ROCK MINERAL SPRINGS COMPANY

On March 13, 1929 the Rock Mineral Springs Company was incorporated, with J. J. Huddleston of Algoma, WV, and Thomas B. Hoilman of Northfork, WV signing.(3) On May 3, 1930 the company signs a lease for the first floor, and all of the recent two story addition, of the Bailey Lodge #137 which was the Rock, WV Free Mason lodge at the time.(3) The lease was signed by Thomas B. Hoilman in his role as Secretary Treasurer of the company which logically makes J. J. Huddleston President.(3) They entered a contract for right of way to lay pipe to carry water to the plant on June 2, 1930, and secured the deed to the spring on January 8, 1932.(3) Beside most of these entries is written in "Examined and mailed Northfork Coca-Cola Bottling Company"(3) which backs up the claim by the Bailey's article that the Northfork Coca-Cola Bottling Company actually owned the plant.(1)

A November 20, 1932 article from the Bluefield Daily Telegraph on the success of the new corporation describes the creation of Rock Cliff Ginger Ale. "Chemists making a specialty of ginger ales were employed to work out a formula and perfect a ginger ale of the highest quality different from other brands of ginger ales. They recommended a brewed product made from pure ginger root blended with pure fruit flavors, which proved to be unquestionably the best formula that would produce a highly carbonated ginger ale wholesome and pleasing to the taste."(2)

The company bottled not only Rock Cliff Ginger Ale during its history, but also Orange Crush, Hires Root Beer, Kings Court Sour, Mission Orange (which was bottled in the Rock Cliff bottles if the ad is to be believed), and their own line of Rock Cliff Beverages which included flavors such as Lemon, and Grape. The brand was distributed by the other bottlers in the Northfork Coca-Cola Bottling group which included Welch, WV, Bluefield, WV, Williamson WV, and Northfork WV. On May 8, 1958 the main office of the company was moved to Bluefield, WV.(3) On March 14, 1973 The Rock Mineral Springs Company merged with the Northfork Coca-Cola Bottling Company Inc. which was now a Delaware Corporation with the latter being the survivor of the merger.





The bottling plant of the Rock Mineral Springs Company was just to the left of this photo, the place is now someoneís yard so I didnít take a photo of it, but if you look to the left of the photo you see a flat area beside the tracks. Iíve been told that this was where two side tracks stopped in front of the plant so that the soda produced there could be shipped to the other bottlers in the Northfork Bottling Group where they would be distributed.



This is a close as we are going to get to the original Rock Cliff plant. These blocks were salvaged from the building when it was torn down.









7 1/2oz Rock Cliff Ginger Ale paper label bottle dated 1929



Rock Cliff Pale Dry Ginger Ale paper label









12oz deco Rock Cliff Beverages bottle dated 1930



Rock Cliff Quality Beverages bottle carrier from the 1930's









6 1/2oz Embossed Rock Cliff bottle in the Coca-Cola Soda Water Style



Rock Cliff ad from October 18, 1939







6oz Orange Crush bottle dated 1932




From the Rock Mineral Springs Company of Rock, W. VA.



Rock Cliff Ginger Ale ad from September 23, 1936 note the last line stating it was being distribued by the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Bluefield, W. VA.









12oz Rock Cliff Beverages bottle dated 1939



Kings Court Sour ad from the Bluefield Daily Telegraph September 20, 1936.









7 1/2oz Rock Cliff Ginger Ale bottle dated 1941



Hires Root Beer ad from April 23, 1938









7 1/2oz Rock Cliff clear bottle dated 1942. This is an interesting bottle, it has the same basic layout as the 1929 with the company name on the bottom, while the acl shown above doesnít have the same embossing. Maybe they hadnít starting using acls for the Beverages line yet.



Rock Cliff Mission Orange ad from the Bluefield Daily Telegraph March 05, 1939.









24oz Rock Cliff Ginger Ale bottle dated 1949









Two Rock Cliff Ginger Ale caps, the first was taken off of the 1929 bottle at the top of the page, and the latter has the West Virginia tax stamp on it.







7 1/2oz Rock Cliff Beverages bottle dated 1952




This is an interesting piece as it was found in an old stock find with several other bottles from the late 1960ís. The bottle cap is a Golden Rock Cliff Ginger Ale, but instead of being bottled in Rock, WV this one is marked Bluefield, WV. This makes this a post move bottle cap.









10oz Rock Cliff Beverages bottle dated 1956



Rock Cliff Sparkling Water paper label









7 1/2oz Rock Cliff Ginger Ale bottle dated 1958









10oz Rock Cliff Ginger Ale bottle dated 1959



A Rock Cliff crate.



This page is only part of a much larger site. To see the rest then just click TAZEWELL-ORANGE.COM



Tazewell-Orange.com and the contents on this site are copyrighted by Joseph T. Lee III except where otherwise noted see Terms of Use.

Biblography:

(1) "Rock, West Virginia" By: James C. and Nancy H. Bailey Article

(2) Bluefield Daily Telegraph

(3) Deed books Mercer County