I recall a barber who was appointed by the Bright's Wine Co. to offer refunds for all Bright's wine bottles brought to his shop.
The going rates for the bottles were two cents for a 26 oz. bottle and five cents for a one-gallon jug provided they were reasonably clean.
This offer sent a number of us kids out to hunt for the bottles and make ourselves a real fortune.
At the foot of Lindsay Street North and Colborne Street East was a large wooded area that was called "the jungle."
It was here where many less than fortunate fellows went to consume their bottles of joy juice.
Naturally, we headed into this jungle and were fortunate enough to find various numbers of wine bottles. Placing them into a potato sack we would head off to the barber ship to cash them in.
Some of the other sources were bottles could be located were in boat houses that lined the shores of the Scugog River
Behind the Northern Casket factory was an enclosed loading dock where someone had pried a couple of boards loose making it easy to slip through the hole and sit and swallow their liquid gold.
As I was walking up Kent Street with the bag of bottles in my hand, I met up with "Chippy" Duke, "Skinny" Macdonald and "Trooper" Thompson who were oft times referred to as the Three Musketeers.
"What 'ya got in the bag?" asked one of the men.
"Wine bottles," I replied. "I cash them in for two cents each."
"Next time you're near my place just go into the back shed; you'll find a few there you can have that some of my friends left behind," said Trooper.
As I recall it, I think Thompson's address was 50 King St. So after a few days had passed, I ventured over to the house, burlap sack in hand, and knocked on the door. There was no answer, but I do recall him telling me to just go into the shed and help myself.
As I entered the shed I got the shock of my life! What a cache of empties greeted me. I ran home, got my wagon, placed a big box in it and proceeded to clear the shed. I don't remember how many trips I made from Trooper's home to the barber shop but between quart bottles and gallon jugs I collected close to three dollars!
"Where are you getting all the bottles from?" I was asked.
Much like a newspaper reporter, I never revealed the source of my goodies. (LDP)