A Part of New England Soda Pop History Preserved
If you’re a lover of Moxie Soda, you may enjoy a little history about the famous Moxie bottle stand. It is a 32-foot high by 10-foot wide Moxie Bottle replica that was originally designed as a trade show booth from which to distribute samples of Moxie soda. It first appeared at the NE Food Fair in Boston in 1907. The replica was made of oak, spruce and NE pinewood and was constructed so that it could be disassembled and moved from one trade show to the next. It had a label, bottle cap, doors and windows from which Moxie samples were handed out.
In 1910 the Moxie Bottle Stand was brought to Manchester, NH and placed near the roller skating rink in Pine Island Amusement Park. The Manchester Traction, Light and Power Company had created the park at the end of their trolley line. The amusement park was built beside a pond, and among the many park attractions, there were also cottages for summer renters. For a nickel, a customer at the park could buy a cold glass of Moxie, go inside the “bottle”, climb to the window at the top and look out toward Goffstown at Mount Uncanoonuc. To get down, the customer slid down the slide on the exterior of the bottle. As an added attraction, people were able to keep their Moxie glass as a souvenir.
Nearly 10 years later, the Moxie Company decided to put an end to Moxie Bottle Stands. But it wasn’t the end for the Moxie Bottle in Manchester. In 1919 it was purchased by a local couple, Mr. and Mrs. Louis Messier. They had the bottle dismantled and moved across a frozen Pine Island Pond. Once on the other side, it was renovated to serve as an addition to their small home. It remained there until 1989 when it was dismantled and taken to Maine by members of the New England Moxie Congress.
Dr. Augustin Thompson, the creator of Moxie in 1876, was originally from Union, Maine. His home state has always claimed Moxie as theirs, and is fanatic about Moxie and preserving its history. In 2000, the Matthews Museum of Maine Heritage in Union, Maine purchased the bottle. They restored it and put it on display in the museum along with what they claim is the largest Moxie memorabilia display in the US. It’s a fitting tribute to the longest-lasting mass marketed soft drink.
Thank-you very much to Randy Ludacer for the use of the Moxie house image at Roadside Packaging.