Sunday, June 03, 2001

Now and Then

Newport bottler sparkled for decades

By Gene Franzen
Enquirer Contributor

([name of photographer] photo)
| ZOOM |
        NEWPORT — Lemon-lime, cream soda, sarsaparilla, root beer and Vichy water are just a few of the soft drinks that were bottled and sold by Newport Mineral Water Co.

        Woodberry and Bushmiller Mineral Water Co. was formed in 1887 and it began its bottling operation in a three-story brick building at Sixth and Orchard streets. In 1912, the company changed its name to Newport Mineral Water Co.

        For the next 44 years, Newport Mineral Water Co. was Campbell County's No. 1 soft drink supplier. The drink came in small, 6.5-ounce green or white bottles that lined the shelves of groceries and markets.

        In the early 1950s, the soft drink industry underwent a huge change. National brands such as Pepsi and Coca-Cola set up local distributors and introduced a 12-ounce bottle. Newport Mineral Water Co. tried to compete, introducing two new 12-ounce drinks, “Mr. Newport” and “Thin,” but the competition proved to be too tough. In 1955, Newport Mineral Water Co. locked its doors.

        The long, narrow building still stands across the street from the James Wallace Costigan American Legion building. Rhonda Sue's Ceramics, an apartment and a recording company now occupy the building.

       Now and Then, a look at historic places in Northern Kentucky, appears Sundays in The Kentucky Enquirer. To suggest a feature, call 578-5555.


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