Acquisition No.: 1990-01
Title: Cigar Box; "Golden's Blue Ribbon."
Item History:

In 1906, there were four licensed cigar manufacturers in Bonneauville, PA. There was at least one unlicensed maker (See I. V. Noel Day Book, Acq. no. 2013-25). The four were:

A. J. Golden, Tax no. 2464

Emery L. Golden, Tax no. 2280,

F. H. Smith, Tax No. 2161

A. L. Wagaman, Tax no. 42.

(Source; "Tobacco Trade Directory" 1906).

The Golden's Cigar manufactory was the most successful business to ever operate in Bonneauville, PA. From the beginning to well beyond the mid-20th Century the Golden's manufactured the renowned Blue Ribbon Cigar brand. The family produced many other brands as well. Among them was Bokay-Grande, ("B" for Bonneauville, i. e. Bonneauville - Okay), Bunney Boys, ("Bunney" for Bonneauville), Penn Rose, Two Homes, Grande, Newcomers (from which a law suit against the Golden's ensued), Two Friends, and a sweetened and flavored cigar made for slowly chewing instead of smoking. Tu-Tu-Chu was the brand name the Goldens used for their chewing cigars.

The Golden's first produced famous Blue Ribbon Cigars in quantity at 1 W. Hanover Street in Bonneauville. They quickly outgrew the building. A new structure was constructed at 1 E. Hanover Street. It was built very early in the 20th Century. The new structure housed a general store on the lower floor and a cigar production facility upstairs. The structure is currently the home of Weaver's Store (2014).

Cigar smoking retained its popularity well beyond the first half of the 20th Century. The Golden's business thrived. Blue Ribbon Cigars were "licensed up and down the East Coast." A new production factory was constructed about two blocks east on Hanover Street in Bonneauville. Several modern new homes were also constructed on the site and it was there that the Golden families moved. Many townsfolk found work at the new facility. (Info per Frederick and Robert Golden interviews-2002).

The following are quotes from "The Gettysburg Companion," April/May, 2012, "When Cigar Makers Were King."

"E.L.Golden was turning out around three million cigars per year at his two factories in Bonneauville and Two Taverns.

"Golden was the co-inventor, with his brother, of the Blue Ribbon cigar,"

The following is according to a mid 20th Century Gettysburg Times article:

"Golden was in business from 1895 until he produced his last cigar on March 5, 1943."

"The once popular industry began to fade as required manufacturer health warnings, taxes, government's anti-tobacco stance and other roadblocks surfaced."

Note: Factory numbers and tax numbers vary on Golden's Blue Ribbon Cigar boxes and on some of their other brands, due to the fact that their products were often licensed to other manufacturers. A fair number of old cigar boxes survive since they made convenient storage boxes before the advent of the plastics Age.

Ref. Acq. No. 2003-10 - A letter describing the payment of $12000.00 in bond purchases for one antique Golden's Blue Ribbon Cigar. Per the letter; "Doubtless, this is one of the oldest and most expensive cigars ever sold in the United States."

Note regarding cigar manufacturing in Bonneauvillle, PA. Per the History and Directory Adams County, 1880: "A. Ackerman produced cigars in Bonneauville in 1880.

Location: Case I
Acq. Date: 1990
Acquired from: Yingling's Auction, Gettysburg, PA
Price ($): 5.00
Type: accession
Curator: ckrc