Gunther Premium Dry Can (1952-1955)
This is a local favorite, a Gunther can used from about 1952 until 1955. I am still trying to nail down the date when Gunther switched labels and began using this can but 1952 is pretty close based on the ads that I have found in newspapers and by the date code on the can. Certainly this label was in use during the summer of 1952. It was replaced in 1955 by the oval label, the so-called "racetrack can." See my October 2006 COM for specifics.
Gunther Premium Dry
Gunther used as a selling point that its beer was "dry." That is, more of the sugar is removed and it is fermented longer and is thus lighter with less bitter aftertaste. Dry beers became increasingly popular after Prohibition ended and even more so after World War II. Numerous beers advertised that they were "dry." New York's Rheingold's slogan was "My beer is Rheingold, the dry beer." (Click to see 1947 ad) Gunther Brewing bragged that their beer was the original dry beer.
In 1953 they had a promotion where you got a packet of sugar with each six-pack of cans or bottles of Gunther Beer. The sugar represented the amount that had been removed from six containers of beer (72 oz's) by their "slow-brewing" process. The brewery claimed that their process removed about the equalivent of 27 lumps of sugar in a case of beer. This wasn't the only promotion that gave away a sample of something that had been removed from the beer you bought. See my June 2007 COM, a gold Fehr's can, for a less appetizing example involving "gurk."
1953 Gunther ad, click to see larger.
This label only lasted about 4 years at most, but Gunther was Baltimore's largest selling brand at the time so this can is readily available.
The Premium Dry Can
This is a very common can and found on most dumping trips in the Maryland-DC-Delaware-Virginia area. The label's paint also weathers very well so it's not uncommon to find these cans in great condition buried along with other cans that show a great deal more rust.
A Gunther "in ground" in 2005.
A Gunther is uncovered in 2008, over 50 years after being buried.
I found some Gunthers on my first dumping trip when I restarted my collection in 2001. I was very excited as I hadn't dug a can with a clean label since I went dumping in the early 1980s. I still like finding them as I really like the label. I don't want to dig a LOT of them as they're so common, but still, it's an attractive can.
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Brewery research on Rustycans.com has been aided by Carlson's Brewery Research.