Progressive Distributor Magazine in April of 2002
"The story of Hagerty Brothers Company is a story of a company that has adapted to changing technology and business conditions. When Saul, a young millright, moved to Peoria, he quickly built a reputation as a builder of mills and distilleries. By the late 1890's, he had built or rebuilt 19 distilleries in this central Illinois city alone."
"The company owned fine woodworking equipment including a large planer," said Susan Flora Fellerhoff, great, great granddaughter of Saul Hagerty and wife of Randy Fellerhoff, current company president. "Someone thought of using the planer to make potato chip-sized oak, then toasting them until they were charred, similar to the inside of an oak keg used for aging bourbon."
"Just one box of Shaco placed into an old barrell had the aging power to turn homemade corn liquor into bourbon.. The product proved extremely popular and sold throughout the United States, Canada and South America. Sales of Shaco helped the company survive prohibition and the early days of the Great Depression."
This reminds me of what Dave Ziegler said about Kinsey and the experimenting with wood chips in bourbon. This may have been the first instance of them in use.
Some modern versions...
"Homebrew Inn Products
Bourbon Soakers 100g,
Flavours up to 5 litres of vodka. This is by far the best Bourbon soaker we have. The aroma cannot be compared with . Enhance with your favourite Bourbon if required."
If you don't have a barrel, throw in some wood chips....