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Gallery of Mineral, Seltzer & Gout Waters courtesy of 'The 18th Century Material Culture Resource Centre'

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Published by Colin Savage, 2018-06-13 09:00:35

Mineral, Seltzer & Gout Waters

Gallery of Mineral, Seltzer & Gout Waters courtesy of 'The 18th Century Material Culture Resource Centre'

18th Century Material Culture
Mineral, Seltzer, & Gout Waters

“SELTER” & “SELTZER” Water

“SELTER WATER” was a naturally occurring mineral water that came from the
underground springs of Niederselters, Germany. All the rage in Europe during the
18th century, this popular water was cherished for its mineral content and metallic trace
elements that it extracted from rocks located deep below the earth’s surface. As early as
1728, it was packaged in stoneware bottles that were produced by German potters
known as Krugbacker (“pot bakers”). It was then shipped all over the world for
consumption, including destinations to England and America.
Germany was not the only nation to produce mineral waters. In his account of the
therapeutic benefits of mineral water that came from the springs of Gloucester,
England, physician John Hemming wrote in 1789 that those who drank the water felt
“many cures were accomplished”. Not only did it remedy digestive orders, but it also
laid claim to help heart palpitations, fainting, nervous disorders, fever, rheumatism,
“female complaints” and last, but certainly not least, flatulence. Whether or not these
claims were legitimate is uncertain.

“SELTER” & “SELTZER” Water

In 1767, chemist Joseph Priestley discovered a
method of creating an artificially fizzy water by
infusing it with carbon dioxide gas. Suspending a
bowl of water over a beer vat in Leeds, England,
the carbonated water that formed had a very
pleasant taste and aroma which resulted in it
being offered to Priestley’s relationships as a
refreshing beverage.
In 1772, Joseph Priestley published “Impregnating
Water with Fixed Air...” in which he described
the process of creating soda water. He believed
that his “Happiest Discovery” was beneficial in
the prevention of scurvy.

“DIRECTIONS FOR IMPREGNATING WATER WITH FIXED AIR;... Pyrmont Water”
by Joseph Priestly 1772
(Science & Society)

The Chemist Joseph Priestley
by Henry Fuseli 1783

(Dr. William’s Library, London)

The Chemist Joseph Priestley
by James Millar 1789

(Harris Manchester College, University of Oxford)

“SELTER” & “SELTZER” Water

In 1783, Johann Jacob Schweppe developed a process to manufacture artificially
carbonated mineral water based on the principles and processes developed by Joseph
Priestley. In 1783, he founded the Schweppes Company located in Geneva. In 1792, he
moved his soda water operations to London. His namesake still graces the shelves of
today.
With the advent of artificially carbonated waters, “Selter” waters eventually became
known as “Seltzer” waters.

Salt Glazed Stoneware
Mineral / Selter Bottles

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1591 - 1800
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1591 - 1800
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1591 - 1800
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1701 - 1800
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1750
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1591 - 1714
(Museum of London)

German Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
Spring Marked with a Cobalt Blue “P” c. 1591 - 1714
(Museum of London)

Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral Water / Selter Bottle from Westerwald
c. 1770

(Skerry & Hood)

Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral / Seltzer Bottles
Recovered from the Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck off Delaware, Likely the British Merchant Ship, Severn c. 1774
(The Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck: Identification, Analysis and Historical Context” by Bridget Christine McVae, St. Mary’s College)

Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral / Seltzer Bottles
Recovered from the Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck off Delaware, Likely the British Merchant Ship, Severn c. 1774
(The Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck: Identification, Analysis and Historical Context” by Bridget Christine McVae, St. Mary’s College)

Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral / Seltzer Bottles
Recovered from the Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck off Delaware, Likely the British Merchant Ship, Severn c. 1774
(The Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck: Identification, Analysis and Historical Context” by Bridget Christine McVae, St. Mary’s College)

Salt Glazed Stoneware Mineral / Seltzer Bottle
Recovered from the Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck off Delaware, Likely the British Merchant Ship, Severn c. 1774
(The Roosevelt Inlet Shipwreck: Identification, Analysis and Historical Context” by Bridget Christine McVae, St. Mary’s College)

Glass
Mineral Water Bottles

Glass Mineral Water Bottle
18th Century

(Robert Hunter)

Glass Mineral Water Marked "Carried by Major Clift in the Revolutionary War."
18th Century

(Private Collection)

Glass Mineral Water Bottle Covered in Canvas & Leather
18th Century

(ex Ivor Noel Hume Collection - Photo Courtesy Robert Hunter)

“A Midnight Modern Conversation”
by William Hogarth 1732

(Yale Center for British Art)

Detail: “A Midnight Modern Conversation”
by William Hogarth 1732

(Yale Center for British Art)

Detail: “A Midnight Modern Conversation”
by William Hogarth 1732

(Yale Center for British Art)

German Piermont & Pyrmont Springs Water Bottle Shards
Found in the Colonial Chesapeake, Virginia, Region - First Half of the 18th Century
(From “Glass in Colonial Wiliamsburg’s Archeological Collections” by Ivor Noel Home, Courtesy Robert Hunter)

German Pyrmont Spring Water Bottle Found in the Kleinduetchland Section of German Settlers, New York City
c. 1730 - 1740
(Tim Strong)

German Pyrmont Spring Water Bottle Found in the Kleinduetchland Section of German Settlers, New York City
c. 1730 - 1740
(Tim Strong)

German Pyrmont Springs Water Bottles
Similar to those Imported into the Colonial Chesapeake, Virginia, Region in the First Half of the 18th Century - Early 18th Century

(Photo Courtesy Robert Hunter)

Gout
Water Bottles

English Salt Glazed Stoneware Godstone “Iron Pear Tree” Gout Water Bottle
c. 1752

(Bonhams)

English Salt Glazed Stoneware Godstone “Iron Pear Tree” Gout Water Bottle
c. 1752

(Bonhams)

English Salt Glazed Stoneware Godstone “Iron Pear Tree” Gout Water Bottle
Mid 18th Century

(Leland Little Auctions)

English Salt Glazed Stoneware Godstone “Iron Pear Tree” Gout Water Bottle
Mid 18th Century

(Leland Little Auctions)

Acknowledgements

The material contained within these slideshows is presented for educational purposes only. The
18th Century Material Culture Resource Center does not personally own any of the items
depicted herein and is indebted to the countless museums, libraries, and private collectors who
willingly share their collections with the public through the internet. Every attempt has been
made to credit these organizations and individuals for their contributions as best as possible.

If there is a question you have regarding a particular item featured within a presentation, please
contact the 18th Century Material Culture Resource Center and we will try to answer your
inquiry as best as possible. If for any reason you feel there is any item that should not be
presented here, or if there is an error in any listing, or if you know the source for any item whose
credit is unknown, please inform us and we will make sure your concern is addressed as soon as
possible.

Thank you!

- The 18th Century Material Culture Resource Center


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