Western whiskey bottles and flasks could bring '$50 on up to $150,000'

An incredible selection of rare, high-end western whiskey bottles and historical flasks will be sold in an Internet and catalog auction that begins December 9 and will conclude December 18 by American Bottle Auctions.

Some of the whiskeys are the most desirable specimens known; some flasks are in never-before-seen colours.

"I don't think I've ever seen such a large group of rare and desirable whiskeys and flasks in one auction in my many years of collecting and auctioning vintage bottles," remarked Jeff Wichmann of American Bottle Auctions.

"There are easily thirty bottles in this sale that could sell for tens of thousands of dollars each. Any one of them would be the star lot in another sale."

Mr. Wichmann said he was contacted by a gentleman handling an estate that included numerous items, to include a hoard of flasks and other rare bottles that had been sitting in boxes, undisturbed, since the deceased's passing - in 1954.

"His wife just boxed everything up and brought the bottles with her wherever she went," Mr. Wichmann said. "It's a real treasure trove."

The boxes contained historical flasks that are so rare some are considered one-of-a-kinds. Many are in colours that have never been seen before. The western whiskeys, meanwhile, are just as scarce.



'There are easily thirty bottles in this sale that could sell for
tens of thousands of dollars each,' says the auction house

"Among the whiskeys are a half-dozen specimens that are the finest I've ever seen or sold," Wichmann said, "and they come from some of the most important collections out there."

Historical flasks and western whiskeys have been considered highly collectible bottles since as far back as 1900, when Edward A. Barber wrote about these interesting and beautiful pieces in his 112-page book, titled American Glassware.

Today, these American historical flasks can sell for prices ranging from $50 on up to $150,000, depending on the piece's colour, crudity, condition and rarity.

These categories can vary or coincide (example: a common flask in a rare colour).

That the specimens here date back to 1820 and even earlier - chronicling the country's emergence through embossed depictions of Benjamin Franklin, Zachary Taylor, the French General Lafayette, Pike's Peak, the railroad system and many more - promises plenty of choice for collectors.


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