Our inaugural GILLCO™ Apache Beer porcelain fired-on-glass globes is the first product launch of many intriguing forms of signs that will be exclusively offered in small batches to advertising collectors and aficionados.
For this historic 80th Anniversary Edition of the beautifully crafted products made by Gill Glass Company in the 1930’s, we have chosen a beautiful and evocative image to honor the past by bringing back to life these legendary advertising signs so that they can be admired and appreciated by future generations.
Handcrafted in extremely limited worldwide production, these exclusive Apache porcelain fired-on-glass lenses will be a cherished addition to your breweriana or advertising collection. Offered exclusively to a select few, a total of only Twenty-Five (25) of these reverse on glass (ROG) lenses were made. After this limited-edition set is sold out the artwork will be retired and never offered again, enhancing its rarity and long-term collectability.
Porcelain fired on graphics create a scintillating effect in a luminosity and brilliance of rich, warm colors that is unequaled by any other reverse on glass advertising form. GILLCO™ signs are the result of over eight separate and distinct steps to produce the beauty and permanence
All GILLCO™ reverse-on-glass (ROG) globes are sold as a set of two (2) lenses. To assure rarity, these extraordinary signs are being restricted to an extremely low production run of only Twelve (12) sets.
Limited Edition Apache Beer Reverse-on-Glass GILLCO™ globes, $350 for set of two lenses. Shipping, including insurance, will be a fixed price of $45 for one set. [Globe bodies or lamp holder not included and sold separately]. To purchase your Apache Beer GILLCO lenses please email us at: email@example.com
Order your set now before they sell out. After all of lenses are sold out this advertising sign will never be offered again.
ABOUT THE GILLCO™ ILLUMINATED SIGNS
The process by which these lenses were made faithfully follow many of the same processes that were made under the GILLCO™ line of reverse-on-glass products offered by the Gill Glass Company of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the 1930’s. With their brilliantly-lit colors, wonderfully composed graphics, and intricate designs, GILLCO™ illuminated glass advertising signs were unequaled by less expensive, generic-looking and generally less talented competitors, and is the reason why my company has revived this much admired brand in offering unique never before available illuminated glass advertising.
The creation of each GILLCO™ sign begins with hand-drawn artwork. The art is then transferred onto the rear surface of glass through a hand-pulled screen printing process, where finely ground porcelain crystals (called frit), colored with metallic oxide, is applied directly onto the surface of the glass.
After the artwork is applied the flat piece of glass is then placed into a kiln, which is basically an oven that operates at extremely high temperatures. The heat from the kiln causes the porcelain to melt, fusing it permanently onto the glass. After the glass has sufficiently cooled it is necessary to repeat this step for every additional color applied to the sign face. This Apache Beer sign features five separate colors of art, requiring your signs to be fired in a kiln five separate times, a very laborious task indeed. Because porcelain is a combination of glass and metal, not inks or paint, it renders an enduring sign that is far more permanent than any other form of other illuminated glass advertising.
After the graphics are appropriately fired, the curved shell shape and form of the globe body is crafted by placing the flat glass on to the top of a spherical mold that was made to fit inside the ovens. After being placed within the kiln, heat slowly softens the glass just enough for gravity to work at slumping it over the convex mold to form its wonderfully curved shape. The GILLCO™ brand name is permanently fired onto the face in the six o'clock position (as shown here) on every lens.
ABOUT APACHE BEER
Apache Beer was a lager-style beer introduced by the Arizona Brewing Company in Phoenix, Arizona on June 3, 1934, as the brewery's newest product. Initially available on draft only, by late August it was unveiled in bottles donning a green label with a decidedly southwestern image featuring a striking profile of an American Indian in full headdress. By the start of 1936, distribution had spread into New Mexico, Southern California, western Texas and all of Arizona.
The brewery began sponsoring a five-minute radio show on two Phoenix area radio stations called The Apache Travel Chief, as a way to promote Arizona as a tourist destination. A woman broadcaster touted the benefits of Arizona, while a theme song suggested travelers “take along some Apache Beer.” A lavishly dressed Native American dressed in a chief’s war bonnet and a blanket emblazoned with “Apache Beer” was also sent to various public events, fairs, and parades during the promotion.
Canned beer was still a novelty during this time, but was gaining favor among many consumers. In July 1936, the Arizona Brewing Company released Apache Beer in cans, one of 36 breweries that were canning their beer.
By 1942 the popular beer was rebranded Arizona Apache Beer, "The Stately Brew". The brewery stressed that the contents of the beer remained the same, that only the label was different. The next year Apache Beer would be discontinued as a brand, but would be forever regarded among breweriana collectors as one of the most beautiful and colorful beer advertising brands offered by the brewery.
The Small Batch Sign Company, Inc would like to thank Ed Sipos for receiving his permission to reproduce parts of his historical research on Apache Beer. Ed is the author on the complete history of brewing in Arizona in his book ‘Brewing Arizona: A Century of Beer in the Grand Canyon State’, which can be purchased online. Here is a link to buy his book on Amazon:
Brewing Arizona: A Century of Beer in the Grand Canyon State by Ed Sipos