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Jump Back in Time Gilded Age (1878-1889)
 
Natchez, Miss. Store or cafe with soft drink signs.
A Coca-Cola sign hangs over a shop in Natchez, Mississippi

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The First Coca-Cola Served
May 8, 1886

By the late 1890s, Coca-Cola was one of America's most popular fountain drinks. Sales increased from one million to one hundred million between 1890 and 1900. The company began to sell syrup to individual bottling companies licensed to sell the drink. These companies added carbonated water to the syrup and bottled it. The U.S. soft drink industry still works this way today.
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