Bottle Attributes Soda & Mineral Water Bottle Colors

The color of a bottle has a lot to say about a bottle's age.

The primary colors shown below are general representations. The actual colors of bottles and hues of colors very greatly.

Blue Color Blue colors, circ: 1845-1905, (color agents: cobalt, copper)
This is the most sought after color by soda and beer collectors. The colors range from a very light or powder blue to deep violet or purple blues. The deeper and more purple the better. The blue color was popular in early soda and mineral water bottles, but this popularity waned starting about 1860. The blue color greatly enhances the price of a bottle.
Green Color Green colors, circ: 1823-1920, (color agents: iron, copper, chromium)
Green soda and mineral water bottles represent perhaps the greatest range of colors. They range from yellow green and blue green, to olive green. The colors can be very light to almost black. As time progressed, the greens became more refined and by 1880 were either a yellow or Kelley green. After 1875 green was rarely used for soda and mineral water bottles. In most applications were a dark color was desired, brown glass was used instead.
Brown Color Amber or Brown colors, circ: 1844-1920, (color agents: carbon, nickel)
Brown is most often called amber by collectors and hues range from yellow to almost black. The brown color never became popular for use in soda and mineral water bottles.  There are less than ten different pontiled soda and mineral water bottles in this pure coloration, but many more with olive overtones.
Amethyst Color Amethyst colors, circ: 1846-1865, (color agents: copper, gold, selenium)
The holy grail color for bottle collectors! Collectors commonly call this color puce, but it is truly shades of red or amethyst. Most of these bottles date between 1846 and 1848. However, there were a few produced during the 1850s and early 1860s. There are less than twenty American soda and beer bottles in this coloration and they are rare and pricey.
Aqua Color Aqua colors, circ: 1835-1920, (color agent, iron)
By far the most common color in soda and mineral water bottles. Most likely 85% of all pre-crown bottles are this color. Aqua colors can have green or blue tints, which is caused by small amounts of iron or other metals in the sand. This color was rarely used for soda bottles before 1848, but some examples exist. Aqua colors were more popular in the Midwest than in the Eastern part of the country in pontiled soda and mineral water bottles.
Clear Color Flint or Clear colors, circ: 1860-1920, (color agent, lead, manganese, selenium)
Clear glass bottles almost always have a tint of pink, aqua, or gray. A clarifying agent was added to the glass to make it clear. Clear glass displays a bottle's contents best, but early clear glass was not as durable as glass in other colors. Therefore, it is often damaged with dings or cracks. Most clear pre-crown soda and mineral water bottles will turn a lovely shade of pink, called sun-colored amethyst, with a prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light.