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Coca-Cola Advertising

Probably the most recognizable of all soft drink advertising items are those that were produced to promote Coca-Cola. John S. Pemberton, an Atlanta pharmacist, invented the popular soft drink in 1886. Mr. Pemberton was attempting to create a patent medicine. His efforts resulted in a flavored syrup that, when mixed with carbonated water, was deemed excellent by those who tried it. The mixture was named Coca-Cola by Dr. Pemberton’s book keeper, Frank M. Robinson, and was sold at the soda fountain at Jacob's Pharmacy in Atlanta for 5 cents per glass.

Advertising was a huge factor in Coca-Cola's success from the beginning. Asa Candler, who bought the Coca-Cola formula from Dr. Pemberton in 1887, aggressively marketed the product to pharmacies outside of Atlanta. Mr. Candler used newspaper ads, coupons for free drinks, and a multitude of novelty souvenirs to promote the soft drink. These early advertising pieces are now quite rare and valuable.

Today, both vintage and current Coca-Cola advertising pieces are prized by advertising collectors. The most sought after Coca-Cola advertising pieces include tip trays, calendars, coolers, mirrors, and thermometers.


Quick Facts

  • The original Coca-Cola formula, which was marketed as a tonic, contained extracts from the caffeine-rich kola nut as well as trace amounts of cocaine. Coke still contains caffeine, but cocaine was removed from the formula in 1905
  • Frank M. Robinson, Dr. Pemberton's book keeper and partner, had perfect penmanship. He named the new soft drink Coca-Cola because he thought the two Cs looked attractive
  • The most expensive Coca-Cola collectible ever sold is a marble and alabaster soda fountain from the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago. The item sold for $4.5 million at a 2012 live auction

Recommended Items at Auction

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WW1 1915-1916 Army/Navy COCA-COLA Redemption Tokens
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
WW1 1915-1916 Army/Navy COCA-COLA Redemption Tokens
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$558 Bids
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$288 Bids
Tiffany 1904 St Louis World’s Fair COCA-COLA Money Clip
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Tiffany 1904 St Louis World’s Fair COCA-COLA Money Clip
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$247 Bids
Retro Sprite Boy COCA-COLA Metal Advertising Sign
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Retro Sprite Boy COCA-COLA Metal Advertising Sign
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$356 Bids
Classic COCA-COLA Santa Claus Metal Advertising Sign
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Classic COCA-COLA Santa Claus Metal Advertising Sign
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$355 Bids
M2 Haulers VW
Nov 04, 6:00 PM CDT
M2 Haulers VW
by Easterly Auction Company
Est: $0- $0
$255 Bids
EMBOSSED TIN THERMOMETER SIGN COCA COLA GOLD
Feb 11, 9:00 AM CST
EMBOSSED TIN THERMOMETER SIGN COCA COLA GOLD
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$405 Bids
Porcelain Coca Cola Delicious & Refreshing Sign
Oct 27, 1:00 PM CDT
Porcelain Coca Cola Delicious & Refreshing Sign
by McCurley Auction Company
Est: $0- $0
$235 Bids
NOS TIN 12" BUTTON SIGN DRINK COCA COLA
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
NOS TIN 12" BUTTON SIGN DRINK COCA COLA
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$2254 Bids
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$224 Bids
EMBOSSED TIN DRINK COCA COLA TIN SIGN
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
EMBOSSED TIN DRINK COCA COLA TIN SIGN
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$1753 Bids
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Lot of 13 Vintage COCA-COLA Christmas Ornaments
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$303 Bids
PORCELAIN SIGN DRINK COCA COLA FOUNTAIN SERVICE
Feb 12, 9:00 AM CST
PORCELAIN SIGN DRINK COCA COLA FOUNTAIN SERVICE
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$703 Bids
Mickey Mantle Coca-Cola Advertising Baseball Card
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Mickey Mantle Coca-Cola Advertising Baseball Card
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$143 Bids
Retro Working COCA-COLA Nostalgic AM/FM Radio
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Retro Working COCA-COLA Nostalgic AM/FM Radio
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$142 Bids
Muhammad Ali Gem 10 COCA-COLA Advertising Card
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Muhammad Ali Gem 10 COCA-COLA Advertising Card
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$62 Bids
Muhammad Ali Gem 10 COCA-COLA Advertising Card
Oct 30, 12:00 PM EDT
Muhammad Ali Gem 10 COCA-COLA Advertising Card
by South Florida Auction & Estate Sale Services
Est: $6- $1,000
$62 Bids
2 SIDED TIN SIGN TAKE A CASE HOME COCA COLA $1.00
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
2 SIDED TIN SIGN TAKE A CASE HOME COCA COLA $1.00
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
12" THERMOMETER SIGN DRINK COCA COLA
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
12" THERMOMETER SIGN DRINK COCA COLA
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
DOOR PUSH SIGN COCA COLA REFRESHING NEW FEELING
Feb 11, 9:00 AM CST
DOOR PUSH SIGN COCA COLA REFRESHING NEW FEELING
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
TIN SIGN COCA COLA THINGS GO BETTER WITH COKE
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
TIN SIGN COCA COLA THINGS GO BETTER WITH COKE
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
TIN SIGN DRINK COCA COLA THINGS GO BETTER COKE
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
TIN SIGN DRINK COCA COLA THINGS GO BETTER COKE
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
NOS 16" TIN BUTTON SIGN COCA COLA
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
NOS 16" TIN BUTTON SIGN COCA COLA
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$1252 Bids
PORCELAIN COCA COLA BUTTON SIGN 24"
Dec 04, 9:00 AM CST
PORCELAIN COCA COLA BUTTON SIGN 24"
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$1002 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Coca-Cola Advertising


Donley Auction Services

Donley Auction Services

Millers Auction Co.

Millers Auction Co.

Matthew Bullock Auctioneers

Matthew Bullock Auctioneers