Quabaug Pure Spring Water Label
This fascinating label from the Quabaug Spring Water Company of North Brookfield, Massachusetts measures 3.5” Wide x 2” High and comes with quite a story. Back in the 1800s a wealthy businessman, T.C. Bates, decided to bottle the spring water from Quabaug Spring. He also spearheaded the installation of water pipes and a town reservoir in North Brookfield, which is about 20 miles from Worcester, Massachusetts. In those days it was common for shallow wells to become contaminated and the people got sick. T.C. sold his bottled water from a horse-drawn wagon throughout town. To expand he hired a New York advertising company who designed the labeling and featured King Phillip in the labels and advertising, absent from this label. Bates continued to run the company until his death in 1912.
I found an interesting passage in the Annual report of the State Board of Health of Massachusetts from 1901 describing Quabaug Spring. “Situated in a small valley about 800 feet south of Bates Street. The water-shed is uninhabited except that there are two houses and a barn situated at a considerable distance from the spring which may drain towards it. Water is collected in a stone reservoir 10 feet square and 8 feet deep, situated in a bottling house. Water is pumped from the spring into a small wooden tank from which the bottles in which the water is distributed are filled. Sold in Worcester and Springfield.” Quabaug, by the way, means Red Water.
I also found an old advertising booklet (see scans) for Quabaug Spring Water indicating that “It will improve your digestion, purify your blood, stimulate in many ways your whole system, and prove healthful, wholesome and life-giving.” What more can be said.
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