Lawrence H. Wentzell Sr’s glass milk bottle collection is one that many would envy. The Massachusetts man collected almost 2,500 milk bottles, starting with bottles from his family’s dairy, S. H. Wentzell & Sons Pioneer Dairy. Mr. Wentzell’s family is searching for a collector or a museum interested in taking the collection. Click here for the entire story.
For years the stories were enough family history to satisfy Mr. Wentzell. But then, around the time he retired from one of his two jobs in the early 1990s, he thought it might be nice to find an actual tangible piece of that history and he began a search for milk bottles from the family’s dairy. He found some and learned that collecting milk bottles could become a passion-filled hobby.
He expanded his collection to include other bottles from the city and, before long, the area. And as is wont to happen with collectors of things, eventually he expanded again and started searching out bottles from around Massachusetts.
With the man who most loved the bottles gone, the Wentzell family has pondered what to do with the 2,500 or so specimens he’d lovingly collected. They checked with local historical societies and museums, and a collector did buy a few that he badly wanted. Still, it’s too large a collection for any one place to take.
“If we could keep some part of the collection together,” Mrs. Wentzell said, “I think he would want that. We don’t have to sell them. I just want to do the right thing.”
Mrs. Wentzell said she knows her husband had talked with a fellow collector about what would happen to their bottles should something happen to him, but she’s not sure they ever decided anything specific. Friends are helping her look for appropriate places to donate some of the collection, places where the bottles will be seen and appreciated, but it has not been easy.
Source: Kim Ring, Telegram & Gazette
Photo Credit: T&G Staff Photos/Steve Lanava