Historical information

This glass milk bottle was manufactured and used mid to late 1900's (1834 Victorian dairy industry was founded) until the time that a cheaper container was invented(plastic bottles and polyethylene plastic lined cardboard cartons). In 1909 the supply of pure bottled milk was required for babies to overcome infant mortality due to unhygienic milk sources (unclean containers and unpasteurized milk). Due to the volume of milk being processed and hand milking could not keep up with demand, dairy farms introduced milking machines in the late 1930's. The great increases in dairy herds from the average of 18 cows per heard in 1950's to 142 cows per herd in 1996 required milk tankers to pick up the regions milk supply. This bottle was so constructed to be easily moved within the milk processing plants from the delivery vats/holding tanks to the final corking/sealing of the bottles for eventual distribution. From 1958 the milk bottle slowly became phased out of production. At this point in time Melbourne was drawing 160,000 bottles per week from the two major glass bottle works companies, e.g. Melbourne Glass Bottle Works Co.


Victoria was the major state supplier of cows milk in the history of Australian milk production from the early 1800's. The Kiewa Valley and its region was a major contributor to meet that demand. Each bottle was "branded" during manufacturing to show the contents (pasteurized milk) and where it originated from (region and supplier). This method of recycling the bottles back to specific dairy farms was a good control method but an uneconomical "on cost" which was replaced by the "throw away" less costly plastic and cardboard containers. Kiewa Valley dairy herds had marked bottles bearing "90/9", "6/18", "6/33", "6/35" and "6/36" Found under house at 1 Beauty Ave., Mt Beauty.

Physical description

This heavy gauged glass milk bottle has a rim and a distinctive head at the top. This head has been manufactured to facilitate the movement of the bottle along the milk production line. The method of pouring milk into the bottle has been part of the "production line". This bottle has a one pint capacity and is made from "light green" coloured glass(a protection against light penetration). There are other milk bottles that do not have a "green" tint in them. This thick glass bottle to contain milk required its thickness because of the extensive handling before final consumption. Milk was delivered by the "milk man" direct to the homes of consumers. During this period delivery to homes in cities and towns was made initially by horse and cart and later by truck.

Inscriptions & markings

On the bottom end of this bottle a circle within it "6/36" and next to this "MILK" and opposite "ONE PINT". Below this "THIS BOTTLE BELONGS TO MILK BOTTLE RECOVERY LTD" and below this "AND CANNOT BE USED WITHOUT WRITTEN PERMISSION" on the base "M" underneath this "15"