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10 water towers that look good enough to eat

By: Matt Hickman on March 26, 2015, 10:10 a.m.
Brooks Catsup Bottle Water Tower, Illinois

Photo: Tristan Denyer/Wikimedia Commons

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Brooks Catsup Bottle Water Tower, Illinois

Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002, the Brooks Catsup Bottle Water Tower is one of America’s great roadside attractions — weird, wacky and well worth the detour. Towering 170 feet over State Route 159 in the west-central Illinois burg of Collinsville, the oversized bottle was constructed in 1949 on the grounds of the Brooks Catsup bottling facility to support its fire sprinkler system. The “rich and tangy” accompaniment, once a staple in the St. Louis area, is still around but hard to find on store shelves.

In 1995, a local preservation group saved the tower from demolition, but its future is once again uncertain. The owner of the water tower, and the property it sits on, put it up for sale for $500,000 in 2014. After deploying the Wienermobile to Collinsville, Chicago-based Oscar Mayer expressed interest in purchasing the property but it’s unclear whether that too-good-to-be-true scenario will pan out.