Beer In Ads #2149: Sid Luckman For Pabst


Saturday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Sid Luckman. He “was an American football quarterback for the Chicago Bears of the National Football League (NFL) from 1939 through 1950. During his twelve seasons with the Bears he led them to four NFL championships. Luckman was the first modern T-formation quarterback and is considered the greatest long range passer of his time.”

In the ad, done when was still an active player, though he would retire the following year, Sid sits in his home, surrounded by a few of his trophies. He holds a glass of beer, but there are two bottles of Pabst in the tray next to him. Either he was a prodigious drinker, or perhaps there’s someone else there in the room with him.

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Historic Beer Birthday: Matthew Nunan

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Today is actually the day that Matthew Nunan passed away, January 7, 1916, and was born in 1834, or possibly 1836, or maybe even 1828, but the exact date or even month is unknown. There are even some sources that give his date of death as January 13. He was born in Limerick, Ireland, and emigrated to the U.S. when he was fourteen, settling in California in 1855. Lured there by dreams of striking it rich in the goldmines, he soon tried of mining, and first opened a grocery store in San Francisco, but eventually bought the Mission Street Brewery. When they moved the brewery and built a larger one, they renamed it the Hibernia Brewery. Matthew Nunan also served two terms as Sheriff of San Francisco, 1876-1877 and 1878-1879.

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Gary Flynn has a more thorough Biography of Matthew J. Numan at her terrific Brewery Gems website. He also has a lengthy history of the Mission Street Brewery (1860-1867) and [its] successor The Hibernia Brewery (1867-1920).

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Historic Beer Birthday: John G. Schemm

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Today is the birthday of John G. Schemm (January 7, 1834-March 1899). He was born in Germany, but when he was 22, in 1852, he and his father moved to the U.S., settling on a farm near Detroit. Unfortunately, after a short time, John’s Dad passed away, and he moved to Saginaw, Michigan in 1864. With business partner Christian Grueler, he started a brewery, the Schemm & Gruhler Brewery, in 1866. Three years later, Gruhler passed away and he brought on another partner, renaming the brewery the Schemm & Schoenheit Brewery in 1874. But by 1881, he bought him out, and it became the John G. Schemm Brewery. When he passed away, his son George C. Schemm took over, and incorporated it in 1899 as the J. G. Schemm Brewing Co. Inc. It closed in 1919 due to prohibition, and was sold to another business who tried reopening it as the Schemm Brewing Co. Inc., but it closed for good in 1938. While I found some information on the brewery, there was very little about Schemm himself, not even a picture of him.

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This account of the brewery is from the “Industries of the Saginaws: Historical, Descriptive and Statistical,” by John W. Leonard, published in 1887.

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This short account is from “100 Years of Brewing,” published in 1903.

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Beer Birthday: Harry Schuhmacher

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Today is Harry Schuhmacher’s 48th birthday. Harry covers the business side of beer news at his wonderful Beer Business Daily. Our paths cross only occasionally, but I had the pleasure of getting to know Harry better during a press junket to Bavaria several years ago, and he’s one of the warmest, thoughtful and funniest people I’ve met. And he’s a beertard, too. You can also read his occasional personal ramblings at Thanks For Drinking Beer, essays from which is also available as a book, too. Join me in wishing Harry a very happy birthday.

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With fellow beer writer Horst Dornbusch in Bamberg.

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Harry and me enjoying a meal in the Hallertau region of Bavaria.

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Harry with a server at his favorite sushi restaurant, presumably in his native San Antonio, Texas, who apparently bought and enjoyed his collection of essays.

Historic Beer Birthday: John Kress

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Today is the birthday of John Kress (January 7, 1825-April 16, 1877). He was born in Hessen, which today is part of Germany. He trained as both a cooper and a brewer, before emigrating to New York in 1850. He worked at the Jacob Ahles Brewery (on 207-224 East 54th, between 2nd & 3rd) for three years, when he and a partner bought it, renaming it the John Kress & Christian Schaefer Brewery. After ten years it became the John Kress Brewery and later the John Kress Brewing Co., though no word what happened to Schaefer. It closed in 1911. This was the only picture of John Kress I could find.

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John Kress also produced bottled beer, and the bottles are now very collectible. Some of the beers they produced included Extra Lager Bier, Karthauser Beer, La Paloma, Lager Beer, and Wiener Beer, all brewed at least between 1884 and 1904.

I was also able to find some of the Preferred Stock in the brewery.

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And this was a promotional mug, apparently.

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But by far most of the information I could find on John Kress was this biography from the

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