A Pickle in a Pickle

The bottle shown below – a somewhat mid-size (seven inches) “Cathedral” pickle bottle turned up on eBay recently. What sets it apart from most others of its kind is the contents – a single whole pickle which I would call a dill. Contrast it from the much smaller gherkin pickles.

Open pontil 7″ pickle bottle with contents

The cork and wax seal seem old although the photo is not the sharpest but it suddenly makes me wonder – just what was the pickle content of such pickle bottles? I don’t recall ever seeing a labeled example of the earlier fancy pattern pieces. This one has an open pontil so it dates to the mid-19th century.

Might the contents be original? Or perhaps added at a later date? What do you think?

My only point of reference is later examples of smaller height (7 to 12 inches) of which I have seen with labels. The ones that come to mind, including the one I just found on eBay (seen below) refer to contents that are gherkins. This is easier to accept since such containers could hold a dozen or more.

Early 20th century pickle bottle with label

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