Innovation has run in the blood of David Michael owners since 1896 – but did you know that whiskey-making is also burrowed in their DNA? In 1854 Isaac Rosskam partnered with Henry Gerstley and incorporated a liquor company in Addison, NY that would open one year later. In 1865, Rosskam, Gerstley & Co. moved to Philadelphia. Through the years, the company launched dozens of successful brands, including American Rye, Top of the Morning and R.G. & Co. Special Reserve. However, Rosskam, Gerstley & Co.’s flagship brand was always Old Saratoga Whiskey, often lovingly referred to as just Saratoga.
Three of Isaac Rosskam’s great great grandsons are currently at the helm of the daily operations here at David Michael & Co., keeping alive the long lineage of entrepreneurial innovators in the Rosskam family. Isaac is great great grandfather of current President and COO Skip Rosskam, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing Steve Rosskam and Executive Vice President of Operations George Rosskam.
As Rosskam, Gerstley & Co. grew and prospered, additional offices were opened in the 1870’s and 80’s in Cleveland, Chicago and New York City. Meanwhile in Philadelphia, where distillers and liquor wholesalers were a dime a dozen at the time, the company was determined to find a way to make their product stand apart from the many other choices. And so was born the line-up of Rosskam, Gerstley & Co. giveaway and promotional items that are still considered collectibles today. Check out these gems:
Lithographed serving tray of dogs playing poker: