The Marin History Museum will open a new exhibit at the historic Boyd Gate House in downtown San Rafael on Feb. 8. “Unbottled” will explore the histories of Marin bottling industries — dairies, brewing and pharmacies — through the themes of bottled nourishment, health and entertainment.
The exhibit will feature selections from the museum’s vast glass bottle collection and a few special loans from local people and businesses, along with original advertising, artifacts, pottery and paintings. The exhibit will also touch upon the popularity of antique bottles and collecting through stories.
Larkspur resident Dennis Gilardi, who has his own collection of rare and historic bottles, will be loaning a rare blue-glass seltzer bottle from the Blue Rock Inn (now Left Bank Restaurant), one of Marin earliest hotels.
“In a funny twist of fate, I found out that it was Dennis who donated a good amount of the museum’s current collection back in the ’80s before proper donor records were kept. So, not only will the Blue Rock bottle be attributed to Dennis, but likely some of the other bottles will be originally from Dennis, too,” said Heather Powell, curator of collections at the Marin History Museum.
Also featured in the exhibit will be a piece of Arequipa pottery, an arts and crafts style pottery produced in Marin from 1911 until 1918. Arequipa pottery was produced as part of the therapy process for Bay Area women recovering from tuberculosis.
For more information, visit marinhistory.org.