||Another example would be the
German Baptist Conference glasses of 1897, 1899, and 1905.
Shown here is the 1897 glass.
But I realized only a few days ago
that there is a third set, the three Burrichter Bros. shot glasses
from Galena, Illinois. Before discussing these glasses, a little
history and geography lesson is in order.
Galena is in the northwestern part of Illinois, in Jo Daviess County.
It has only 3,600 residents in the state, but it is the second-most
visited area in Illinois, second only to Chicago.
|There are several reasons
for the region’s popularity. Although the Ice Age glaciers
flattened most of Illinois, they missed the northwestern part of
the state. The result is breathtaking rolling hills.
The town is named for galena, which is a lead ore. Native
Americans mined the lead, as did the early French.
Because of these lead deposits,
Galena was settled very early in the state’s history, even though its
location was not close to Illinois’ other settlers, who generally
migrated from the southeast. In the 1840s, at the height of the town’s
prosperity, Galena’s population was larger than Chicago’s. But as the
use of lead declined, so did the town.
||But the beautiful buildings
that were built by Galena’s first settlers remain. Eighty-five
percent of the town is listed in the National Register of
Historic Places. People come from all over to look at these
buildings, shop in the stores, and stay in the "bed and
|Finally, Galena is the
hometown of the famous Civil War general and our 18th president,
Ulysses S. Grant.
But enough about the city. What about the glasses?
was a wholesale liquor firm in Galena that was established by John
Burrichter, J. H. Hellman, and G. Sander in 1844. A 1904 history of Jo
Daviess County indicates that by the time this book was written, a
son, Frank Joseph Burrichter, had taken over the family business.
As shown here, there are at least three glasses in this series.
All three are identical, except for the number of years in the whiskey
(70) (71) (73)
YEARS IN THE
I was able to buy the "70 years" glass on eBay recently for only
$26.51. (Remarkably, though, there were seven bids for this
nondescript glass.) Assuming that the business started in 1844, this
glass dates from 1914.
We have glasses for 70 years, 71 years, and 73 years. What about the
"72 years" glass? Does it even exist? It does not appear in any of the
pre-pro databases. If it is out there somewhere, this "text-only"
glass might be as rare as that "DESPRES & CO." Chicago glass that I
shamelessly lusted after in a
recent "SOTW" article that I wrote. I
doubt, though, that it would sell for as much money!
Besides the "72 years" glass, are there any other Burrichter Bros.
glasses, perhaps stored somewhere in a Galena warehouse? Did the
business fold after 73 years, or in 1917, just three years prior to
the start of Prohibition? Regardless of the answers to these
questions, it seems clear that these shots are a fine set of "series"
glasses that, though "text only," are certainly worthy of collecting.