Today in 1963, US Patent 3100056 A was issued, an invention of John A. Friday Jr., assigned to the Duquesne Brewing Company Of Pittsburgh, for his “Reusable Bottle Cases.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:
This invention relates broadly to reusable containers for bottles and the like and is particularly useful for beverage bottle cases, such as beer cases where the container is subjected to frequent reuse.
In my invention, I provide a reusable case for bottles and the like comprising, in combination, a unitary molded container having side walls, end walls, a bottom wall and opposed top flap elements, all of said elements and walls being integrally formed complete in a single piece of plastic material and a plurality of longitudinal and lateral cell-forming partition members disposed in said container, said end walls having handle means comprising openings in the upper central portions thereof, said top flap elements having lockable closing means selectively engageable with said handle means. I further provide hinge means comprising thinned flexible portions in said top flap elements adjacent said side walls. In addition, I provide convex bulges in the side and end walls at the corners of the container. Further, I provide roughened surfaces on particular portions of the container to prevent slippage between the cases from occurring when stacking or transporting them.
Thus, I have invented a bottle case that is a unitary container which is integrally formed as a single piece of plastic, which is tough and durable and may be used many times over and above the ordinary case. My case ice has a lockably closable top for the complete protection of the bottles contained therein and bulged corners for the protection of the printed material on the sides and ends of the container.
The advantages of a unitary structure are, inter alia, that the case is free of connections that are weaker than the case itself. There is less likelihood of weak spots. It also eliminates costly assembly operations and thus, is not only stronger but less expensive.