H. W. Carter & Co.

Aerated Water, Ginger Beer and Cordial Manufacturers


Henry Williams Carter went into partnership in 1872, with John Russel Grace, when the two of them bought out the Bristol branch of the old firm of Withy & Co. John had been a partner in the previous firm and had worked at the bottling plant in Wilder Street, Bristol: "BRISTOL SODA WATER WORKS. WILDER STREET, MAY, 1872. H. W. CARTER and J. R. GRACE respectfully announce to their Friends and the Public they have purchased the BRISTOL business of WITHY & CO., LIMITED, and shall continue the Manufacture of FIRST-CLASS MINERAL WATERS solely at the above address, under the name of CARTER & CO. Both partners have had many years' experience in the Trade, and hope by producing an article that cannot be surpassed, at a moderate price, to receive a share of public support. Note the address - CARTER & CO., WILDER STREET, BRISTOL.

Carter1

Henry Williams Carter was born in Stapleton in 1839, the son of another Henry Williams Carter (deceased at time of marriage), He married Julia Henrietta May at St. Mark, Regent's Park, London, on 17 Jan. 1871. That year the couple were living at Napier Road, Redland, Bristol. Carter is quite elusive, however, his history before his marriage is difficult to ascertain, he may have even been related to Captain Henry (Harry) Carter, the notorious smuggler and Methodist preacher. Henry's obituary in the Western Daily Press, 4 Feb. 1913, suggests he spent his earlier years in education.  Julia, however, is a little easier to trace, she was living in Tewkesbury, Worcestershire in 1861 with her parents Enoch May and Elizabeth, her father Enoch was a Chemist in Tewkesbury High Street, Enoch died later that year, aged 57. Julia was born in Tewkesbury early in 1841.

In 1871, Shortly after his marriage to Julia, Henry appears in the Bristol census at Napier Road, Redland as a Manufacturer of Soda Water. By 1881 he had two daughters, Lilian (8) and Beatrice (3). The family are living at Springhill House, Spring Hill, St. James, Bristol, and Henry is still listed as a Mineral Water Manufacturer.

In 1872 he bought Withy & Co. with John R. Grace as a partner, but by 1881 John had left, becoming a commercial traveller in the flour trade.

In 1882 the company ceased bottling a rival proprietary product "Zoedone", which was a kind of tonic water, in favour of their own product Euzest. They had been involved previously in a court case where the owners of the brand had tried to get an injunction on the manufacture of Euzest, saying it was an exact clone of Zoedone.

 Bristol Mercury - Saturday 4 October 1890: "73,000 Messina Lemons have been used this season in Carter & Co's Works". Soon after the factory was taken over the company claimed it was the largest manufactory in the West of England.

The company also manufactured "Big Wheel Fruit Juices" which were small bottles containing sherbert-like lemonade crystals. These bottle's were originally marked "Gill & Co., 45 Wilder Street, Bristol".

The partnership between Henry Williams Carter and Ernest Matravers Wright (of Bathampton) was dissolved on 22 Sep. 1898 in favour of Carter carrying on the business. The business became incorporated as Carter & Co. Limited on 27th of that month with Wright as a director, but by 1901 he had retired from the business. He had been with the company since at least 1891, he was previously in banking and with a family wine merchants.

Henry Williams Carter retired from the company in 1904 due to deteriorating health, he died at his home, 14 Alexandra Road, Clifton, on 3 Feb. 1913 leaving an estate of 12,149, 17s, 8d.

Carter & Co. were one of the companies, together with Brooke & Prudencio, who formed Bristol Industries Ltd. in 1920.

Julia H. Carter died at 14 Alexandra Road, Clifton, on 7 May 1921.

The company carried on until it was taken over by the Beecham Group in 1955. You can read about its later exploits here including the invention of their most famous product, "Ribena".

Stone Ginger Beer Bottles
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Printed:  TRADE (Anchor & Fishes in Shield) MARK / CARTER'S / GENUINE / BREWED / GINGER BEER / BRISTOL / KEEP BOTTLE CORK UPWARDS.
Potter: Price, Bristol (Left, honey glaze).
Price-Powell, Bristol (Right, light brown glaze).

Stone Ginger Beer Bottles
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Printed:  TRADE (Anchor & Fishes in Shield) MARK / CARTER'S / GENUINE / BREWED / GINGER BEER / BRISTOL / KEEP BOTTLE CORK UPWARDS.
Potter: Price, Bristol (Left, 2 tone glaze).
Powell, Bristol (Right, 2 tone glaze).

Stone Ginger Beer Bottles
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Printed:  TRADE (Anchor & Fishes-inverted in Shield) MARK / CARTER'S / GENUINE / BREWED / GINGER BEER.
Potter: Powell, Bristol (2 examples both 2 tone glaze).

Stone Ginger Beer Bottle
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Printed:   (Anchor & Fishes in Shield) / CARTER'S / GENUINE / BREWED / GINGER BEER / BRISTOL 

Potter: Price, 4, Bristol (honey glaze).
Crown cap.

10oz Codd's Bottles
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / LTD/ BRISTOL (left) or CARTER'S / BRISTOL (right, with iridescence).


Glassworks: Dan Rylands Ld. 4 Sole Makers, Barnsley (on base).

6oz Codd's Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / LTD/ BRISTOL.


Glassworks: Dan Rylands Ld. 4 Sole Makers, Barnsley (on base).

6oz Codd's Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / LTD (front) Royal Coat of Arms -DIEU ET MON DROIT- with date 1831-1900 below (reverse).


Glassworks: Cannington Shaw Ld, Makers, St. Helens.

6oz Codd's Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S (front) / Royal Coat of Arms -DIEU ET MON DROIT (reverse).



Glassworks: Cannington Shaw Ld, Makers, St. Helens.

10oz Codd's Premier Patent Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTERS / BRISTOL




Glassworks: ?
Photo courtesy Aled Rees.

10oz Hamilton Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S & Co. / BRISTOL / GENUINE SUPERIOR / AERATED WATERS.



Glassworks: Unmarked.

6oz Hamilton Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S  / BRISTOL



Glassworks: Unmarked.

10oz Round Bottomed Cylinder
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Embossed (around circle): REGISTERED / *CARTER & Co LATE G. WITHY & Co*/ BRISTOL / TRADE MARK



Glassworks: Unmarked.

Full and Split size Dumpy Seltzer Bottles
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Embossed lengthwise:   ESTABLISHED 1831 / CARTER & Co. / BRISTOL

Amber Glass.

Glassworks: Number on base likely Cannington Shaw Ld,

10oz Flat Bottomed Cylinder
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / BRISTOL



Glassworks: Number on base, likely Cannington Shaw Ld, Makers, St. Helens.

Tall "wine-bottle" shape bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   (on left) H. W. CARTER & Co. / BRISTOL (front) / GOLD MEDALS / 1893 (two medal images) 1899 / AWARDED (reverse).
(on right) H. W. CARTER & Co. / BRISTOL  (no medals on reverse).  Note: There is also a version with leaves embossed on the shoulder which probably contained lime cordial.
Glassworks: W. G. B. Co. (left)
C. S. & Co. Ld. 2235 (Cannington Shaw, right).

10oz and Split size Flat Bottomed Skittles
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Embossed to shoulder:   CARTER'S / BRISTOL

Split size crown-cap, 10oz blob top.
Glassworks: C. S. & Co. Ld. (Cannington Shaw Ld, Makers, St. Helens.- large);
P. & R. B. (Powell & Ricketts, Bristol - small).

Large Gallon Carboy
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Etched:   PROPERTY OF / H. W. CARTER / & Co. LTD. / BRISTOL / MUST BE RETURNED / FOR CREDIT.


Glassworks: 11806 / U. C. B.

Miniature Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / BRISTOL



Glassworks: not marked.

Small Burst Lip Fruit Crystal Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   GILL & Co. / 45 WILDER ST. / BRISTOL / BIG WHEEL / FRUIT JUICES



Glassworks: unmarked.

Small Formed Lip & Burst Lip Fruit Crystal Bottle
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Embossed lengthwise:   CARTER'S / BRISTOL / BIG WHEEL / FRUIT JUICES (burst lip-right);

(formed lip on left) CARTER'S / BRISTOL (front) BIG WHEEL / FRUIT JUICES (reverse)
Glassworks: unmarked.

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