United Bottling Co., P F O’Neill, 508 Greenwich St., New York

 

The United Bottling Co. / P. F. O’Neill was in business for over 40 years, always located within lower Manhattan.

Paul F O’Neill (waters) was first listed in the 1887 NYC General Directory at 185 Franklin St. but the September 1, 1883 “City Record” included him on a list of First Assembly District members as Paul F. O’Neill, mineral waters, with the 185 Franklin address. So it looks like the business extends back at least that far.  In the 1891 NYC General Directory, O’Neill’s address changed to 508 Greenwich St. where the business remained until at least 1925.

O’Neill began using the United Bottling Co. as a company name as early as 1890. The 1890 Copartnership and Corporation Directory listed the business as: United Bottling Co. (Paul F. O’Neill, propr.) 185 Franklin.

The Annual Report on Factory Inspections in New York State – 1898 listed the business with 5 male employees.

The 1917-1918 NYC Directory of Directors listed O’Neill as a Director for both the Bottlers and Manufacturers Association and the Bottlers and Manufacturers Collecting and Distributing Co.

By 1933, Paul F. O’Neil was listed at 74 Varick with the occupation of real estate.

Today 508 Greenwich is a four-story walk-up with a bar/restaurant at street level and an ornate exterior fire escape.

“Street Easy says it was built in 1900 but O’Neill was using it as his address continuously since 1891. I assume that the 1900 date was probably the construction date of an addition. It must have housed the business.

The bottle I found is a tooled blob (8 oz) embossed with the 508 Greenwich Street address. Although O’Neil moved to 508 Greenwich in 1891, I’ve seen 2 different variants of this bottle on the Internet and this appears to be the newer version, so I’d say it’s early 1900’s.

Although the business extended into the mid-1920’s, I’ve not yet seen a tooled crown finish or machine made bottle associated with this business.