The history of the so-called “Hoop Skirt” bottle goes back more than a hundred years. In the early days, soda pop was chilled in a barrel filled with ice and water. Neither inks nor glues of the day would withstand the moisture.
The owners of Coca-Cola put out a request to the nation’s glass and jar and bottle manufacturers for a unique bottle design. A firm in Indiana developed the “hoop skirt” design. When grasping the bottle in the darkness of water and ice, it was easily distinguished. Excellent early industrial design, eh?
The business deal was good too.
Coca-Cola offered the Indiana bottler the exclusive right to manufacture the bottles. Coke agreed to pay one cent per bottle. The bottler turned them down, suggesting a better deal. Coke could make the bottles and pay the bottler a nickel a case.