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Canada Dry Progress A1 Cooler

June 22nd, 2009 · 21 Comments

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Progress A1 Picnic Cooler

This is a picnic cooler made by the Progress Refrigerator Company in the 1950s. It is embossed with the Canada Dry logo and this model is referred to as the Progress A1. Canada Dry is just one of the many companies Progress produced coolers for. Some of the other soda companies they made coolers for were Royal Crown, 7 Up, Dr. Pepper, Squirt and Barq’s. The cooler is made of steel with two handles that locked together for carrying the cooler. There is a bottle opener mounted on the side and a drainage spout on the front. This model was built to hold 24 bottles of soda. Collectors will be aware that A1s with the Canada Dry embossing are not that easy to find. Some years ago we restored this cooler back to its original glory, but please note we are no longer in the restoration business.

Unrestored Progress A1 Cooler

1950s Canada Dry Cooler

Dimensions: 18”L x 13”W x 19”H

This item is not for sale. We show restored items in this blog to encourage discussion, prompt questions and further the hobby of collecting and restoration. We also enjoy sharing the photos of the many items we have restored over the years.

Tags: Picnic Coolers · Restorations by Vintage Vending Inc.

21 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Edwin Meyer // Mar 24, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    I recently came across an A1 cooler. It is in a little worse shape then yours was. My question is. Where did you find the restoration parts for the cooler? I have been searching the web and have not found any place to get items like the bottle opener or drain cap. You did a very nice job on your restoration, I can only hope mine comes out looking so good. Thanks Edwin

  • 2 vintagevending // Mar 26, 2010 at 1:28 pm


    The drain cap can be found here: http://www.fun-tronicsllc.com/store.php?searchterms=progress&searchmode=any
    Good luck with your restoration!

  • 3 Maureen Mccabe // Apr 21, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    I have this canada dry cooler about same condition. My question is its value?

  • 4 vintagevending // Apr 21, 2010 at 3:30 pm


    As we have been out of the restoration business for awhile, we aren’t able to provide an estimate of value. A good thing to do is try to find a similar one on ebay or Craig’s List. Sometimes they pop up there. Good luck,

  • 5 matt // Jun 25, 2010 at 6:47 am


    i have just purchased a Progress Refrigerator Company cooler, looks exactly the same as your in the pic

    now when i opened it up, it had a little white dust in the bottom

    now i was worried this might have been the insulation between the inner and outer layers ? ? ? my concern is that it would contain asbestos ( and we know about that , thus i wouldnt want my family lunch in it )

    so when you refurbed it, did you find out what was between the inner and outer metal skins ? ? ?


  • 6 vintagevending // Jun 25, 2010 at 10:06 am

    The best we know, the insulation is fiberglass.

  • 7 brian // Aug 13, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    I have a progress cooler in very good shape except for the finish. I believe it is a coca-cola cooler because of the color, BUT there is no embossed logo. Were all coolers embossed with logos for that time period?

  • 8 carol // Sep 26, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    i have a canada dry cooler over 30 yrs. old. the top of it is actually a cushion seat. it has a metal dish inside the outside is silver with the canada dry emblem. is this worth anything?

  • 9 Annie // Oct 9, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    Hi i just found a cooler and was wondering if anyone had found one on ebay or something to know the value. I couldnt find one.

  • 10 Joshua // May 17, 2011 at 2:31 pm

    I got the Same canada dry cooler as in the pic just want it to know the value of it

  • 11 william madison // Jun 11, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    hey all, I just got this cooler from my Dad and its the coolest thing i’ve seen. I looked on ebay and there isn’t an A1 on there There is one canada dry cooler but i believe it to be a much later vintage, but still in great shape. Mine is Rusty! but still holds water and has all the equip that it came with even the tray that goes inside. ill clean it up and post it soon for all to see.
    I don’t know what it would sell for and will be looking for buyers soon, Dad is in tax trouble and needs to liquidate stuff soon. So keep me in mind if your interested.

  • 12 RON // Jun 16, 2011 at 10:29 am


  • 13 Darwin // Sep 29, 2011 at 11:44 am

    Yes, go to yahoo, type in Canada Dry or Pepse, sorry got a Brain stop on spelling, look up the model no. that is a great help. I hope you got a old tag.

  • 14 amanda // Jan 16, 2012 at 12:59 pm

    i have the same cooler that you show in the picture, im looking for a vaule on this cooler but havent been able to find anything about it, i also have the same cooler but a coke one, please if you have any info on these, it would really help, thank you

  • 15 Rita // Jul 11, 2012 at 9:07 pm

    I have a Canada Dry Progress A1 Cooler, that is in excellent shape. Could you please tell me where I could list this item for sale, or who might be interested in buying it.


  • 16 Samuel // Jul 28, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    Hi I have an antique Coca-Cola cooler and its in very rough shape. How did/ do you remove the dents and make the cooler flat?? Please somebody answer this question, because the cooler is myu senior project.

  • 17 Bob Norman // Aug 4, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Hi, I have a Progressive Coke cooler and I cannot find a gasket for the top anywhere. Can someone tell me if anyone makes these or if there is a good substitute?

  • 18 scott // Mar 14, 2013 at 3:13 am

    including value would make your site relevant. as is, it is sadly not.

  • 19 vintagevending // Mar 15, 2013 at 8:02 am

    We do not give appraisals or estimations of the value of items, since this site is here to promote dialog among collectors, to inform, and to give a forum for those that appreciate vintage machines to communicate with one another.

  • 20 john // Oct 12, 2013 at 11:02 am

    I have an old vintage Progress refrigerator cooler that I want to restore. I prefer to have it powder coated but having to bake the powder on the insulation between the layers is an issue. I am a metal fabricator but I can see this will be a tricky process disassembing it.

  • 21 john // Oct 15, 2013 at 7:01 pm

    I could also be looking for a lid of I can’t fix this one……any suggestions

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All Images are the Property of and Copyrighted to Vintage Vending Inc.