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Earl R. Dean

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**Life of Earl R. Dean:**
– Born on March 19, 1890 in Terre Haute, IN
– Died on January 8, 1972
– Designed the famous contour Coca-Cola bottle
– Participated in the national competition initiated by Harold Hirsch in 1914
– Created the contour bottle prototype inspired by a cocoa pod picture

**Innovative Design Process:**
Harold Hirsch’s plan aimed for a distinctive, recognizable bottle
– Root Glass Company of Terre Haute, Indiana won the national competition
– Earl R. Dean’s pencil sketch of a cocoa pod led to the prototype
– Initial prototype was deemed unstable on conveyor belts due to its design
– Dean modified the design to equalize the middle and bottom diameters

– Inventory: Earl R. Dean Collection, Vigo County Public Library
– Anniversary of an Icon by The Coca-Cola Company
– Dean’s prototype patented in Samuelson’s name in 1915
– Books by Pendergrast and Lindstrom highlight Dean’s contribution
– Biography details available on Vigo County Public Library website

**Further Reading:**
– Norman L. Dean’s book “The Man Behind the Bottle
– Provides history and origin of the classic contour Coca-Cola bottle
– Published by Xlibris Corporation with ISBN: 978-1-4500-5404-1

**External Links:**
– Wikimedia Commons for media related to Coca-Cola
– offers facts about the creation of Coca-Cola’s Contour bottle
– Article mentions Earl R. Dean as an artist from the United States
– Readers can contribute to expanding the article on Wikipedia.

Earl R. Dean (Wikipedia)

Earl R. Dean (March 19, 1890 – January 8, 1972) designed the famous contour Coca-Cola bottle.

Earl R. Dean
BornMarch 19, 1890
Terre Haute, IN
DiedJanuary 8, 1972
The 1915 contour bottle prototype designed by Earl R. Dean.
US Design Patent for a Bottle or Similar Article USD48160 (Coca-Cola bottle)

In 1914, Harold Hirsch, a lawyer for the Coca-Cola Company, came up with a plan to launch a national competition in which bottle manufactures across the country would be asked to design a distinctive bottle – a bottle which a person could recognize even if they felt it in the dark, and so shaped that, even if broken, a person could tell at a glance what it was.

The bottle manufacturer that won this competition was the Root Glass Company of Terre Haute, Indiana. Inspired by a picture of a cocoa pod which was found in an encyclopedia at the Emeline Fairbanks Memorial Library, Earl R. Dean made a pencil sketch of the pod. From this sketch, Dean designed the contour bottle prototype. The prototype never made it to production since its middle diameter was larger than its base. According to Dean, this would make it unstable on the conveyor belts. Dean then equalized the middle and bottom diameters and the Contour Coca-Cola Bottle was born.

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