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Coca Cola Christmas

Updated on January 1, 2018

When a drug addled, John Pemberton, sold the formula for Coca Cola to Asa Candler in 1887, he had no idea what an American institution it would become. Today, Coke is as American as baseball and apple pie, but back then it was just another drug store medicinal that John Pemberton developed for his Eagle Drug and Chemical Company. He developed the non-alcoholic beverage in response to Prohibition that first passed in Fulton County, GA in 1886.

While Coca Cola was non-alcoholic, its early version was purported to include an active coca ingredient that carried many of the effects fo Cocaine which was not a banned substance at that time. As a result, many of the early users became more dependent on Coca Cola than other soda fountain drinks. So, why would John Pemberton sell this potential Tiger he had by the tail? John Pemberton was apparently addicted to morphine himself and near bankruptcy at the time of its sale. In fact, he was so desperate that he supposedly sold the formula to three different buyers.

Eventually though, Asa Candler was able to consolidate the ownership of the formula and became the true founder of the Coca Cola Company as we know it today. In 1903, the active coca ingredient was removed from the product so that it no longer carried the same dependent effects but It was Asa Candler's aggressive marketing of the Coca Cola brand and its products that led to its rapid expansion. In 1919, after dramatically growing the company and his own wealth, Candler gifted most of his stock to his children who eventually sold that stock to Ernest Woodruff.

Coke and Santa have Always Gone Together

From very early in its history, Coca Cola aligned itself with Santa Clause and the Christmas tradition. Being a southern company, it started out with a strong christian following and the family traditions of Christmas and the holidays provided a perfect marketing platform for developing the Coke brand. It was in the 1930s, that Coca Cola first rolled out its version of the jolly old Santa Clause in a red and white suit. And while that image was already somewhat common, it was popularized by Coca Cola and its advertising.

With brilliant advertising aplomb, the marketing staff would rollout different images of families and Santa each holiday using artists such as Haddon Sundblom. This beautifully crafted artwork with its nostalgic undertones became collectors items that remain very popular today. Coca Cola collectibles are one of the most popular category of advertising collectibles.

Interesting Books about Coca Cola and its Marketing - Have a Coke and a Smile

Being a bit obsessed about the marketing power of the Coca Cola brand, I have read all four of these books. They are all excellent in their own way.

For God, Country, and Coca-Cola
For God, Country, and Coca-Cola

The true story behind the founding and growth of the Coca Cola company This is a great book that starts at the very beginning through its writing in the 1990s. It adds color to the amazing personalities of the men that built Coke, including Pemberton, Candler, Woodruff and beyond.


The ever present question about Coke

Which do you prefer?

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NEW! Coca Cola Americana

Coke is American as You are!

Coca Cola has been with America in her wars, her commerce, in her homes, in her sports, in her life. Coca Cola Corporation has established a new, 'green' museum of the heritage of Coca Cola and the contributions it has made, culturally and otherwise.

The new Coca Cola museum, called Pemberton Place in Atlanta is here:

Pemberton Place

121 Baker Street

Atlanta, GA 30313


The MOST American is:

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True Coca Cola Machine Collectibles - These Antique Coke Machines are Collectors Items

These coca cola machines can be very valuable investments as their prices have steadily climbed in both good and bad times. Check out some of the current coke machine auctions going on at eBay right now.

Have You Invested in Coca Cola?

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Coke, Christmas and You - Any Connection?

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    • vineliner57 profile image

      Hal Gall 5 years ago from Bloomington, IN

      I keep waiting on the good folks at Coca Cola to pay me some dividends. I should be part owner by now, as much as I have consumed over the years!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Coke and Christmas go hand in hand I guess! Love Coke over Pepsi any day! :)

    • Rangoon House profile image

      AJ 5 years ago from Australia

      I enjoyed reading the history of coca cola - poor John Pemberton. I cannot imagine a world without coke, let alone an America without coke. Blessings.

    • malena10 profile image

      malena10 5 years ago

      I love Coca Cola commercials ;)

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 5 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Yes. When I was about 4 years old my Dad borrown a big cardboard Santa Claus Coke sign from the candy store across the street. He posed my sister and I in front of it in a way that blocked the Coca-Cola ad, but kept the Santa. That was our Christmas card that year.

    • bernie74 lm profile image

      bernie74 lm 5 years ago

      Wow a combination of one of my favorite drinks and my favorite time of year, I couldnt ask for any more.

      Blessed by an Angel!

    • Winter52 LM profile image

      Winter52 LM 5 years ago

      Coca Cola Christmas tree lights... who would have thought lol!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Nice and informative lens! a 5-star for you! Just feel free to visit my Extenze


    • paperfacets profile image

      Sherry Venegas 9 years ago from La Verne, CA

      I have always enjoyed Coca Cola commercials Thanks for the trip into polar bears and bright trucks. My favorites.

    • naturegirl7s profile image

      Yvonne L. B. 9 years ago from Covington, LA

      I've featured this lens on my Coca-cola Chocolate Cake lens.

    • KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 9 years ago

      It's the real thing! I never drink it, but love the vintage merchandise.

    • profile image

      rayadams 9 years ago

      Nice lens onCoca Cola . Very informative. Currently I am working on a series of lenses about Hair Loss Product. Please check it out.

    • profile image

      Stephene 10 years ago

      Very good lens. I am going to add to my favorites and 5 stars.

      Feel free to visit my Colon Cleanse site.

      Thank you.

    • profile image

      Kabsannie 10 years ago

      Hi, I got this lens link through your other lens The Mall on Squidoo, which was on the top 100 lenses. Congrats on that!! This is a terrific lens. Coca Cola goes way back for sure. This lens got 5* from me. I also voted on your polls. Great questions! Stop by my lens if you would!