On May 1, 1889, Asa Candler published a full-page advertisement in The Atlanta Journal, proclaiming his wholesale and retail drug business as "sole proprietors of
By 1892, Mr. Candler's flair for merchandising had boosted sales of
The trademark "
A firm believer in advertising, Mr. Candler expanded on Dr. Pemberton's marketing efforts, distributing thousands of coupons for a complimentary glass of
The business continued to grow, and in 1894, the first syrup manufacturing plant outside Atlanta was opened in Dallas, Texas. Others were opened in Chicago, Illinois, and Los Angeles, California, the following year.
In 1895, three years after The
As demand for
While Mr. Candler's efforts focused on boosting soda fountain sales, another concept was being developed that would spread the enjoyment of
In 1894, in Vicksburg, Mississippi, Joseph A. Biedenharn was so impressed by the growing demand for
Large-scale bottling was made possible in 1899, when Benjamin F. Thomas and Joseph B. Whitehead of Chattanooga, Tennessee, secured from Mr. Candler the exclusive rights to bottle and sell
The first bottling plant under the new contract was opened in Chattanooga in 1899, the second in Atlanta the following year. By then, realizing they could not raise enough capital to build bottling operations nationwide, Messrs. Thomas, Whitehead and Lupton decided to seek outside capital. They contracted with competent individuals to establish
Over the next 20 years, the number of plants grew from two to more than 1,000 -- 95 percent of them locally owned and operated. As the business grew, the development of high-speed bottling machinery and increasingly efficient transportation enabled bottlers to serve more customers with more products. Today, the
Protecting a Valuable Name
The bottlers of
Early advertising warned of the perils of popularity. "Demand the genuine" and "Accept no substitutes" reminded consumers to settle for nothing less than the real thing.
The never-ending battle against substitution was the major force behind the evolution of the distinctive hobble-skirt bottle. A variety of straight-sided containers was used through 1915, but as soft-drink competition intensified, so did imitation.
The now-familiar shape was granted registration as a trademark by the U.S. Patent Office in 1977, an honor accorded only a handful of other packages. The bottle thus joined the trademarks "
More on Journey
The Doctor is In: How Dr. J Helped Make
- 90 Years, 90 Athletes: Inside Coke’s Storied Partnership With the Olympic Games
- Rhyme With Reason: Meet the Wieden+Kennedy Wordsmith Behind Coke’s Poetic Big Game Ad
- New York Couple Celebrates Wedding With Coca-Cola Flair
- ‘A Coke For Everyone’: Brand Celebrates the ‘Wonder of Us’ in Inclusive Big Game Ad