Cool Off at Morphy’s Refreshing June 7-8 Soda Pop & Antique Advertising Auction in Las Vegas

Sensational Hires Root Beer ceramic soda fountain set manufactured by Villeroy & Boch, likely a sole survivor, is expected to sell for $40,000$80,000

LAS VEGAS, May 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Soda fountain memorabilia is pure American nostalgia, harkening back to a time when the local soda shop or drug store was the place where everyone went to socialize over light refreshment. Beverage brands were fiercely competitive marketers, providing lavish ceramic syrup dispensers and vibrantly colorful advertising signage to establishments where their products were sold. Those promotional items are now the objects of their own competition, at high-profile soda pop and antique advertising auctions like the one Morphy’s will conduct on June 7-8 at their Las Vegas gallery.

The 1,329-lot sale includes not only beverage-related items but also signage, display items and fountain accessories for various ice cream brands. In addition, there are advertising clocks, radios, a Seeburg jukebox, vending machines, seltzer bottles and more.

The top-estimated lot is a Hires Root Beer set comprising a ceramic dispenser, platter and three mugs, all adorned with images of the brand’s mascot known as the “Ugly Kid.” Made by the esteemed German firm Villeroy & Boch, it is quite possibly the only set of its type known to exist. Estimate: $40,000$80,000

Another coveted Hires piece is the rare and stunning double-sided cardboard string fan-pull sign emblazoned with the slogan “Hires – The Only Relief For A Thirsty World.” It is designed as a circular replica of the world with anthropomorphic features, drinking from a mug of root beer held by the “Ugly Kid.” Estimate: $3,000$10,000

An important and all-but-impossible sign to find is the early, single-sided embossed-tin Hires sign with the message “Hurrah! For Hires Rootbeer!” with the image of the “Ugly Kid.” Exhibiting strong condition overall, it is possibly the only surviving example of its type. Estimate: $3,000$6,000

It wouldn’t be a soda pop sale without a major representation of the king of soft drinks, Coca-Cola. Morphy’s will offer collectors some outside-the-box choices, like an incredible 1960s Coca-Cola Roll-O-Vend mobile sales trailer with a nicely-outfitted interior soda fountain and a collapsible top for easy towing. Estimate: $15,000$25,000. Also, made circa-1896 by the Wheeling Pottery Co. (W. Va.), a Coca-Cola ceramic syrup dispenser is bright, thoroughly clean and devoid of staining. It is described by Morphy’s as a rare example of the first style of dispenser Coca-Cola ever used. Estimate: $8,000$16,000

Two non-Coca-Cola syrup dispensers that highlight the sale would easily qualify as artworks: an ornate turn-of-the-20th-century dispenser made by American Soda Fountain Co., Philadelphia, with six original glass fountain flavor dispensers, $8,000$16,000; and a rare circa-1920s ceramic Fan-Taz syrup dispenser replicating a large stitched baseball, $4,000$8,000.

Even advanced soda-pop advertising collectors might still be searching for an elusive double-sided tin 7Up “elbow flange” sign. Made in the 1950s, this rare sign features the 7Up bottle graphic and the message “We Proudly Serve 7Up.” In super condition, its pre-sale estimate is $6,000$12,000. Another great piece is a circa-1940s Orange Crush single-sided embossed tin sign with the brand’s iconic “Crushy” mascot, $3,000$6,000.

Morphy’s June 7-8, 2024 Soda Pop & Advertising Auction will be held at the company’s Las Vegas gallery located at 4520 Arville St., #1, Las Vegas, NV 89103. All forms of remote bidding will be available, including absentee, by phone, or live online through Morphy Live or LiveAuctioneers. Questions: call 877-968-8880, email
. View the full catalog online at

Media Contact:
Dan Morphy
877-968-8880, email

SOURCE Morphy Auctions