Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum Registrar Michael Fox invited us down to take pictures of their collection of Manitou’s spring water bottles for the past century and narrated this brief, but highly informative history of water bottling in the region. Don’t miss all the great label designs, which you can see more closely by watching the slide show in full screen (click the arrows in the lower-right-hand corner).

 

3 Responses to A Brief History of Spring Water Bottling in Manitou

  1. Dave Hughes says:

    Interesting – though truncated at the end in describing what happened and what did NOT happen between 1984 when a Manitou native who had made some money in the wine business in California started up a bottling operation with his own money plus a large (as I recall $400.000 EDA grant.)

    Things seemed to be going on as a startup, while there was across the country competition by other ‘mineral springs’ companies.

    Then the owner of Manitou Springs Bottling made a stupid mistake. I, as a key person in the business revitalization of Old Colorado City, and as a member of the Manitou Springs Development Company was approached by a representaitve of the Perrier USA – the most successful and well known French bottled water company in the world. He wanted to know what I knew about the Manitou Company, its owner, and the quality of the water. Perrier had reached the US Market and was aquiring water companies which came from a variety of springs, in the US. (by 1988 they were selling 300 million bottles in the US)

    This was a GREAT opportunity for the then struggling Manitou company, and its egotistical know-it-all owner.

    I promoted the water, the historical springs, and the owner. But when they met, Manitou was NOT INTERESTED. The owner wanted to do it all, his way. Perrier went away.

    The rest is history. The Manitou Company failed, the plant was closed in the 90s, the owner went bankrupt, and all that is left are some old labeled bottles. And Manitou Springs missed the opportunity to capitalize on their springs ECONOMICALLY as part of a world-class company. All because of one headstrong native.

  2. Noel Black says:

    Thanks for the comment, Dave. Do you know who currently owns the bottling plant and/or the rights to the water? Is it the city of Manitou Springs?

  3. Mary H says:

    You sound pretty egotistical yourself there Dave. I guess not everyone would agree that it’s a good thing to sell out your local business to a multinational corporation. Even if it does mean shutting down when it doesn’t work out.

News

Emma Jacobs for NPR
May 25, 2015 | NPR · Since 2011, the Indian Ocean island of Reunion has had 16 shark attacks, seven of them fatal. It’s a sharp rise from previous years, and only Australia has had more deaths during this span.
 

NPR
May 25, 2015 | NPR · Conservatives in Tira pushed back hard at the idea of women and men running together in a public race. Someone went so far as to shoot at race organizer Haneen Radi’s car. For now, the run is off.
 

WBUR
May 25, 2015 | WBUR · In a Boston neighborhood, WBUR’s Steve Brown seeks out the story of a Marine honored by one of the many markers throughout the city that commemorates sacrifice in war.
 

Arts & Life

Courtesy of David Jay/Unknown Soldier
May 25, 2015 | NPR · Photographer David Jay says, “I take these pictures so that we can look; we can see what we’re not supposed to see. And we need to see them because we created them.”
 

Courtesy of Dutton
May 24, 2015 | NPR · “I’ve never accused myself of being manly,” Offerman says, noting his real-life persona is different from his Parks and Recreation character. His book is a set of essays about people who inspire him.
 

Associated Press
May 24, 2015 | NPR · Meara, who was married to Jerry Stiller and mom to Ben Stiller, had roles on Rhoda, Alf, Sex and the City and The King of Queens.
 

Music

Courtesy of the artist
May 24, 2015 | NPR · More than three decades after Pancho & Lefty, the country titans pair up again, this time for an album that puts eclecticism front and center.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 24, 2015 | NPR · The gospel-punk band’s self-titled debut couches its invective in feedback, guitar noise, bruising drum machines and Franklin James Fisher’s guttural howls.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 24, 2015 | NPR · On its fourth album, Dawes calls from deep inside the feedback loop of love’s aftermath. Throughout All Your Favorite Bands, singer Taylor Goldsmith takes full advantage of the dramatic possibilities.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab