the button hook, was the corkscrew version produced?

Do you have this little tool in your collection?

Ladies and gentleman, mystery solved.

This is the  McDonald patent of 1880 for a “Toilet Implement.”

Now, let’s find the 1880 McDonald with a corkscrew!



Early bird gets the Worm (helix)

The lovely personal trainer was headed off to California early this morning, and so it was an early wake up call, and after heading down to make coffee at 3 am.  I did a little teaching online, and grabbed the first cup, with the coffee maker having fulfilled the task at hand.

A bit later, I grabbed a second cup, and went back to my laptop; this time checking the usual sites for any interesting corkscrews.

Nothing on eBay of note, and I went back to teaching.

Sometime close to 4, I delivered a cup to the lovely, and headed back downstairs to “my office” (which is not really an office, it is simply a couch with a cup of coffee nearby) where I came upon an interesting listing on a non-eBay site, for a pair of legs with mother of pearl upper scales, with stripes on the lower.

The asking price was fair, and in short order a deal was done.

This morning, it looks like, the early bird got the worm!


Narrowing the list

Tis that time of year, when corkscrew collectors start to consider what corkscrews will make the best 6 of the year.

And, while I certainly hope that something comes my way that alters my decision entirely, I have narrowed the list to 12.

Of course, you are welcome to weigh in on this, but here are the dirty dozen.

What Six do you think should make my Best 6 of 2018?




New ICCA Member

The official word is out, Robert Leopardi is the newest member of the International Correspondence of Corkscrew Addicts!


Congratulations Robert! Welcome to the club!

We will raise a glass (or several glasses) in Lofoten!


As is tradition, you are responsible for the first couple of rounds : )