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Bright Star "D" Cell Batteries - 1964

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    Posted 4 years ago

    (35 items)

    A find within a find.
    April 11, 2018
    A bunch of old cardboard boxes full of old files were all destined for the trash. Inside one of the boxes back in the corner in the dark under all the other boxes I discovered an old leather case. Inside that case, a camera from the 1930's and accessories. Inside the flash unit, the Jacobson Synchronizer seen in the picture, were two Bright Star "D" cell Flash batteries.

    Relieved they hadn't leaked and destroyed the flash unit I became curious as to why they didn't leak. Putting them in a multimeter showed they still had a charge. One 0.85 volts, the other 0.57 volts.
    Date code showed January of 1964 as the manufacture date. Making these batteries 54 years old... and still carried a charge!

    Amazed, I did some research on Bright Star batteries...

    The Bright Star Battery company started in the late 1930's in New Jersey, (but may have started earlier in NYC according to a legal tax document I found).

    It was started by a Russian immigrant to the United States who worked as an employee in a battery manufacturing company prior. He came up with some improvements to the battery and started making them on his own in his garage or basement by hand. Rumor has it naming the company after Bright Street on which he lived, in combination with Star because his batteries lit lights up like a star. Or something along those lines.

    Bright Star batteries became one of the largest USA producers of batteries.

    In 2018 they no longer manufacture batteries but continue to manufacture flashlights in Pennsylvania under the company name Koehler Bright Star LLC.

    So I contacted them of my discovery.

    The current President of the company contacted me back and...

    In short, the batteries are now on their way to be part of a Bright Star historical showcase.

    Which is pretty cool... :-)

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    1. purvis purvis, 4 years ago
      Great story and thanks for sharing your story .
    2. mrfreedman, 2 years ago
      Awesome find! I'm actually the great-grandson of one of the founders of Bright Star, would you be able to tell me more about how you got in touch with Koehler Bright Star and if you know more about the showcase?
    3. ChaseCan ChaseCan, 2 years ago
      MrFreedman, rather simple to contact them. Just emailed them and spoke with them on the phone.
      Sorry, I don't know anything more about the display. I don't live there nor ever visited so I've never seen it.

      I'm sure if you contact them they can tell you more.


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