Meet Your Officers

Introducing you to the Board Members of the 2022-2024 Federation of Historical Bottle Collectors.

Michael Seeliger, President, grew up in Monona, Wisconsin, and still lives within 20 miles of his hometown. He married his wife, Alice, in 1969 and together they have collected bottles since the 1960s. They started by collecting ruby red Schlitz beer bottles but soon got hooked on older bottles, especially Warner’s when Mike came across a dump containing only Warner bottles. Mike and Alice wrote the book H. H. Warner His Company & His Bottles in 1974 and work on a continuously updated e-book expanding the original publication. Mike is a professional chemist and chemical/hazardous materials consultant. Semi-retired, they attend numerous shows traveling in their RV whenever possible. They were instrumental in the founding and development of the South Central Wisconsin Bottle Club in the 1970s and have been members of the Federation since then. They have two sons and five grandkids. Mike collects examples of historical bottles, medicines, figural bitters, Warner bottles, and works passionately with Mike and Kathie Craig in the development of their Warner & Dr. Craig collections.
Jeff Wichmann, FOHBC First Vice President, is a California native who has parlayed his vast knowledge of antique bottles and glass into a full-time related business called American Bottle Auctions. His was the first auction house to provide full-color glossy catalogs sent to interested collectors at no charge. He also launched what is believed to be the first online antique bottle auction. In 2013, Jeff was inducted onto the FOHBC Honor Roll, but given his increase in antique bottle collecting-related activities, including financial support of the Federation, the board of directors voted to move him up to the organization’s highest Hall of Fame honor level. Photography of old glass is one of his strong points. He also shares his knowledge on his website americanbottle.com. In 1999, he published The Best of the West – Antique Western Bitters Bottles, a book containing information of value to collectors of that genre.
Position Vacant, FOHBC Second Vice President, Position open and looking to fill the position.
Alice J. Seeliger, FOHBC Secretary, has been in the background of the bottle-collecting world, supporting Michael in his hobby, since the early 70s. Professionally, she has been the right-hand assistant of a Bank Manager, Marketing and Sales Director of a Consulting Firm, President of an Asbestos Abatement Company, and owner of a small Desktop Publishing, Marketing Consulting, and Graphics Design business. For the past 15 years she has managed the legal paperwork necessary to transport and dispose of hazardous waste for small companies in the Midwest. “Full retirement doesn’t seem to be in my genes but I keep trying!” Alice has been President of the Oregon Area Chamber of Commerce, Oregon Preschool Inc., and Oregon Rotary Club and served on numerous educational and political boards. Most recently, she stepped forward to fill a need for a proofreader of the newly combined Antique Bottle & Glass Collector magazine.
Jim Berry Jim Berry, FOHBC Treasurer, was born and raised in Ephratah, a small town in upstate New York. He had served as Highway Superintendent in the Town of Ephratah for the past 28 years and has been happily retired from that position for almost three years. Jim is a collector of colored inks, historical flasks, mineral waters, and local history. Jim and his wife, Valeri, enjoy traveling, especially to visit family and also attend bottle shows across the country. Jim spends a lot of time hunting, fishing and making maple syrup and honey. He has been married to Val for 45 years; they have five children (three are in the U.S. Air Force), twelve grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Craig Cassetta, FOHBC Historianis a native Californian. He grew up and attended schools in Willows, California and completed his masters degree at UC Berkeley. He works for the state of California as a regional manager for an adoptions office that serves families in northern California and has worked in adoptions since 2004. He has two teenage sons, Nicolas (13) and Joseph (17) and his wife’s name is Lourdes. They have a dog named Lucy. Craig always loved exploring and reading about the development of the American West. A.B. Guthrie and Elmore Leonard are two of his favorite authors. His first memory of collecting is gathering rocks and polishing them when he was a child. His curiosity about the West growing up was fed through book reading, exploring caves and searching for arrowheads while on camping trips. During summers in college, he worked as a stream surveyor in national forests. He loved the experience of seeing what was around the next bend in the water—no intact bottles ever discovered unfortunately! He is a member of the 49er Historical Bottle Club and his collecting focus is gold rush bottles. He also enjoys collecting movie posters and glass fishing floats.
Position Vacant, FOHBC Merchandise DirectorPosition open and looking to fill the position.
Elizabeth Meyer, FOHBC Membership Director, is a native and proud Texan living in Houston. She has a love for antiques, collectibles, and especially is passionate about her horses, and enjoys spending time with her daughter and three grandchildren. Elizabeth has worked professionally at FMG Design for the past 24+ years in various positions including project management, information technology, accounting, human resources, quality control, and now Sr. Vice President. She loves working with people, traveling with family and enjoys going to bottle shows and looking for unique small antiques and holy water bottles. She has taken on the FOHBC Business Manager position as a non-voting and compensated consultant.
Position Vacant, FOHBC Conventions Director, Position open and looking to fill the position.
EM2_16mugX Elizabeth Meyer, FOHBC Business Manager, is a native and proud Texan living in Houston. She has a love for antiques, collectibles, and especially is passionate about her horses, and enjoys spending time with her daughter and three grandchildren. Elizabeth has worked professionally at FMG Design for the past 24+ years in various positions including project management, information technology, accounting, human resources, quality control, and now Sr. Vice President. She loves working with people, traveling with family and enjoys going to bottle shows and looking for unique small antiques and holy water bottles. She has taken on the FOHBC Business Manager position as a non-voting and compensated consultant.
Richard Kramerich, FOHBC Public Relations Director,is a native of Illinois now living in Pensacola, Florida. He graduated from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, studying journalism, radio-television and photography. Richard has worked in the printing industry since 1974. A collector for most of his life, he loves found objects, antiques and bottles. Richard wrote the Southern Region Report for the federation magazine, Bottles and Extras, from May 1998 to October 1999. He also is the vice president and newsletter editor for the Emerald Coast Bottle Collectors, in DeFuniak Springs, FL. He’s volunteered his graphic design skills to help with the Mobile Bottle Collectors show, the Olde Guys Bottle Club show in Biloxi, MS and the Emerald Coast Bottle Collectors show in DeFuniak Springs, FL. And has gathered dealer and collectors lists from the following bottle clubs: New Orleans, LA; Jackson, MS; Birmingham and Mobile, AL; DeFuniak Springs; Tallahassee; and Lake City, FL and entered those into an Excel database file that was distributed to those clubs to have a mailing list for future shows.
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Ferdinand Meyer V, FOHBC Director-at-Large, has a BFA in Fine Art and Graphic Design from the Kansas City Art Institute and School of Design. He is also a principal and founder of FMG Design, a nationally recognized design consultation firm. Ferdinand is a passionate collector of American historical glass specializing in bitters bottles, color runs, and related classic figural bottles. He also operates the Peachridge Glass website and maintains the design and brand standards for the FOHBC. Ferdinand is married to Elizabeth Requejo Meyer and lives in Houston, Texas with their daughter and three wonderful grandchildren. The Meyer family is also very involved in Quarter Horses, antiques, and early United States postage stamps. Ferdinand served for three 2-year terms as President of the FOHBC and is a director of the FOHBC Virtual Museum. He was inducted into the FOHBC Hall of Fame in 2021.
John O’Neill, FOHBC Director-at-Large, is a California native, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is the most recent president of the FOHBC and president of the San Jose Antique Bottle Collectors Association and a prior officer of the Peninsula Bottle Collectors. John has had a strong interest in bottle collecting since age ten and is currently collecting San Francisco saloon material including pumpkinseed flasks, coffin flasks, and memorabilia—all pre-prohibition. He wrote his first book on California pottery and stoneware and was a presenter on the subject at the 2016 Sacramento National Convention & Expo. He has been married to his wife, Cheri, for 38 years and has two grown children. John is the managing director for the San Francisco office of Risk Strategies Company, a Boston-based Insurance Brokerage.
Richard SiriFOHBC Director-at-Large, is known for his extensive Western bottle collections having amassed one of the most complete Western bitters bottle collections, as well as extensive collections of whiskeys, Hostetter’s Stomach Bitters, and U.S.A. Hospital Dept. bottles, among other things. He is always willing to share his knowledge on his favorite subjects and that knowledge has found a public place inside many books, articles, and exhibitions about antique bottles. He has held several offices within the Federation, most notably that as president in 2008. Richard chaired the recent FOHBC Reno 2022 National Antique Bottle Convention, co-chaired the FOHBC 2012 Reno National Antique Bottle Expo and the FOHBC 2016 Sacramento National Antique Bottle Convention & Expo. He is also a major supporter and an active member of the Northwestern Bottle Collectors Association. In 2009, Richard first brought forth the concept of developing the FOHBC Virtual Museum. He now serves on the museum Board of Directors and he, along with his wife Beverley, is a major financial contributor to the museum. Richard was inducted into the FOHBC Hall of Fame in 2018.
Henry Hecker, FOHBC Midwest Region Director, has been collecting pre-1910 Wisconsin bottles and utilitarian pottery since 1970 and is a charter member of the Milwaukee Antique Bottle & Advertising Club. Once an avid digger and lake mucker, today, he primarily searches flea markets, shows, shops, and house sales for new discoveries. A former marketing executive, Henry spends “retirement” with his wife, Diane, in Mukwonago, Wisconsin. He is a dedicated researcher of the history of his bottles and pottery, serving as program director for the Milwaukee antique bottle club and President of the Mukwonago Historical Society & Museum. He is leading an effort to expand and update the local museum and is one of the three contributors to the informational website on Wisconsin-made earthenware and stoneware, madefromclay.org, the undisputed authority on Wisconsin 19th century potters. Henry and Diane have two sons, John and Erik, who are convinced Dad is certifiably insane because of his hobby.
Charles (Charlie) Martin, Jr., FOHBC Northeast Region Directorlives in West Newbury, Massachusetts, with his wife Jane. They have three grown children from a blended family that lives in Old Lyme, Connecticut, San Diego, California, and Georgetown, Massachusetts. Charlie has been a collector his entire life with baseball cards, comics, coins, stamps, specimen seashells, and especially antique bottles. He is a past president of the Merrimack Antique Bottle Club of Massachusetts. A highlight of his tenure as president was getting Carlyn Ring to speak at a club meeting while she was still compiling her For Bitters Only book. He was fortunate to have several unlisted bitters in his collection that she did not know about. His primary focus in collecting is Clarke’s Vegetable Sherry Wine Bitters. He has been working on a run of these bottles with all sizes and variants for many years. Just when it appeared that he might complete the run of sizes and variants, Ring, Ham and Meyer issued their Bitters Bottles Supplement 2, which included two previously unknown variants! Back to the hunt. Charlie also collects all ephemeral material related to bitters products: trade cards, handbills, almanacs, labels, invoices, and letterheads, to mention a few categories. Label-only bitters are also a favorite of his collecting passion. Charlie retired from his position as Superintendent of Schools twenty years ago and notes that the issues he was dealing with back then are still the same issues his friends and colleagues are wrestling with two decades later. Charlie is assembling an Atwood’s Jaundice Bitters bottles group for his seven-year-old grandson, who lives in Georgetown, MA. He believes that those of us in the bottle collecting hobby must create an opportunity for the next generation of “guardians of the glass” to ensure our wonderful hobby survives.
Jake Smith, FOHBC Southern Region Director, lives in Talladega, Alabama and is a native of Sylacauga, Alabama. He is married to his wife, Amanda, and they have three children: Sydney, Bradlee, and Hershel. Jake has always collected something as far back as he can remember. He got into collecting bottles back in 2010 by collecting Coca-Cola bottles from his state. He is trying to get one Coca-Cola bottle from each plant that has a bottle. He also collects Talladega County bottles and related items and has what he calls a subcollection of Buffalo Rock and Mountain Dew Willy the Hillbilly bottles. Jake started the Lincoln Bottle Show in Lincoln, Alabama in 2016 and remains show chairman. He started the show to preserve the hobby of collecting and to help fellow collectors connect with each other for knowledge to be passed and collections to grow. Jake says, “Collect what you like. The great thing about bottle collecting is that there is no wrong ‘theme’ of bottles to collect.”
EricMcGuireMug_BW Eric McGuire, FOHBC Western Region Director, is a California native who has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area most of his life. He attended local schools and completed his formal education at San Francisco State University (MA 1973). Eric entered the field of environmental planning and retired from a 30-year career in domestic water supply in 2008. He began his bottle collecting interest in 1960 and along with digging and otherwise acquiring bottles, Eric has always been an avid student of all aspects of glassmaking as well as a researcher of the history of the people who produced the bottles. Beginning in the mid-1960s, his name can be found on many articles relating to bottles and glass. Eric’s primary interest has been focused on the geographical area of the Western U.S. He is a life member of the FOHBC, and lives in Petaluma, California, with his wife, Lisa.