"Pure as Sunlight" and "Ice Cold Sunshine", Coca-Cola, one of the most recognized bottles in the world.
Coca-Cola bottles are a bucket list item for many beachcombing enthusiasts and have been filling the cabinets of collectors for years. Created in 1886 by John S Pemberton, Coca-Cola was first served as a fountain drink at Jacobs Pharmacy. Thirteen years later Coca-Cola started being bottled and marketed as an on the go drink, and that is where the glass bottle had its beginnings in becoming one of the most coveted items to be found on shores all over the world.
The first Coca-Cola bottle was a straight sided bottle and included a metal stopper and had the seafoam color we all are familiar with. In 1906 + 1907 Coke changed its bottle to a less popular amber style and then changed it again in 1915 to the now famous contour we all know. There have only been a few bottle shape and color variations, with the seafoam bottle being the most recognizable. They wanted a bottle that would be recognized for what it was, even if it was shattered on the ground and boy did they get it right!
Because of its long-standing history and popularity, Coca-Cola bottles can be found in waters across the globe. From creeks in the hollers of West Virginia to the churning shores of the Great Lakes to the vast bodies of waters of our oceans, Coca-Cola glass can be found in the most remote areas. It is the world's most popular soft drink and for many years, before we knew better, lots of garbage was disposed of in our waters and thus making the old glass bottles treasures just waiting to be found.
I get so excited seeing that familiar color and embossed logo, it could be a perfect frosty or shanky bottle...it always goes in my bag. I am a frosty girl through and through and typically only pick up those pieces of glass that are worn smooth with the tossing and churning of the water. I make an exception for Coca-Cola. My favorite Coca-Cola find was last December. It was a fully intact bottle, slightly tumbled, with a Tampa stamp on the bottom. I unexpectedly found it while shelling on the Gulf Coast and was more excited about that bottle than anything else I have ever found. Beach glass or seaglass is not too common on the Gulf of Florida so that is why I think it was so special for me. Bucket list item checked.
In 1978 Coca-Cola started bottling in plastic. Plastic became mainstream and more affordable as a packaging option making it become one of the worst modern inventions for our environment. Plastic is not something beachcombers like finding on our shores and believe me lots of those bottles and much more end up on them because of it. Packing out what you pack in, recycling, picking up trash, and using reusable containers are all things we can do to help in a small way.