Huntington Coca-Cola Co.


This photo of the Huntington Coca-Cola plant was taken in 1940.


HUNTINGTON -- In 1886, Atlanta pharmacist John Pemberton originated Coca-Cola as a patent medicine,
allegedly good for just about anything that ailed you headaches, stomach problems, whatever. It proved a hit with
early customers but Pemberton lacked the cash to capitalize on that popularity. Two years later, he sold the
 formula to a businessman by the name of Asa G. Candler, who invested in advertising
and began peddling Pemperton's creation in a larger area.

But what really made Coca-Cola a huge success was a happy accident. By mistake,
a drugstore clerk mixed it with carbonated water rather than the tap water the stores
had been using. The result was such a pleasing drink that Candler immediately
stopped selling it as a medicine and began promoting it as a refreshing
beverage. The rest, as they say, is history.

Originally, Coca-Cola and the many rival soft drinks it inspired was available only as a fountain drink.
But before long enterprising businesses began bottling it so customers could take it home to enjoy.
One such business was the Huntington Coca-Cola Bottling Co.

Huntington once was home to as many as a half-dozen soft drink bottling plants, but without question
the Coca-Cola plant was the city's biggest and busiest. Its building in the 400 block of 3rd Avenue was
 immediately recognizable by the large stone Coca-Cola logos engraved on its front and side.

The Huntington Coca-Cola franchise was established by Julius Broh in the early 1900s and later headed
by his son, Harry "Pat" Broh. Between them, the father and son operated the bottling plant for more
than 80 years. In 1984 an out-of-town concern bought the Huntington franchise
and almost immediately shut down the bottling operation.

Today, all brands of soft drinks enjoyed by Huntington area customers
are bottled or canned elsewhere and shipped here.

Huntington's old Coca-Cola plant building is still standing and has had various tenants over the years.
The building's big stone Coca-Cola logos are still there, highly visible reminders of the era
when the plant turned out thousands of bottles of the popular soft drink every day.


Note:  This Article and picture appeared in the Herald-Dispatch Newspaper on Dec. 29 , 2014


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