Howel’s Root Beer
There isn’t much out there about Howel’s Root Beer, but from what I’ve been able to determine, it was one of the earlier products made and sold by a man by the name of Clayton J. Howell. It was available in bottles from about the early 1920s through to the late 1940s.
Prior to the sale of Howel’s Root Beer, Mr. Howell had introduced the syrup for Howel’s Orange-Julep in 1916, which later was known as Ward’s Orange Crush. Neil Ward was Howel’s partner and a chemist – together the two men incorporated their company, naming it the Orange Crush Company.
Howell relinquished his right to have his name appear on the Orange Crush product, and from then on it was known as Ward’s. As partners, they distributed the soft drink syrups to establishments with soda fountains.
Neither of these men were the original inventors of the Orange Crush soft drink. The credit for that goes to J. M. Thompson of Chicago (in 1906). And, like any other successful idea, there were many imitators.
Ward’s Orange Crush went on to become the Orange Crush that is still popular today. Howell maintained rights to the Howel’s Root Beer. Unfortunately, there isn’t anything I can find to determine that Howel’s Root Beer survived into the 1950’s. Online, I have seen many Howel’s Root Beer signs, glass mugs and a puppet, so it seems that it must have been a very successful business at one time. They certainly were doing well enough to do a fair amount of advertising. The vintage Howel’s Root Beer advertisements feature a character appearing to be a brownie, dressed in a tunic and tights with a little cap on his head with “Howel’s” printed on it.
Howel’s Beverage Company
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