A fascinating character was Dr. Perrier. As well as his professional activities, he was also involved in politics. Born into a farming family, Louis Perrier obtained a bachelor’s degree in 1855, then travelled to Montpellier to study medicine. In 1862, after completing his studies, he set up practice in Nîmes. In 1870, France was shaken by the events of the Commune. Louis Perrier discovered politics and was elected councillor at large, though he still kept up his medical practice. While overseeing the Euzet-les-Bains spa operations, Dr. Perrier wrote many articles on the virtues of thermal water and applied for a variety of patents.
In 1898, the Établissement Thermal de Vergèze became the Société des Eaux Minérales, Boissons et Produits Hygiéniques de Vergèze. The company set itself a tremendous challenge: selling water to the French at a time when wine, beer and absinthe weremore the norm.
From that point on, Dr. Perrier decided to devote himself entirely to the spring and to perfecting the bottling operation. The physician spent a lot of time developing a glass bottle with a hermetically sealed cap, so he could package and ship water that contained three times its volume in carbonation.
Perrier’s dream was to conquer the French market. Searching for funding, he encountered St. John Harmsworth. © 2006 Perrier