Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Bottling Works

Photo copyright: Claudia East, 2009

Viewed above is an image of the current Bottling Works Mall along Main Street in Yreka. This structure has played an important role in the life of Yrekans, and has been known as the "bottling works" for nearly 75 years. It all started when...

By the spring of 1935 the Yreka Bottling Works had already been in operation for 37 years and owned by Fred Meamber ~ the Siskiyou News ran an article about the bottling works as they moved into their "new" quarters at 412 South Main Street, Yreka (aka, Hwy. 99). Prior to the bottling plant moving to this location the building was occupied by the McNair garage.

The news article explained that the building not only housed the Coca-Cola bottling plant, but areas for all of their beverage business. They constructed a wine room near the front of the building, in the back of the building a new cold storage room was built for beer with a capacity to handle three carloads of keg beer at a time! At the writing in 1935 the Bottling Works were the exclusive distributors in Siskiyou County for Matevista wines, Beringer Brothers Wines, Buffalo, Acme, Golden Glow and Rainier beers; Coca-Cola, Hires Root Beer, Orange Crush, and 7-Up!

It was originally around 1898-1900 that Fred Meamber and his brother George purchased the Yreka Bottling Works. The plant moved in 1912 into quarters near the train depot until the present move (1935). A photo of the building near the depot in 1913 can be found in the 1976 Siskiyou Pioneer on page 63, published by the Siskiyou County Historical Society. (Reprints of this issue may still be available at the Siskiyou County Museum.)

Today one can roam through the shops in the "mall" or lunch at Nature's Kitchen and enjoy viewing the building that still has a feel similar to 1935. Parking is located in the rear just across Yreka Creek. It is another great way to enjoy our wonderful history!

*Information gleaned from The Siskiyou News, April 4, 1935, page 1 and several issues of the Siskiyou Pioneer. Copyright, Claudia East, 2009.