Syphon, Soda

A Pall Mall shaped 30 ounce pink coloured glass soda syphon with a clear glass internal tube. " C.O STEFFENSEN / NEW PLYMOUTH " is etched on the glass in a ornamental border surrounding the interlinked letters " C O S " . "BRITISH SYPHON Co LTD/LONDON "is etched in small lettering below this. The plated metal top is marked " C.O STEFFENSEN / NEW PLYMOUTH " . " BRITISH SYPHON / MFGCo LTD / LONDON " is marked on the other side of the top.
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This pink glass Pall Mall shaped soda syphon with a silver-plated top and sand-blasted design was produced by Carl Olaf Steffensen, who began trading in Eliot Street, New Plymouth in 1902. By 1908 he was bottling a variety of products, including ginger beer, vinegar and horehound beer. Steffensen died in 1944, but his business continued operating until Western Bottling Company Ltd bought the factory in 1965 and closed it down. The syphon is thought to date from the 1920s onwards. This bottle was part of a collection amassed by Brian Bridgeman, a Taranaki butcher and metal worker. Over a thirty-year collecting career Bridgeman became something of a legend for his comprehensive collection of New Plymouth-related bottles, many of which he dug up himself. Collectors around the country would come calling for advice, to trade or to glimpse parts of his collection. Bridgeman died in 1991 much of his treasured New Plymouth collection was placed on loan at Taranaki Museum. His family was keen to keep the 228 bottles, many of which were rare and irreplaceable, together and in May 2011 Puke Ariki purchased the collection. For more information see Bottled History: The Brian Bridgeman Bottle Collection in Moffat, A. Flashback: Tales and Treasures of Taranaki. Wellington, Huia, 2012, pp.169-174. 
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