Rees Vest Fulcrum Corkscrew

As mentioned the other day, there are two known versions of the Rees patent.  The long handled one, that will soon be arriving on the island, and the Rees Vest Fulcrum Corkscrew.


I don’t have this piece, but if anyone does have a Rees Vest Fulcrum Corkscrew, I would happily make an offer–trade or buy.

In 1907, Rees was definitely making an effort to get his corkscrew to market.

In both newspapers and magazines from that timeframe, the following ad appears:


There were other advertisements that were a bit more concise, but added the tagline, “It’s in the Fulcrum.”


Rees’s Pieces

In 2015, I blogged about a Rees patent corkscrew, having found an 1908 article that pictured the piece.

The 1908 Pittsburgh Daily Post article explained:

Everyone will undoubtedly welcome the successful effort of a Philadelphia inventor to improve the old-fashioned corkscrew which has been in use for ages and still retains its regular form. Attempts to pull a cork with the ordinary cork-


screw in many cases ends disastrously to the person making the attempt, especially when the cork fits tightly in the neck of the bottle and refuses to be removed until the bottle has been placed between the knee and the corkscrew tugged at for several minutes. Then it invariably comes out with a sudden jerk, throwing contents in all directions. Notice how simply and easily even the most tightly wedged cork can be withdrawn with the corkpuller shown in the accompanying illustration. After the corkscrew proper has been inserted in the cork, the upright arm forming a wedge is placed on the neck of the bottle. Using the handle as a lever, the most obstinate cork can be readily extracted without endangering the clothes of the operator. When not in use the corkscrew and wedge can be folded within the outer end of the handle, which is hollowed out to form a housing.

Clearly this is the Rees patent.  And, despite its ability to remove, “the most obstinate cork…,” the Rees, and there are two versions of it, simply doesn’t turn up.

Tommy lucked out in a road trip several years ago, and found a Rees for the smoking price of 8 dollars–this one making his best 6 for that year.


And, of course, there was one that turned up on the auction.

Again, given the scarcity, it brought a substantial number–quite a bit more than Tommy’s steal.


Okay, so where are you going with this Josef?

Well, a couple of days ago, several auction lots appeared on a non-eBay auction site.  And, there were multiple lots that contained corkscrews.  There were nice things in each, but largely common stuff.

In one lot, there was a power cone.  And, I kept an eye on that one.


After seeing that lot, I continued to peruse the other listings in the auction.

And, then something caught my eye.


At the base of the box… Is that?


It is a Rees patent


I did place a couple of bids on the Power Cone lot.  Given I was outbid immediately, I figured someone wanted it more than I, and I should just let it go.

Still, I decided to hold off bidding on the Rees lot until the closing minutes, hoping that it would slip through.

On the online bidding, it did.

I was the high bidder, but all of the auction lots were next to be taken to a live auction; one that was not being broadcast online.  No jumping into the fray, I just had to hope for the best, and also hope that Barry wasn’t nearby, as  the auction house was only a couple hours away from him in Florida.

The auction ended Saturday, but no email came through to confirm that I was the winner.   So, I sent the auctioneer an email, and received a response later that afternoon.

Confirmations of winning bids will be sent on Monday…


Ever hopeful, as of 11:45 I still hadn’t received a confirmation.  And, I was pretty sure this one got away.

Until, I got a message from the lovely saying that there ware a voicemail from an auctioneer.  I checked voicemail.


Yes! I did win the lot with the Rees!!!

This surely will make the best 6 of the year.  Better pictures of the Rees after it arrives and is cleaned up a bit.


I was offered this celluloid figural corkscrew the other day, and he bears a resemblance to Bonzo the Dog.




He may not be Bonzo,


but it is also a figural celluloid dog that I can’t remember seeing before.

What do you think?  Bonzo, or not Bonzo?

Better pictures will be posted when it arrives.




Winkelmeyer Brewing

This afternoon, I hopped on eBay for a moment, and there sat a Clough wire double helix corkscrew with brewery advertising with a buy it now of $17.50 or best offer option.

I weighed my options for a moment, but knowing that I couldn’t remember seeing that particular marking before, I opted not to make an offer, but instead, clicked the buy it now option.


Marked JUL. WINKELMEYER BREW’G. ASSN., word has already come through that only a few have been found.


And, after a brief exchange of messages, it has been placed in the Tipped Worm Johnny pile for a future deal.

On that note…  I was contacted by a brewery collector looking for the same corkscrew but with a marking for “M. SCHORR BREWERY WATERLOO, ILLS.”

If you have one, feel free to drop me a line.

Kinsey Confusion (Five Years Later)

Five years later after the 1948 article in The New Yorker,  Dr. Alfred C. Kinsey was set to release the follow up book, entitled Sex and the American Female.   And, in 1953, the Kinsey Distilling Corporation still benefitting from customers assumptions that there was a relation between the two enterprises, placed advertisements in various newspapers around the country in an attempt to limit the amount of labels, bottle tops, or simple requests that a copy of the new book, be went to consumers of Kinsey Whiskey or Kinsey Gin.

The following appeared in the Chicago Tribune:






We’re KINSEY, the Distiller…

We’re not Dr. Kinsey, the Author-Scientist…

Nor are we the publisher of his famous books.  TO OUR MANY FRIENDS:  Please don’t misunderstand this public notice.  We are delighted that many of you are acquainted with Kinsey Whiskey and Kinsey Gin.  We always enjoying hearing from you.

But it gets mighty embarrassing when you confuse us with Dr. Alfred C. Kinsey, author of “Sexual behavior on the Human Male” and the about-to-be published Sexual behavior in the Female”.

You see, we have absolutely no connection whatsoever with Dr. Kinsey or with the publication of his books.

The late J.G. Kinsey, founder of our distillery back in 1892, came from an old Pennsylvania Dutch family, long famous in distilling history.  He wasn’t even distantly related to Dr. Kinsey.

Dr Kinsey’s books are published by the W.B. Saunders Company, also a Philadelphia concern.  And, we have no connection with the Saunders Company.

So please don’t write us for copies of Dr. Kinsey’s book, as so man of you did five years ago.  The new Kinsey book sells for $8.00 at the book shoes and you can readily understand that we could not afford to send you a copy in return for a label or bottle top of Kinsey Whiskey or Kinsey Gin.  Nor could we do so legally, since the Government frowns on sex in the promotion of alcoholic beverage.

So, if you would like a copy of Dr. Kinsey’s new book, you will have to buy it from your book store or from the publisher.  That is what we’re doing friends.

Our best wishes to you all and to Dr. Kinsey, too.  We hope his new book is a great success.  We hope, too, that all you good people will let us go about our business of distilling and distributing Kinsey Whiskey and Kinsey Gin.



The hunt continues to find linkages between Syroco and Kinsey.  and hopefully in a couple of weeks the truth will reveal itself.  I will be headed to Syracuse and Syracuse University to look through their Syroco materials collection.

If anything comes to light, I will update you all here.


ICCA & CCCC Annual General Meetings in Maine 2018!

As of yesterday, invitations and registration forms were sent out for the 2018 Annual General Meetings of both the ICCA and the CCCC.

Sue and I are super excited about hosting the meetings in Maine, and we look forward to seeing you there.


You should have received the forms via email (ICCA), or in the Quarterly Worme (CCCC), but the forms and additional information, are also available on .


We will continue to update the website with relevant information as we get closer to the meeting dates.

And, we hope to see you at our place for corkscrews, food, wine, and corkscrews!!!


See you in Maine!!!!!!!!