The Empire Bottling Works was established in June, 1905. Nathan Goldberg was named as one of the four original directors and apparently the one actively involved in the management of the business. A Russian immigrant, prior to establishing the bottling business Goldberg lived on Second Street in Manhattan where he listed his occupation as “hotel keeper” in the 1900 census records.
The company’s incorporation notice was published in the June 10, 1905 edition of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.
The 1913/1914 Copartnership and Corporation Directory of Brooklyn and Queens continued to associate Nathan Goldberg with the business listing him as president of the company. His son Samuel, a lawyer by trade was named vice president.
The business was located in a small portion of Rockaway Beach called Hammels for most if not all of their history.
Initially, a September 5, 1906 story in the Times Union mentioned that the Empire Bottling Works was located at 23 and 25 South Hammel Avenue (later named Beach 85th Street), which they went on to say was also the dwelling of Nathan Goldberg.
Later directories and tax certificates between 1906 and 1927 listed the business on Division Avenue (later named Beach 82nd Street) near Boulevard. At times they also used a Boulevard address (both 497 and 522 were listed at various times).
Their 1905 incorporation notice only mentioned mineral waters but the company certainly bottled beer as well. This is confirmed by a labeled bottle that recently appeared for sale on the internet. The label named the Empire Bottling Works of Rockaway Beach as the local bottler for Koehler & Co.s Fidelio Beer. Information on Koehler & Co.and Fidelio Beer is available in more detail within another post on this site. Fidelio Brewery, New York
By 1928 the business was listed at 75-18 Rockaway Beach Boulevard which was technically just outside of Hammels. As far as I can tell Goldberg’s wife Yetta was listed as a widow in the 1930 census records so its quite possible that the business ended around that time. The company was not listed in the 1940 Queens phone book. (I don’t have access to any directory information from the 1930’s.)
The bottle I found is 27 ounces and machine made.