header image 2

Looking for Out of This World Retro Gifts, Kitsch, Signs & Furniture. Visit Retroplanet.com

Squirt Progress A1 Picnic Cooler

July 31st, 2009 · 26 Comments

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

Progress A1 Picnic Cooler

This is a 1950s picnic cooler made by the Progress Refrigerator Company for the makers of Squirt soda. This Progress A1 picnic cooler was made of steel with a galvanized liner. They originally came with a sandwich tray, but today it is hard to find examples with these intact. Squirt is one of the many soda companies Progress produced coolers for. They also manufactured the A1 cooler for the makers of Canada Dry, Royal Crown, 7 Up, Dr. Pepper and Barq’s. Some of the cooler’s features are two handles that lock together for carrying and a side-mounted bottle opener. There’s also a handy drainage spout positioned on the front for dispensing the water once the ice has melted. This model was able to hold up to 24 bottles of soda in addition to the food that would have been placed on the sandwich tray above, keeping is nice and dry.

1950s Squirt Soda Bottle Cooler

Dimensions: 18”L x 13”W x 19”H
Weight: 33 lbs.
Produced: Late 1940s to early 1950s

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. · Soda Coolers

26 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Lacey // Aug 10, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    How much would a drain cap for one of these coolers cost? Because My dad aquired a cooler that has sandwhich tray intact. its in great shape and we would like to buy the little drain cap. If you have any info on where we could find one that would be great!! Thank you.

  • 2 Dave // Aug 28, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    I have the same question as Lacey. Where can you get the drain caps for the old progress type picnic coolers? Thanx

  • 3 vintagevending // Aug 31, 2009 at 10:56 am

    Dave and Lacey,

    fun-tronicsllc.com has the drain caps and nipples for the Progress type coolers. Just do a search for “drain cap” on their website and scroll down on the page. you can also call them at (217) 857-1759.

  • 4 John // Sep 3, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    I have an A1 7up cooler. Where can I find a seal for the cooler lid?

  • 5 michael // Oct 17, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    I have a Kerns beverage cooler with a deer head logo any one interested

  • 6 michael // Oct 21, 2009 at 9:30 am

    does Kerns still exist ?

  • 7 paul // Oct 25, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    I have A red vintage cooler with an eskimo on it and it reads COOLER CHEST with an accent mark over the E in cooler.Bottle opener on the side.I can’t find any MFG marks.Could this be A Progress? Thanks

  • 8 angie // Dec 19, 2009 at 3:43 am

    I have an aluminum coca cola cooler with lid and lock handles, lock is not working, wish to sell. Also have a stainless steel minnow bucket both very old and in fairly good shape, cooler does not leak and has a drain spout at the bottom, padded lid in red so it can be sat on.

  • 9 Keith // Dec 20, 2009 at 12:48 am

    I am looking for the cooler codes for the action and progress coolers. Do you know where I might get the codes?? I\

  • 10 vintagevending // Dec 21, 2009 at 11:36 am


    We do not have that information. Can anyone else help? Please comment.

  • 11 Keith // Jan 29, 2010 at 9:41 pm

    Any help in locating the paint codes for the various coolers….I have DrPepper, 7up, Pepsi Blue and Silver….I am wishing to restore the coolers and need help in the paint codes????

  • 12 Joel // Feb 22, 2010 at 7:18 pm

    I have a Squirt cooler just like the one above. How much would it cost to have it restored. Every thing is there just rusty. Thanks for the help.

  • 13 vintagevending // Feb 23, 2010 at 11:25 am


    We are not able to give quotes on cost of restoring. If anyone else can help, please comment.

  • 14 Denise // Mar 29, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    I also am looking for the lid seal for the progress picnic cooler. Currently, i’m using a piece of window insulation. Any advice?

  • 15 John // Apr 14, 2010 at 12:53 am

    Hello, I have a green 7up cooler that looks simular to the A1 but has some subtle differances, I have only seen one example on the internet, Who, or where can I go to find out more info, on its worth and or rarity? thanks John

  • 16 vintagevending // Apr 14, 2010 at 8:40 am


    Here is a site with some more information” http://www.busandcamper.com/shop/7up-cooler.html You can also check ebay or Craig’s List to see if anyone has listed the item.

  • 17 CAROL // May 8, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    any idea what it is worth?

  • 18 bobby // Jun 9, 2010 at 11:09 am

    I bought a progress cooler a couple days ago it’s still in orginal box no nane on cooler,the box says progress refrigerator co. louisville,ky. model A40 any idea when it was made?

  • 19 vintagevending // Jun 11, 2010 at 2:13 pm


    I don’t know that information, but try posting your question on this forum http://soda-machines.com/discussions/index.php/board,16.0.html

  • 20 Michael // Jul 23, 2012 at 7:34 pm

    I have a red squirt cooler like the one pictured above. I always thought it was a coke cooler because of the color. Were there other squirt cooler colors or was this one repainted?

  • 21 vintagevending // Jul 24, 2012 at 8:14 am

    The picnic cooler pictured here is a Squirt cooler. If your cooler is red, it wasn’t made for Squirt. The Progress Refrigerator Company made A1 coolers for many other soda companies as well, such as Royal Crown, 7 Up, Dr. Pepper, Canada Dry and Barq’s Your cooler is probably a look alike Standard cooler made by Acton for Coca-Cola. Is it embossed with the manufacturer’s name?

  • 22 Sue // Aug 16, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    I have a squirt cooler with a leather handle on the lid. It appears to be original to the piece. Can anyone tell me if it is?

  • 23 vintagevending // Aug 17, 2012 at 11:34 am

    Progress A1 coolers were not made with leather handles, but rather, of all-steel construction. Unfortunately, a leather handle would not be original to the cooler.

  • 24 Sue // Aug 19, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    Thanks very much for the info!

  • 25 Linda A // Nov 2, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    We have this cooler. Has lunch meat tray, no rust, some scratches, is complete. It also has bottle opener on it along with the drain plug intact. Would anyone know what its value?

  • 26 jim gonzalez // Dec 24, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    Hi have an original squirt cooler, intact. I haven’t looked at it in years, may have a dent, not sure. It was my father’s not sure how he got it, so I’ve had it for 60 years! Not looking to sell it, just wondering what it’s worth!

Leave a Comment

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