Poke the skull to contact us

Shuptrine Druggist Savannah Ga.

Call it odd to have the history of a medicine bottle on a poison website. but since we live here, I thought I would take some time and research one of the few non-poison bottles we are currently looking for. First, a bit of history of the family here in Savannah, via William Harding from his book “A HISTORY OF SAVANNAH AND SOUTH GEORGIA”, published in 1913.

HERMAN C. SHUPTRINE. No name is more prominent in pharmaceutical affairs in
Georgia than that of Shuptrine, the family, father and son, having been
identified with this profession for a great many years. In addition to their
prestige as good business men and exceptionally skilled druggists, the
Shuptrines are public-spirited and of unswerving principles and none is more
worthy of representation in a volume of this nature.

   Herman C. Shuptrine, prominent Savannah druggist and president of the
National Association of Retail Druggists, was born in this city, the son of the
late James Thaddeus Shuptrine, and of his wife, whose maiden name was Sarah
Newton. Of the former, whose much lamented demise occurred on August 15, 1911,
more will be told in succeeding paragraphs. Herman C. was born in 1877, and here
was reared and for the most part educated, his preliminary education being
secured in the public schools of the city, after which he matriculated in Emory
College, Georgia. Before he became of age, he entered his father's store and he
has been connected with it ever since, becoming a skillful pharmacist and
thoroughly skilled in merchandising methods. Since his father's death he has
been president of the Shuptrine Company, which had been incorporated by his
father. He is one of the prominent young business men of Savannah, aggressive
and enterprising, of the type which is aiding in the upbuilding of the city. He
is active in the many-sided life of the city and is a member of Ancient Landmark
lodge of Masons and a former member of the Savannah Cadets.

   In September, 1911, Mr. Shuptrine was elected president of the National
Association of Retail Druggists, at the thirteenth annual convention of that
body, held at Niagara Falls. He is probably the youngest druggist who has ever
been at the head of the organization, of which over 17,000 druggists are
members. This conspicuous honor came to him quite unsolicited, his election
having been brought about through the influence of his wide circle of friends in
the association, and it was a source of commendable gratification not only to
himself, but to the druggists and citizens generally of his home city, Savannah.
In 1907 he was elected a member of the Georgia board of pharmacy for a term of
five years, and in 1912, re-elected to the same office, and is a member of the
board of education of the city of Savannah. It is an eloquent commentary upon
his ability and the respect and confidence in which he is held.

   Mr. Shuptrine was married in Savannah on the 8th day of June, 1898, the young
woman to become his wife and the mistress of his household being Miss Alice
Elizabeth Vendeveer, who was born in this city. They share their attractive home
with a son and a daughter, namely: James T. and Sarah.

   James Thaddeus Shuptrine, father of the foregoing, was the second oldest
druggist in Savannah and one of the Forest city's most highly esteemed citizens.
He was a native Georgian, his life record having begun in Effingham county, on
October 15, 1850. His parents were D. C. and Caroline (Newton) Shuptrine. He
passed the early years of his life in his native county and received the
education accorded to the usual youth of his day and generation. Immediately
upon reaching manhood he became identified with the drug business and he
continued in this field of endeavor until the time of his death. It is speaking
with all due conservatism, to say that he was one of the most widely known
druggists in all the length and breadth of the state.

   He had spent the greater part of his life in this city, having taken up his
residence here at the age of nineteen years. His first business venture was in
the employ of the late J. M. Heidt, whose drug store was located on the corner
of Whitaker and Congress streets. He remained with that gentleman for six years
and following that connection took charge of the drug business of J. H. Polhill
on Abercorn street. He remained with Mr. Polhill until 1876, and was in this
association at the time of the yellow fever scourge which swept over Savannah in
that year. It is characteristic that he remained at his post throughout that
trying period.

   Mr. Shuptrine went into business for himself in 1877, his store being located
a few doors below the present location of the Shuptrine Company. He moved into
his present commodious quarters on Congress street about fifteen years ago and
in the year 1906 the business was incorporated. Mr. Shuptrine was particularly
successful in his business ventures. Scrupulously conscientious in his dealings,
kind and considerate in his private life, he won the admiration and respect of
all with whom he came in contact. He was at one time president of the Georgia
Pharmaceutical Association and for many years acted as its treasurer.

   Mr. Shuptrine laid one of the most important stones in the foundation of his
success by his marriage on February 17, 1876, to Miss Sarah Newton. Their happy
union was blessed by the birth of the following children: Mrs. Walter B.
Stillwell, Mrs. F. B. Johnston, and Herman C. Shuptrine. He also had five
grandchildren. He was essentially domestic in nature, finding his greatest
pleasure about his own fireside. His home at 308 Bolton street, West, was known
as one of the hospitable abodes of a city where hospitality has become a highly
cultivated virtue. Mr. Shuptrine was a member of Landrum Lodge of Masons and
exemplified in his own life the ideals of moral and social justice and brotherly
love for which the order stands. The Masonic body held the last ceremonial rites
and consigned all that was mortal of him to the grave. He had for many years
been a member of the First Baptist church and was a member of the board of
deacons at the time of his passing to the Great Beyond. It has been said of him
that he was recognized all over the state as a man of shrewd business sagacity,
as well as an accomplished druggist. He was distinguished for unusual physical
activity, and success was pretty sure to crown his undertakings. He was
interested in all that pertained to the unity and advancement of his profession
and retained his office of treasurer in the Georgia Pharmaceutical Association
until the June before his death, when he was forced to retire on account of
declining health. He was active in the local association of druggists up to a
few years ago. The memory and influence of this gentleman will not soon be "lost
in the community which so profited by his good citizenship.

After digging a bit into the archives available on the web, I have found there was the Druggist store, and there was Shuptrine Co. (Found in a book “The Era Druggists’ Directory. Vol 18). Both companies were on Congress St. Shuptrine Co. was 229 Congress, and Shuptrine Druggist was on 185 Congress.  This search came about after I spotted a street sign just before Thunderbolt that said “Shuptrine Ave”. I thought that perhaps the original store was here or somewhere close. But after further inspection, this is not the case.  It was probably named after the family some years ago.  It’s only 1 block long. Unfortunately, Google Maps and Mapquest road level views don’t show the sign with any detail.   Below shows the location of the stores general locations.

Click on image to enlarge

If you notice, there is an East and West Congress St. I’m sure back then there was no distinction. It also looks to continue past what the maps below show and became West of the original streets.  But there are addressees for both locations on East and West now.  So to find the original location of the stores, some more digging will have to be done in historical archives. Perhaps a trip to the Savannah History Museum or to Congress St.

Below is a fine example of the Shuptrine Druggist bottle in teal. This fine bottle resides in Tod Cagles Collection c/o Ricks Bottle Room. These bottles came in Emerald as well.

Historical Maps Of Savannah, Ga.
founded 1733

click on maps to enlarge

1818 City & Harbor Plan Map

1880 Sewerage Map

1885 City Map

Site best viewed with the Zothique font.
Get it