Dr Pepper Exhibit, Rockdale Depot Museum.

This is one of many Rockdale Historical Society exhibits planned for the Rockdale Depot Museum over the coming months.

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The Rockdale Historical Society with the assistance Bill Hall of Taylor, has put a massive Dr Pepper museum display set to run until the museum is redecorated for Christmas. Bill has been an avid collector of Dr Pepper memorabilia for more years than he cares to admit and currently has one of the best collections in the United States.


Dr Pepper, a Texas beverage, originated at Morrison's Old Corner Drug in Waco, Texas in 1885 invented by Charles Alderton. Alderton was a pharmacist employed at Morrison's Old Corner Drug who was attempting to create a beverage with the fountain fragrances of fruit and berries.

The beverage, which was introduced as a caffeine and cocaine free alternative to other drinks on the market, was promoted by the owner of the Old Corner Drug, Wade Morrison. Both Morrison and Alderton had earlier lived in Rural Retreat, West Virginia where they worked in a drug store for Dr. Charles Pepper.

When a romance between Morrison and Dr. Pepper's daughter failed to go anywhere, Morrison and Alderton moved to Waco. A year later, Morrison owned his own drug store called Morrison's Old Corner Drug.

As they began serving up the new drink at the fountain, lines began to form to try the tasty new beverage. A customer, Robert S. Lazenby, owner of the Circle A Ginger Ale Bottling Company in Waco, liked the new drink and offered to produce the syrup in his bottling plant. Being a chemist, Lazenby made a few changes to the new beverage's quality and flavor.

In 1886, Morrison and Lazenby formed a new company, The Artesian Mfg. & Bottling Works at 327 S. Fifth Street and introduced Dr Pepper in Hiram Codd's internal ball stoppered bottle.

In 1891, a Texas businessman by the name of Sam Houston Prim tasted the new fountain drink and decided to sell it in his bottling plant in Dublin, Texas, 80 miles to the west of Waco. In 1925, the first Dr Pepper franchise agreement was issued to the Dublin Bottling Works. Since Sam Houston Prim was the first person to bottle Dr Pepper, he was given first choice on a franchise area. He chose a modest 44-mile radius. His daughter, plant heir Grace Prim Lyon, remarked many years later that he could have taken the entire state or even the Dallas/Fort Worth area, but he apparently was satisfied with the informal arrangement he had had for more than three decades. On the back of his franchise agreement, he drew a small map with Dublin at the center. He penciled in Tolar to the northeast, Desdemona and Carbon to the west, Comanche to the south, Lamkin and Fairy to the east and Iredell to the southeast,and north of Stephenville (what would eventually become I-20) officially claiming the same area he had considered his territory since he began bottling in 1891.

In 1904, Lazenby and O'Hara introduced Dr Pepper at the 1904 World's Fair Exposition in St. Louis. The exposition also introduced Hamburgers and frankfurters served on buns and the ice cream cone served in large numbers.

In 1905, Dr Pepper was also bottled in Fort Worth by the Artesia Bottling Company, with Henry Lazenby, brother of Robert Lazenby, managing the operation.

In 1907, Robert S. Lazenby bought out Morrison's interests in the company to become the sole owner of the company that first operated as the Circle "A" Corporation of America and later as The Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company.

From 1910 to 1914, Dr Pepper was identified with the slogan, "King of Beverages."

In 1923, The Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company became The Dr Pepper Company.

Dr Pepper 10-2-4 Club

The Dr Pepper 10-2-4 Club is a national organization of people dedicated to the study of the history and collecting of memorabilia of the Dr Pepper Company. The Dr Pepper 10-2-4 Club provides: Nationwide communication among Dr Pepper collectors,a comprehensive quarterly newsletter - Lion's Roar, and an annual convention and swap meet.

Dr Pepper Exhibit at the Rockdale Depot Museum

The current Dr Pepper Exhibit is scheduled to remain until December of 2010 when the museum is decorated for Christmas. As you can see from the following Dr Pepper exhibit photographs, courtesy of Len Kubiak, this is an extensive collection not likely to be seen outside of the Waco and Dublin Dr Pepper museums.

"Shooting a Waco" at the Rockdale Depot Dr Pepper Exhibit.


The Rockdale I&GN Depot Museum is located in downtown Rockdale (11 N. MAIN ST.)in the recently restored former International & Great Northern Passenger Train Depot.

Dedicated to the preservation of our railroad and local history, the museum currently houses a collection of railroad and other artifacts relating to the early history of Rockdale and the surrounding areas. In addition to the fully restored passenger depot, the site has on display a Missouri-Pacific dining car, the 36 "Cheyenne Mountain", and a restored Missouri-Pacific (StLB&M) caboose. The site also includes an operating model railroad in O and HO scales, and an operational early-day blacksmith shop. For more information about the depot restoration project, see ROCKDALE I&GN DEPOT

Painting of the Rockdale International & Great Northern Railroad Passenger and Freight Depots and McVoy's Grocery and Feed Store across the street.


MAILING ADDRESS: Rockdale I&GN Depot Museum, PO Box 778, Rockdale, Texas 76567 -USA
PHONE: 512-446-2020

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This is a work in progress. Come back often and send me your stories and old pictures and I'll post them on the web.

Webmaster : Len Kubiak
1264 FM2116, Rockdale, Texas 76567
PHONE: 512 630-4619

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