Glascock Soda Machines

In January of 1929, at the annual Bottlers Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana, the Glascock Brothers Manufacturing Company of Muncie, Indiana unveiled what was to become one of the most important Coca-Cola advances in the history of the company-- the first mass produced Coke cooler.

The "Standard," as the first ice box was called, held 72 six ounce bottles with a storage area in the bottom of the cooler for three cases of Coca-Cola and one case of empties. The Standard weighed approximately 151 pounds and had outside dimensions of 31½" x 23½" x 40" high. The cost was $12.50. As with later "Glascocks," the cooler was well built and able to take considerable abuse and use as witnessed by the number that have survived. Heavy metal was used and galvanized for strength and longevity. The sign panels were built from "heavy gauge material" and embossed. Early coolers have the famous logo "Serve Yourself' above, and "Please Pay the Clerk" below the logo "Drink Coca-Cola." In later years the Standard, as well as other Glascock coolers, used the simpler red and white sign saying "Drink Coca-Cola." To refurbish the Standard and others, the Coca-Cola Company made available sign inserts for the machines that needed new sides, repainted the boxes Morocco green and painted the inside with aluminum-based paint.

In subsequent years, the Glascock Brothers introduced numerous other coolers or modifications to the existing line. One example is the Coca-Cola "Junior." The Coca-Cola Bottler magazine of February, 1930, showed a picture and description of the Junior. Known to collectors today as the single case Glascock, it was designed for situations where floor space was limited. It was offered as an alternative to the Standard and used in small stores, clubs and offices. It held 36 bottles in ice water and had room for 24 bottles in storage. As with the Standard, both coolers were built with heavy duty "500 pound" one-piece casters that were cadmium plated for use in maneuvering the machine. The original Junior listed for $7.95.

Also available in 1931 was the countertop model which is basically a  Junior without legs. It had a spigot for the draining of water and provided only ice cold Cokes since there was no storage capability.

With the introduction of the larger Standard in 1930 came the "Deluxe Model." The Deluxe Model was designed for stores that wanted a more attractive cooler, and listed for $36 in The Coca-Cola Bottler of November, 1931. The Deluxe and the Frigidaire equipped version, which initially cost $160, are extremely rare and very difficult to find.

Modifications of these machines were done in various forms. The "All Weather Model" was galvanized on the exterior for protection. The Standard became available with an enclosed base and a coin-op device was added in 1932. Wheels were also added to give yet another use to the well-designed and, by then, prolific machine.

The "Grandfather" of all existing Coke machines throughout the world, Glascocks are treasured by all collectors who own them. In many cases they are the central part of their collection, and understandably so.
  

 

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Copyright © March 12,1997

Last updated on November 19, 2000