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Dr. Hoofland's German Bitters Bottle

C.M. Jackson was among the many 19th-century distributors peddling bitters to a receptive U.S. market. Based out of Philadelphia, Jackson began to sell Dr. Hoofland’s German Bitters around 1850. The product had been introduced much earlier, its formula developed by a German doctor. According to the 1890 Hoofland’s Almanac, the product was “the happy result of intelligent research, coupled with the extensive practice of Dr. Christoph Wilhelm Hueflin of Gena, Germany.”

As noted on the embossed bottles, Hoofland’s bitters were marketed as a remedy for “Dyspepsia” and “Liver Complaint.” An ad proclaiming the benefits of Hoofland’s put it simply: “It is for him [the potential customer] to say whether he will continue to endure a living death or to put himself in a position to render life enjoyable.”  By 1863, the product was sold to Charles Evans and R.S. Jones, and a decade later, the proprietors of Hoofland’s German Bitters were Johnson, Holloway and Company of Philadelphia.

The quantity recovered from the SS Republic, a mere 11 bottles, pales in contrast to some of the other bitters brands found at the wreck site.

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