New in the collection: Gastonia milk bottle


One-quart milk bottle with the words Sunrise Dairy, Gastonia, N.C. in red letters.

“As with cotton, the price of milk was volatile. ‘Milk wars’ were common, as distributors continuously undercut one another….

“According to the Gaston Gazette, a milk war was occurring in Shelby in 1972, when Ab Wolfe of Sunrise Dairy in Gastonia said of a proposed regulation, ‘It discriminates against the little distributor. The big boys are going to eat us up.’ ”

— From “Cleveland County Agriculture” (2016)

“Sunrise Dairy, Gastonia, N.C., ceased operation in June after 46 years as a dairy processor. Management is liquidating and disposing of equipment.”

— From “Sunrise Shutters” in Ice Cream Field and Ice Cream Trade Journal (1974)

More on North Carolina’s once prominent dairy industry, as told through its bottle lids here and here.

A second side of one-quart milk bottle with the words "Please Return Bottles Daily," and an image of a man carrying a large milk bottle on his back.