Monday, April 02, 2007

Double Cola barn along River Road.

As someone who enjoys photography, there are times that I will be going somewhere without my camera and see something I really wish I could photograph. If it is within relatively close driving range from home, it stays fresh on mind until I have a free weekend to go back and visit the place. Such an event happened recently. My wife and I were driving to Ashland City, TN. I brought my camera, but left its memory card at home. Last Friday, the weather was perfect; I had my chance. The scene is perfect: A barn with character, reflecting on a pond on a beautiful Spring day.

Double Cola barn

Tennessee Highway 249 runs between Pegram and Ashland City in Cheatham County. This segment of TN249 is along River Road, which is a scenic drive that runs parallel to the south side of the Cumberland River from West Nashville to Ashland City. At the spot the above photo was taken, I could turn around and see the river about 2000 feet away.

The origins of Double Cola go back to 1922 when businessmen from Chattanooga launched their first soda as the Good Grape Company. Two years later, they change their name to the Seminole Flavor Company and launch Marvel Cola, which is soon renamed Jumbo Cola. In 1933, the cola was sold in 12 ounce bottles, which was roughly twice the size of other available colas at the same price, and "Double Cola" became the flagship product. Since then, they have added more products, such as the popular Ski citrus soda and the Jumbo line of fruit sodas.

Drink Double Cola. Get a Big Lift

In this close-up of the Double Cola as, you may be able to tell that this is a large metal sign affixed to the barn and not painted directly onto the barn. I would estimate the sign being made in the 1960s. What I don't know is if that is the original location of the advertisement sign, or if the barn owner bought it somewhere else and moved it here. The main message is Drink Double Cola with the slogan of Get a BIG Lift! The hand is holding the Double Cola bottle, and around the logo are the words: Double Measure, Double Pleasure.

From its beginnings, the distribution region of the country steadily grew all over the southern and then Midwest United States. However, it is difficult to stay competitive against the soda giants, and they have withdrawn from markets. I haven't gone looking for their brands all over Cheatham County, but I have never seen them for sale in my own Davidson County, which borders Cheatham to the east. I've seen it available at a couple of places in Rutherford County, but the Double Cola headquarters is just a couple of hours away in Chattanooga and their primary bottler is in Huntsville.

See it on a map HERE.
This photo was highlighted on the Nashville is Talking blog.