"Tin Litho" Pulver
(c. 1899)

Pulver Chocolate & Chicle Mfg. Co., Rochester, NY, c. 1899, 24". The tin litho Pulver is one version of an early tall case Pulver. It comes in 2 types, which differ only in their front panels: Chocolate Cocoa and Gum, and Kola-Pepsin Gum. The other tall case version is just as tall and has porcelain front and side panels, and is the version collectors mean when they refer to a 'tall case Pulver.' Silent Salesmen Too (page 158) has some good pictures of examples of both versions and describes some variations. Check it out if you want to learn more.

The case on this is made of embossed tin finished with beautiful lithographed advertising for Pulver gum. The top, the bottom, and the side rails are made of thick painted steel. I can't think of a more striking machine than one of these in good condition. Even a rough one is pretty, but in mint condition it's so gorgeous that if Phoebe Cates Katie Holmes Jennifer Anniston were standing naked next to a mint example, giving you come hither eyes, you'd look at the tin litho. I wouldn't---I'm a heterosexual guy---but you might if you're, say, a heterosexual woman or a long-time male resident of San Francisco. I might sneak a look at the Pulver, but would try to not get caught.

But enough about sexual preferences and naked starlets. The mechanism inside the tin litho Pulver is the same as that in other tall case Pulvers and is similar to those in the later short case Pulvers. The 2 major differences between tall case and short case mechanisms is that the tall case mechs are taller than the short case mechs (duh!), and the characters differ. Tall case and tin litho Pulvers came with the Yellow Kid, Buster Brown, Foxy Grandpa (a.k.a the Professor), or Uncle Sam. I'm not intimately familiar with the relative rarity of these characters, but I know that Buster Brown and Uncle Sam are both quite scarce, as is a version of the Professor that bows several times as it rotates.

Most tin litho Pulvers are faded, with the graphics visible but not bold and vibrant. Some are rusty. Not surprisingly, price depends on the condition of the case and on the character. Tin litho Pulvers are considered rare and are hard to find in any condition.

The examples pictured above represent the 2 tin litho versions pictured in Silent Salesmen Too. They're both 100% original, although the Kola-Pepsin Gum is not quite complete.



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