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Clicquot Club

Cliquot Club clear ACL bottle

     The Clicquot Club Company (pronounced Keek-0) was established in 1881 by Henry Millis and a friend, from money he received from his father, Lansing Millis. In 1885, the little country town of Millis, Massachusetts was named after the father, Lansing, a retired railroad man of considerable means. 

     Henry Millis began his bottling business with a sparkling cider, and later expanded to other flavors, such as ginger ale, birch beer, sarsaparilla, root beer, cola, orange and other popular flavors. Within a few years, bottling of the sparkling cider was dropped, and focus went to the success of the ginger ale and other flavors.

     He decided to make his drinks the way he would make them for his personal friends and guests, from the finest, purest, costliest ingredients money could buy. He selected the highest grade of pure Jamaica ginger for his ginger ale and used pure refined Cuban cane sugar. The quality standard by which Clicquot Club Ginger Ale was made was set by Millis from the very beginning. Because of this, Clicquot Club was a stand out of quality in the field of ginger ale.

     Clicquot Club flavors quickly became local favorites which soon spread to Boston and then to Rhode Island. These were the days before telephone, motor cars and modern advertising, when news of good things was spread slowly, by word of mouth, from town to town, city to city and state to state.
Cliquot Club green bottle with paper label
Cliquot Club green ACL bottle
     Toward the end of the century (1890s), Clicquot Club came into financial difficulties which forced the company to be sold. In 1901, it was the new owners who made Clicquot Club successful through advertising and marketing strategy.

     Progress brought modernization of manufacturing, new machinery and buildings, salesmanship and advertising. But the same high standards of quality were unchanged. During the early 1900s bottle and label designs changed as well as methods of packaging, distribution, and advertising, however the quality that was the hallmark of the product was maintained.
     During the teens and twenties, Clicquot Club took advantage of every form of advertising. Tin and cardboard signs, point of purchase material, magazines, newspapers, billboards, car cards and novelty items of all types were used. 

     With the constant growth of Clicquot, the plant at Millis, Massachusetts became huge, extending more than 1/3 of a mile, with its own private siding and railroad station. But, by 1938 it proved to be inadequate to meet the demand for Clicquot Club Beverages and more manufacturing facilities were needed to meet the demand for the product that the public recognized as a "super value". 
Cliquot Club clear bottle with paper label
Cliquot Club embossed bottle
     By 1952 Clicquot Club was bottled in more than one hundred cities in the United States by a network of Clicquot Club Bottling Plants from Maine to California and from Minnesota to Florida. Clicquot Club had also expanded outside the US to South America, Nassau, Jamaica and the Philippines. 

     Declining sales, increasing competition and other company problems led to the company being sold to Cott Beverage Corporation of Connecticut in 1960. The company operated for a few years under the direction of John Cott, who continued to bottle Clicquot until 1965. Later, Cott Beverage was sold to Canada Dry and the Millis plant was closed. 

Photo descriptions:

  • First: Clicquot Club "Quality Since 1881" Beverages. 7 oz. G-2579 Duraglas '57 Millis Mass
  • Second: Clicquot Club Pale Dry Ginger Ale. 16oz. Green w/paper label. Millis Mass USA
  • Third: Clicquot Club "Quality Since 1881" Beverages. 7oz. Green. Missis Mass
  • Fourth Clicquot Club Imitation Grape Soda. 32 oz. Green w/paper label. Duraglas
  • Fifth: Clicquot Club Flavors 12oz. "Since 1881" Clear glass embossed. L-954 '56
  • Below, Left: Magazine Ad from The Ladies Home Journal, August 1920
  • Below, Right: Early Paper Label bottle.
  • Below, Middle: Clicquot Club Eskimo trade card, front and back.
  • Below, Bottom: Assorted Clicquot Club crowncaps.
Ad from Ladies Home Journal Aug 1920

Front and back of The Clicquot Club "Eskimos" trade card

Cliquot Club crowncaps

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