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Most expensive ignorance EVER?!??


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Great GoogaMooga~talk about not knowing
what you're selling--

How much could missing information cost
you. In this case of this it was

First link is
his initial listing,the second is the guy who bought it and re-listed



Auction 1:
Ending bid:
US $304.00
Jun-21-07 10:09:22 PDT

Item location: lynn, MA, United States
2 bids
Winning bidder: collectordan

Starting time: Jun-14-07
10:09:22 PDT
Starting bid: US $299.00

Seller: petere92346(
96Feedback score is 50 to 99)
Feedback: 100% Positive
since May-22-07 in United States

this is a
full bottle of allsop's arctic ale.brewed in 1852 for the express
purpose of an arctic expedition that year in search of sir john
franklin. this ale was used as a fight against "scurvy" back then and
would not freeze until below 12o F.the bottle and label are in perfect
condition and it is corked and sealed.attached is a hand wriiten
explanation about this bottle of ale on it's trip to the arctic and
where it ended up afterwood.you can google "allsopp's" and read about
about this under the heading beer pages.com. this is a great collectable
and very rare.any questions you may have please contact me and i will
try and answer them.

Auction 2:

RAREST Historic
Beer in the World! AMAZING HISTORY!!! Item number: 260145824374

Winning bid: US $503,300.00

Ended: Aug-12-07 19:30:00 PDT
Item location: Tulsa,
Oklahoma, United States
History: 157 bids
Winning bidder:
v00d004sc0re( 57Feedback score is 50 to 99)

Starting time:
Aug-02-07 19:30:00 PDT
Starting bid: US $1.00

collectordan( 518Feedback score is 500 to 999) Member is a PowerSeller
99.2% Positive
Member: since Mar-22-99 in United States

Until the 1850s Allsopp’s Brewery was most notable for brewing
some of the first India Pale Ales for export to the colonies. However,
Samuel Allsopp was approached about a different recipe; Sir Edward
Belcher was about to led an arctic expedition (1852) to search for the
lost explorer Sir John Franklin. The Expedition needed a brew that
withstand arctic and sub arctic temperatures, and provide a degree of
sustenance and nutritious value. “Captain Belcher reported that
Allsopp's Arctic Ale proved to be "a valuable antiscorbutic", helping
fight off scurvy, the bane of all sea voyages in those days.” He added
that the beer was "a great blessing to us, particularly for our sick"
and that it refused to freeze until the temperature dropped well below
zero.” [beerpages.com]

What you are looking at is an actual
museum quality sealed and intact bottle of Samuel Allsopp’s Arctic Ale
brewed for the 1852 Expedition to the Arctic lead by Sir Edward Belcher.
This bottle of beer is likely the rarest, oldest, and most documented
bottle of beer in existence! Not to mention the unbelievably unique
history surrounding it. Accompanying the bottle is an actual limited
handwritten history about the bottle itself.

It reads as

“This ale was specially brewed and bottled in
England, in 1852, for Kane’s Expedition in search of Sir John Franklin.
A portion of the lot was cached in the Arctic; and was afterwards taken
back to England, where it was bought by Allsopp, from whom Mr. Jus.
Fennell obtained a part.

This bottle was given to me by
Mr. Fennell May 13, 1919. Should I depart from this (by that time
probably) dry world before consuming the contents, let my son and
brethren perform my duties and enjoy my rights in that respect, on the
eve of my funeral (if they find it in time) – unless such act be then
illegal, in which case those of the aforesaid trustees who sufficiently
learned in law shall advise ac-????? To the rule of ey fares.

Two bottles of this ale were guests of honor at the banquet given to
Shackleton and Peary, in Boston, some years ago. (1907/1908) The
skeletons of said guests were preserved as mementos of Sir John
Franklin! (Useful suggestion regarding the “cast off shell” of the

Signed: Percy G Bolster
Research seems to point toward Percy
Bolster being an attorney in the Boston area in the early 20th C. I am
not sure who Kane is? that he is referring in the Expedition. Perhaps a
financier or someone his friend Fennell told him of.

handwritten note was laminated some time back. The bottle itself is in
excellent condition, still full and wax sealed over cork. The fill line
is possibly the original fill line for the bottle. The wax seal
appears lightly chipped in one area. Please read the e-bay disclaimers
concerning this auction* You are bidding on what most would consider the
rarest bottle of beer in the world! This bottle’s history is amazing!

bottles were sent over for the celebration Peary and Shackleton’s North
Pole expedition, in Boston, over 100 years ago, and those bottles were
considered a RARE TREASURE at that time!!! Do your research this piece
is nothing short of museum quality, also find it interesting that the
world record price paid for a full corked bottle of wine was a Chateau
Margaux 1789 that was part of Thomas Jefferson’s personal collection,
LONDON Christies 1989 $265,000.

Although this bottle is not quit
of that caliber, it is rather close, with age, condition, provenance,
and history. Imagine it was rare enough 100 years ago to be something
very special, something that would be opened for a successful 1st
expedition to the North Pole.

So here is your chance, own the
rarest bottle of beer in the world, make the Guinness Book of World
Records, or do as you please. This is most certainly a once in a
lifetime opportunity. A down payment is expected at auction end. The
transaction can be closed in a number of conventional ways, if you have
the money to purchase this item, you are well familiar with all of them.
Standard auction terms and conditions govern this auction. Please do
not waste my time with ridiculous comments or questions, serious buyers
and inquiries only.

This listing complies
with ebay rules on the sale of alcohol. As per ebay rules:

- The value of the
item is in the collectible container, not its contents.

- The container has not been opened and any incidental
contents are not intended for consumption.
The item is not available at any retail outlet, and the container has a
value that substantially exceeds the

current retail price of the alcohol in the container.

- As the seller, I will take all appropriate steps to
ensure that the buyer is of lawful age in the buyer and seller's

jurisdiction. (21 in the United States, 18
most everywhere else)

- Buyers and
sellers both ensure that the sale complies with all applicable laws and
shipping regulations.

The following is a passage from the
Belcherfoundation.com web page (The section covering the 1852
Expedition). Note the excellent references to their provisions,
experiments with freezing liquids, and the utter hard ship this bottle
took to go, be cached, withstand, and return and survive! I encourage
you to research the expedition and history of Belcher further, it will
allow for hundreds of hours of fun.

Arctic Explorer

After Captain Sir Edward Belcher returned to England, in 1852 he was
placed in command of five vessels, aptly named the Pioneer, the
Resolute, the Assistance, the Intrepid, and the North Star, for the
performance of an Arctic expedition, the account of which Sir Edward
related in his two-volume work, The Last of the Arctic Voyages (1855).
To him was given the nearly impossible mission of searching for the
missing ships commanded by Sir John Franklin (1786-1847), who had sailed
to the Canadian Arctic in 1845 in an attempt to find the Northwest
Passage and had never returned. Numerous expeditions were sent to look
for Franklin over the next two decades, but few definitive traces of his
fate were found until the discovery of records from his expedition
revealed that he and his crew had perished after their ships had become
icebound in 1846.

Sir Edward Belcher’s expedition sailed from
England in the spring of 1852 and spent the next two years scouring the
Arctic for traces of Sir John Franklin and his men. Belcher’s
expedition made exhaustive searches to the north, east, and west, but no
evidence revealing the location of the lost Franklin expedition were
found in these areas. This, coupled with other intelligence he gathered,
led Sir Edward to the conclusion that Sir John Franklin’s fate would be
found in the southern parts of the Arctic. Sir Edward proved correct in
this assessment, and proof of the Franklin expedition’s unfortunate
deaths to the south was later discovered by another expedition.

In addition to helping determine the whereabouts of Sir John Franklin
and his men, Sir Edward Belcher’s expedition made significant
discoveries with regard to Canadian Arctic geography, wildlife, and
climatology. Numerous Arctic geographical locations were explored and
named by the Belcher expedition. Among these were Barrow Bay,
Northumberland Sound, Exmouth Island, North Cornwall, Princess Royal
Island, North Kent Island, Prince Edward’s Cape, Prince Albert’s Island,
Buckingham Island, Victoria Archipelago, and Cape Disraeli. Belcher
Channel (located below Cornwall Island) was named for Sir Edward
Belcher, as were the Belcher Islands (a group of large islands in the
southern part of Hudson Bay). There is a "Belcher Point" situated on
Devon Island in the Canadian Arctic.

With regards to the
climate and wildlife of the Arctic, Sir Edward made important
observations. He performed scientific experiments on the freezing of
liquids, the depth of the ice, and the effects of the extreme cold on
instruments such as thermometers. He also studied the formation,
characteristics, and patterns of the Arctic ice floes (frozen sheets of
ice, sometimes acres wide, and typically several feet in thickness). His
analysis of the temperatures, barometric pressures, winds, and weather
patterns of the Arctic was extensive. His meteorological surveys
revealed a climate where temperatures could dip lower than fifty degrees
below zero, and where winters averaged twenty to thirty degrees below

In addition to being a natural leader and having a
brilliant scientific mind, Sir Edward Belcher was a kind, compassionate
man deeply interested in the welfare of his crew and others. He designed
significant improvements for his ship which rendered it much warmer,
drier, and more comfortable for the crewmen. His efforts to improve the
ship included measures to reduce the condensation of water vapor caused
by cold air entering the interior of the ship. Prior to his
improvements, water vapor condensed inside the ship rendering it damp
and moist, which was unhealthy for the men. Sir Edward remedied this
problem, as well as the problem of poor air circulation. By using the
ship’s pumps to circulate air, the problem of stagnant air was solved.
He also devised methods of insulating the ship from the cold Arctic air,
resulting in a warmer, more comfortable, and healthier environment for
the sailors. Sir Edward preserved this knowledge in his narrative of his
Arctic voyage, and also suggested an improved design for building
Arctic vessels.

Sir Edward and his crew got along well, and
he frequently praised them and considered them to be among the finest
sailors in the navy. His crew expressed their respect, admiration, and
loyalty to him repeatedly, and presented him with entertainments such as
plays and a musical concert. In return, Sir Edward conducted
recreations such as his "Loyal Circle of Arctic Engineers" which met to
discuss matters of naval and scientific interest. He also proposed
topics (sometimes humorous) for the crewmen to research, and awarded
them medals for jobs well done. Evening schools, where the crew were
taught reading, writing, and arithmetic, were also implemented.

On Christmas Day, 1852, the men from Sir Edward’s expedition
pleasantly awoke Edward with music and a Christmas song. They then
wished him a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. At noon, the
festivities aboard Sir Edward’s ship began, and the crew let out a loud
cheer as Sir Edward told them what a good job they had done and raised
his glass to toast the Queen of England. Roast beef, plum pudding, mince
pies, and frosted cakes added to the Christmas good cheer. The officers
and crew thoroughly enjoyed their first Christmas in the Arctic, warm
feelings felt among all.

Sir Edward Belcher was a wise,
generous, and merciful man. Upon learning that many families in
Greenland were dying from starvation, Sir Edward donated provisions for
their relief. He believed that the Eskimos living in the Arctic regions
were both highly intelligent and resourceful. He was particularly
impressed by the Eskimos’ skillful construction of their dwellings,
which he found conducive to healthy living conditions. His wisdom led
him to advise his men against the overuse of alcoholic beverages, advice
which he himself followed. Throughout the expedition, Sir Edward
expressed his faith that God would protect him and his men. He led the
men in prayers and religious services.

Ice floes, which could
batter a ship to pieces, were one of the big dangers of Arctic voyages.
It was unlikely that a ship could withstand being "nipped" or hit by
such a floating mass of ice. According to Sir Edward Belcher’s
calculations, the floating weight of a floe measuring merely 300 square
yards would be 63,080 tons; and one floe witnessed by Belcher extended
as far as the eye could see. It was doubtful that any ship could
withstand such pressure exerted against it.

In fact, many
vessels were lost due to the treacherous and unpredictable Arctic ice.
In 1852, Sir Edward Belcher found the wreck of the Regalia, which had
been sheared completely through by the ice. In the same year, the ship
M’Clellan was crunched by the ice and sank. In 1853, a similar fate
occurred when the Breadalbane transport ship was lost to the ice’s
treachery and sank in only fifteen minutes. Sir Edward’s own ships were
in danger of being caught in the clutches of the ice many times, but
escaped through Sir Edward’s skillful navigation.

The ice
could create tragic results. In one incident, a lieutenant named Bellot
(from Captain Inglefield’s expedition) fell through a crack in the ice
and drowned. Certain death likewise threatened members of another
expedition under Commander M’Clure in the Investigator, but just in
time, M’Clure and his icebound crew were rescued by members of the
Belcher expedition, and the Investigator was abandoned.

winter of 1853-1854 was unusually severe. The temperature dropped at one
point to fifty-nine degrees below zero, and averaged thirty degrees
below zero for the months of November 1853 through March 1854. Few
Arctic explorers prior to Sir Edward Belcher had experienced such a
severe winter, and Sir Edward speculated that the temperatures may have
been the lowest ever recorded by human beings. However, thanks to Sir
Edward’s improvements to the ship, his men were comfortable throughout
this harsh winter, with the temperatures inside the ship infinitely more
hospitable than the frigid outside air. Between the Christmas and New
Year’s holidays, the crew cheerfully sang songs. New Year’s Day, 1854,
found the men aboard Sir Edward Belcher’s ships in good humor and of
good cheer.

Long expeditions into the harsh Arctic climate,
however, were not without their penalties. The frigid winters, and
resulting accumulation of ice, required a ship to fasten down for
"winter harbor." Thus, the crews had to deal with long periods of
confinement and inactivity (traveling was usually impractical in the
winter). Furthermore, the sun is not visible during the dark Arctic
winters. Because game was scarce in some areas, a crew might have to
survive mainly on preserved food. Even if hunting was successful, it
might yield only walrus, which some found distasteful. The resulting
lack of adequate nutrients could lead to the disease known as scurvy.

By 1854, several of the men in the Belcher expedition were becoming
ill. Sir Edward Belcher cared very deeply for his men, and thus he knew
it would be very difficult for them to last another year in the Arctic.
To the equal concern of Sir Edward, several of the Investigator’s crew
(which had been rescued by Belcher’s men in 1853) also were sick. Sir
Edward was concerned about their welfare and was determined to get them
safely home to England as soon as possible. In his own words, Sir Edward
valued even one human life far greater than the value of material
objects like ships.

As matters stood in early 1854, Sir
Edward Belcher knew the following facts: first, that his mission to
search for Sir John Franklin had been completed — all the areas he was
ordered to search had been searched; second, that the missing men of the
Investigator had been rescued; third, that his instructions from the
Admiralty anticipated his return in 1854; and finally, that his crew
(which had been in the Arctic for two years) needed to be taken back to
England for their own health and safety. Added to this was the fact that
fuel and food were running low, and might not last another year.

Sir Edward therefore made the intelligent and compassionate (for his
crew’s sake) decision to return to England in 1854 — a decision which
the Admiralty agreed with. The terrible winter of 1853-1854 had left
four of the Belcher expedition’s ships locked in the ice. Aided by
blasting and a battering ram, Sir Edward was successful in extricating
two of them, but they were barred from further progress by an ice pack.
Reluctantly, and with sadness in his heart for their loss, Sir Edward
ordered his ships to be abandoned in accordance with the Admiralty’s

Luckily for the loyal crew who served under
him, Sir Edward Belcher had the foresight to know that it would be
senseless to try to stay with the ships. First, his orders from the
Admiralty required the whole expedition to be withdrawn. Second, it was
unclear if the ships could ever be extricated from the ice. Third, the
ships quickly could be crunched by the ice in a matter of minutes, like
the Breadalbane, allowing little time to rescue any crew members.
Finally, and most importantly, he had sick men who needed to be taken
back to England and it would be risking all of the crew’s lives to try
to save the ships.

The Admiralty had placed in Sir Edward
Belcher’s hands the safety of the entire expedition, and he, above all,
was compassionate enough to fulfill that order to save human life. Sir
Edward once said that he valued even one human life far greater than the
value of material objects like ships. Unlike so many vainglorious
explorers who risk all, including the lives of their crew, in a pursuit
of glory, Sir Edward sought only mercy and justice. For that decision,
he deserves the highest praise.

In the summer of 1854, the
expedition thus departed for England in the North Star, in accordance
with the Admiralty’s instructions. Soon after they departed, they
encountered the Phoenix and the Talbot, two supply ships which helped to
transport the expedition back to England. The crew of the Belcher
expedition (along with Investigator’s rescued men) safely arrived in
England in September 1854. The Belcher expedition had successfully
completed its mission. The expedition had exhaustively searched the
areas it was ordered to search for Sir John Franklin and his men.
Belcher’s expedition helped determine that Sir John Franklin’s fate
would likely be found to the south, thus answering many questions about
Franklin’s whereabouts. Furthermore, the Belcher expedition explored
thousands of miles of Arctic landscape and made many contributions to
Arctic geography and meteorology.

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On Aug-04-07 at 10:03:53 PDT, seller added the
following information:

Further research suggests that this is the
oldest known sealed bottle of beer in the world. The bottle believed to
be the oldest was a bottle of 1869 Ratcliffs, combine that with a
recent high sale on the worlds oldest sealed bottle of Scotch (1858),
without exceptional history, @ 14,000 GBP apx $28,650. and this sealed
historic bottle of Allsopp's Arctic Ale is about as rare as they get.
Use it for a great advertising promotion, put your bar, club, or
restaurant on the map by having the worlds oldest and most historic
known bottle of beer, a real once in a life opportunity!!! Not to
mention all of the attributes to this bottles history and provenance!!

Aug-05-07 at 18:46:26 PDT, seller added the following information:
A comment on
the Kane issue.
Hi - not a question, rather a comment: the Kane
mentioned is
certainly Elisha Kent Kane (1820-1857), a famous American
arctic explorer, who was a member of the first Grinnell
Expedition in search of Franklin, 1850-1851; and commander of
the second Grinnell Expedition, 1853-1855. However, he was at
home giving lectures in 1852. Good luck with the auction, it's a
wonderful relic.
- Thanks for the excellent insight.
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I was working in the garage several years ago, and reached for my open beer, taking a big gulp. Problem was, it wasn't mine. Well, it may have been, but was a beer that had been out there probably for months. By the time I took the swig it had gotten "chunky."

Hmm, not as good a story. Sorry.

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According to the US military beer has a life of 3 years maximum. Then it gives you a headache. Three year old canned beer was dumped on the Greenland icecap out of the back of three C-130's full around the late 1960's and it is the favorite pause of every Greenland expidition that travels over the icecap.


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The oldest beer recipe was found in or around the Pyramids a few years ago. A Japanese brewery made a few cases for the novelty of it, and it apparently was a pleasant drink. They called it Old Kingdom beer, but it was more like white wine than a current type ale or lager.

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