Patent No. 440916A: Bottle Filling Machine

Today in 1890, US Patent 440916 A was issued, an invention of William R. Dannals, for his “Bottle Filling Machine.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

My invention relates to that class of bottle filling machines in which a series of bottles are filled at one time, my invention comprising certain details in construction of the machine, as fully described and claimed hereinafter, with a view of simplifying said construction and insuring a rapid and accurate filling of the bottles.


Historic Beer Birthday: Charles Buxton

Today is the birthday of Charles Buxton (November 18, 1823-August 10, 1871). He “was an English brewer, philanthropist, writer and member of Parliament. Buxton was born in Cobham, Surrey, the third son of Sir Thomas Buxton, 1st Baronet, a notable brewer, MP and social reformer, and followed in his father’s footsteps, becoming a partner in the brewery of Truman, Hanbury, Buxton, & Co in Brick Lane, Spitalfields, London, and then an MP. He served as Liberal MP for Newport, Isle of Wight (1857–1859), Maidstone (1859–1865) and East Surrey (1865–1871). His son Sydney Buxton was also an MP and governor of South Africa.”

This is the image that comes up for Charles Buxton when you do a Google search, but I can’t confirm that it’s the same person.

Buxton’s father, Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton, 1st Baronet, usually known as just Fowell Buxton, was a partner in Truman’s Brewery, which had been around since 1666 as the Black Eagle Brewery.

The brewery on Brick Lane in London.

The original brewery was probably established by the Bucknall family, who leased the site in the seventeenth century. The site’s first associations with brewing can be traced back to 1666 when a Joseph Truman is recorded as joining William Bucknall’s Brewhouse in Brick Lane. Part of the site was located on Black Eagle Street, hence the brewery’s name. Truman appears to have acquired the lease of the brewery in 1679, upon the death of William Bucknell. Through the Truman family’s efforts – not least those of Sir Benjamin Truman (who joined the firm in 1722) – the business expanded rapidly over the following 200 years. By 1748 the Black Eagle Brewery was the third largest brewery in London, and likely the world, with 40,000 barrels produced annually.

In the mid-18th century Huguenot immigrants introduced a new beverage flavoured with hops, which proved very popular. Initially, Truman’s imported hops from Belgium, but Kent farmers were soon encouraged to grow hops to help the brewery meet growing demand.

Sir Benjamin died in March 1780 and, without a son to take on the business, it passed to his grandsons. In 1789, the brewery was taken over by Sampson Hanbury (Hanbury had been a partner since 1780; the Truman family became ‘sleeping partners’). Hanbury’s nephew, Thomas Fowell Buxton, joined the company in 1808, improved the brewing process, converted the works to steam power and, with the rapid expansion and improvement of Britain’s road and rail transport networks, the Black Eagle label soon became famous across Britain (by 1835, when Buxton took over the business upon Hanbury’s death, the brewery was producing some 200,000 barrels (32,000 m3) of porter a year).

The Brick Lane brewery – now known as Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co – took on new partners in 1816, the Pryor brothers (the company’s owners were renowned for their good treatment of their workers – providing free schooling – and for their support of abolitionism). By 1853 the brewery was the largest in the world, producing 400,000 barrels of beer each year, with a site covering six acres.

However, the company also faced competition from breweries based outside London – notably in Burton upon Trent, where the water was particularly suitable for brewing – and in 1873 the company acquired a brewery (Phillips) in Burton and began to build a major new brewery, named the Black Eagle after the original London site.

In 1888, Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co became a public company with shareholders, but the balance of production was now shifting to Burton. The Brick Lane facility remained active through a take-over by the Grand Metropolitan Group in 1971 and a merger with Watney Mann in 1972, but it was in terminal decline. It eventually closed in 1989.


Glenn Payne wrote the Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co. entry for the Oxford Companion to Beer:

Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co. was a venerable British brewery that operated for more than 3 centuries before it closed its doors in 1988. The original brewery was built on Lolsworth Field, Spitalhope, London, by Thomas Bucknall in 1669. He was soon joined by Joseph Truman, who became brewery manager in 1694. Joseph Truman brought Joseph Truman Jr into the company in 1716 and his executor, Sir Benjamin Truman, who took ownership of the business in 1722. Two years later a new brewery, The Black Eagle, was built on nearby Brick Lane, which grew to become Britain’s second largest brewery, employing some 1,000 people. Sir Benjamin died in 1780 without a direct male heir and left the brewery to his grandsons. In the same year, Sampson Hanbury became a partner and took over control in 1789. His nephew, Thomas Fowler Buxton, joined in 1808. He improved the brewing process by adopting innovations in brewing technology brought about by the Industrial Revolution. Outside his activities in the brewery, Buxton was a renowned philanthropist, and he was elected a member of Parliament in 1818. He was associated with William Wilberforce, a leader in the fight to end the British slave trade. By the time of his death in 1845, the brewery produced about 305,000 hl of porter annually. The brewery is even mentioned in Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield (1850). Seizing upon the growing influence of Burton as a brewing center in the 19th century, the company acquired the Phillips brewery there in 1887 and 2 years later became a public company. But its fortunes declined with the shift in popular taste away from porter toward pale ale near the end of the 19th century. In 1971, the brewery was acquired by the Grand Metropolitan Group, which, in turn, was merged into Watney Mann 1 year later. Thomas, Hanbury, and Buxton ceased production in 1988 but its brewery still stands on its site in Brick Lane, London, where it has been redeveloped into a complex of residential housing, offices, restaurants, galleries, and shops.


They also later built a Black Eagle Brewery in Burton. As you’d expect, Martyn Cornell has an amazingly thorough account of Trumans, which he refers to as When Brick Lane was home to the biggest brewery in the world.



Benefit For Pete’s Sake At Spartan Stadium In San Jose

spartans tied-house
You may not have heard the name of Peter Cogan. He’s not a household name, not a rock star brewer and does not make a point of making sure people know who he is. He just does his job, and makes things happen. Born in England, Peter has been helping promote the beer scene in the South Bay as long as anybody can remember and has been working for Hermitage Brewing and the Tied House in Mountain View since 1990. He also helped launch the beerfest there, one of the biggest and most important early Bay Area beer festivals.

Peter Cogan, from the Tied House
Peter Cogan in 2009.

So what does that have to do with a beer festival on November 19 called “For Pete’s Sake?” Well, recently Peter was diagnosed with cancer, specifically lymphoma, and is undergoing chemotherapy treatment to beat back his cancer. For Pete’s Sake is a benefit to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), and also for Peter. Take my word for it, Peter is a great person and if there’s any stranger you help this year, let it be him. But besides a great cause, it should be a great time, too.

Microsoft Word - FB16, Craft Beer Fest, Web Page Layout.docx

Your ticket includes admission to see the San Jose Spartans play Air Force in college football, plus a beer festival with unlimited samples from at least twenty local breweries. This all takes place on Saturday, November 19, 2016 at Spartan Stadium, located at 1257 South 7th Street, CEFCU Stadium, in San Jose. The brewfest starts and 2:30 PM and lasts for four hours, until 6:30 PM. Then at 7:30 PM, the game kicks off, and you’ll have a seat on the 50 to 30 yard line. Tickets are $40 in advance, and $50 on the day of the event. Tickets are available online. Use the promo code “FORPETESSAKE2016.” Visit the For Pete’s Sake Brewfest webpage for all of the details.

So even if you’ve never met Peter, if you’ve ever enjoyed a craft beer in the Bay Area, you probably owe him at least a small debt of gratitude. And what better way to thank him then to attend a beer festival and drink some more beer and have a great time. Is that too much to ask? Let’s all help Peter beat cancer.

Peter, with Steve Donohue, now with Santa Clara Valley Brewing, at the 21st Celebrator Anniversary Party.

Patent No. 4880643A: Beer And Other Beverages And Their Manufacture

Today in 1989, US Patent 4880643 A was issued, an invention of Charles W. Bamforth and Roy Cope, assigned to Bass Public Limited Company, for his “Beer and Other Beverages and Their Manufacture.” Here’s the Abstract:

Proteinaceous material is added to beer or other beverages. In beer and those other beverages on which a head can be formed it helps to improve the head, while in beverages not normally forming a head it can enable a head to be formed. Proteins extracted from albumen may be employed or whole albumen may be used. To avoid any tendency to haze-formation, particularly on pasteurization, protein fragments may be used. These can be formed by hydrolyzing proteins such as albumen proteins. An alternative method is to use alkylated proteins. Alkylated protein fragments are particularly satisfactory. The alkyl radicals may contain from four to twenty carbon atoms, preferred radicals containing six carbon atoms.


While the title is somewhat vague, it’s about beer foam. Here’s part of the description:

This invention relates to beer and other beverages and to their manufacture. In particular the invention is concerned with the incorporation into a beverage of an additive enabling the beverage to have a head formed on it or to improve the quality of the head that can be formed on it.

The invention is primarily applicable to beer, and the term beer is used herein to designate generally any of a variety of alcoholic beverages made by the fermentation of hopped malt wort; it thus includes within its scope ales, lagers and stouts. Beer itself is normally dispensed with a head, but there are also other beer-like beverages that are normally dispensed with a head and to which the invention is also particularly applicable, these including beverages which include little or no alcohol but otherwise resemble beer quite closely.

In addition to such beer-like beverages the invention may be applied both to other beverages which are customarily dispensed with a head and to beverages which have not hitherto been customarily dispensed with a head. These latter beverages may include wines, `made wines`, fortified wines and spirits. The invention is particularly applicable to carbonated beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, as the release of gas which tends to occur as the beverage is dispensed encourages a tendency to head-formation.

The foam or head that is normally present on a glass of beer is an important feature of the beer, and it has been found that many consumers, when judging the quality of a beer, consider that for a beer to have a head of good quality is one of the most important factors in that beer’s favour. Much the same is also true of other beverages on which a head is formed. It is considered that a head is of good quality if it has a number of attributes, among which are stability, the ability to form `lacing`, that is a lace-like pattern of bubbles left on the side of the glass after the liquid beer or other beverage has been wholly or largely consumed, and a good appearance, that is a good colour (usually a white colour) and a preponderance of small bubbles of substantially uniform size.

The nature of the head on a glass of beer or other beverage depends principally on two factors, one being the constitution or composition of the beverage itself and the other being the way in which the beverage is dispensed. At least inasfar as its application to beer is concerned, the present invention is primarily concerned with the former of those factors.

From a first aspect the present invention consists in a method of modifying or improving beer or other beverage, which method comprises the step of incorporating in the beverage concerned an additive enabling the beverage to have a head formed on it or to improve the quality of the head that can be formed on it, the additive comprising proteinaceous material.

The amount of additive required to improve the beverage can readily be determined by experiment. The characteristics of the head which tend to be particularly improved by the addition of the additive are the stability of the head, the whiteness of the head and the ability to form lacing. If the proportion of the additive in the beverage is further increased the beverage may become such that a head formed on it becomes excessively stiff, firm and stable.

The proteinaceous material of the additive may comprise at least one protein.

The chemical and physical analysis of beer has shown that certain constituents have a profound effect on the type of head that can be formed on beer, and in particular has shown that the presence of certain types of proteins, particularly those that are hydrophobic and are of a relatively large size, can lead to the formation of an improved head. It would be possible to improve the head-forming properties of beer by extracting suitable proteins from barley or malt and adding them to the ingredients normally used during the manufacture of the beer in order that the resultant beer should contain an increased proportion of the proteins concerned. Such a process of extraction and addition would, however, be relatively complicated and expensive and would therefore be unlikely to be commercially practicable.

It is therefore preferred to use an additive in which the protein or each protein is of a kind not otherwise present in the beverage concerned. The additive preferably comprises albumen, i.e. white of egg. Albumen, of a quality and purity suitable for its incorporation in foodstuffs, is a commercially available product that is relatively inexpensive and can be used, without further treatment, in carrying out the present invention. Nevertheless, commercially available albumen usually if not always contains some materials that are insoluble in water, and it is preferred to extract those before the remaining material, or part of the remaining material, is incorporated in the beverage. The insoluble components can be removed by filtration or by a process in which the albumen is centrifuged.

The additive is preferably formed as an aqueous solution, and that solution may also contain a minor addition of ethyl alcohol.


Patent No. 4622224A: Preparation Of Wort Extracts

Today in 1986, US Patent 4622224 A was issued, an invention of Joseph L. Owades, for his “Preparation Of Wort Extracts.” This appears to be an earlier patent than his “Preparation Of Wort Extracts” that was patented two years later, in 1988. Joe is most well-known for having invented low-calorie light beer. Here’s the Abstract:

A method for producing a wort containing a reduced level of fermentable sugars is described. The method consists of providing a warm aqueous suspension of ground malt, and adding the warm suspension to a boiling aqueous suspension of cereal adjuncts while avoiding temperatures between about 52° and 72° C. The resulting wort is useful for producing a beer with a lower-than-normal alcohol content, or a malt beverage lacking sweetness usually associated with malt beverages.


Patent No. 20110274785A1: Method And System For Producing A Malt Beverage Having A High Degree Of Fermentation

Today in 2011, US Patent 20110274785 A1 was issued, an invention of Bert Boyce, C. James Koch, David Grinnell, and Martin Zarnkow, assigned to the Boston Beer Corporation, for their “Method and System for Producing a Malt Beverage Having a High Degree of Fermentation.” Here’s the Abstract:

Exemplary embodiments of a brewing method and system are provided, where a mixture comprising water and milled malt are mixed to produce a primary mash, and wort is produced from the primary mash. A supernatant liquid is obtained comprising active enzymes from a secondary mash, and the supernatant liquid is added from the secondary mash to the wort, and/or the supernatant liquid can be added to fermented wort after yeast is added to the wort.


Patent No. 169830A: Improvement In Treating Beer

Today in 1875, US Patent 169830 A was issued, an invention of Friedrich C. Mussgiller and Robert W. Schneider, for their “Improvement In Treating Beer and Other Liquids.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

have invented a new and useful Improvement in Treating Beer and other Liquids, which improvement is fully set forth in the following specification:

This invention consists in treating beer and other liquids of a similar nature with lumps of bicarbonate of soda, or other alkali, said lumps being compacted by means of a suitable cement, so that their specific gravity exceeds that of the liquid to be treated, and that, when one or more such lumps are dropped into the liquid, they sink down to the bottom of the vessel containing the liquid, and that the carbonic acid evolved from said lumps is compelled to permeate the body of the liquid, and at the same time, by forming said lumps of suitable sizes, the quantity of alkaline matter introduced into a certain quantity of liquid can be easily controlled. Together with the alkaline lumps, may be used lumps of tartaric or other suitable acid, compacted in the same manner as the alkaline lumps, so that the amount of carbonic acid evolved from said alkaline lumps can be easily kept under control.

It is a common practice with brewers, and others, to use bicarbonate of soda, either alone or together with tartaric acid, in the manufacture of beer, sparkling wines, and other effervescent liquids, for the purpose of increasing the life of such liquids.

The mode of applying such article or articles-by brewers, for instance is to put about one ounce of the bicarbonate of soda to each quarter barrel with a table-spoon, the bicarbonate employed being in the form of a powder.

It is obvious that this way of operating must produce a great many irregularities as to the taste and reaction of the beer on the human body. The addition of too much bicarbonate of soda will impart to the beer an in the following specific alkaline taste; too little will leave it acid.

Furthermore, the alkaline powder, on being thrown into a barrel of beer, will float on the surface of the liquid, and immediately evolve carbonic acid, a large portion of which is lost, together With the beer which is thrown out by the action of the acid, before the barrel can be closed by a bung. Besides this, the operation of filling barrels is carried on in a great hurry, and a large quantity of the soda handled with a spoon is spilled over the barrel and wasted.

If the brewers wish their beer to contain a large quantity of tartaric acid, they throw into each barrel a few crystals of tartaric acid in addition to an increased quantity of bicarbonate of soda. The result of this operation is that each barrel has different properties, there being no precaution taken to control the quantities of soda and of acid.

These disadvantages we have obviated by preparing both the alkali and the acid in solid lumps of greater specific gravity than that of the liquid in which they are to be used, and of different specific sizes. This object We obtain by mixing the powdered alkali or acid with a suitable cement, such as a solution of dextrine, and then compressing the same in molds of suitable size and shape.

The advantage of using the alkali or acid in this shape is perceptible at once. The lumps of alkali or acid being in compact form when dropped into a barrel filled with beer, ale, or other liquid, will sink to the bottom, and the carbonic acid evolved from them is forced to stay in the liquid. The barrel can be easily closed by a bung without losing a. particle of carbonic acid, or of beer, and the alkali and acid can be introduced into the barrel without any waste. Besides this, the weight or size of our lumps is so gaged that each barrel Will receive the exact quantity of alkali and of acid required, and that the liquid in a number of barrels, after having been treated with the alkali and acid, will be of uniform quality.


Patent No. 249332A: Mixture Or Grist For Brewing Purposes

Today in 1881, US Patent 249332 A was issued, an invention of Francis J. Geis, for his “Mixture or Grist for Brewing Purposes.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

My invention consists in a mixture or grist for brewing malt-liquors, composed of malt and cereals or grain having the cellulose or integument and germ or heart removed, the cereals or grain constituting from about twenty-five to fifty per centum, by weight, of the said mixture or grist.The cereals or grains thus treated have the oily and other objectionable matter removed, but contain the maximum amount of starch and the necessary albumenoids and gluten.

In carrying out my invention I prefer to remove the cellulose or integument and germ or heart of the cereals or grain by means of mechanism which is another invention of mine, and for which I intend to apply for Letters of Patent.

Before brewing I substitute for preferably from twenty-five to fifty per centum of the weight of malt ordinarily employed to produce a given quantity of the beverage alike weight of the prepared cereals or grain, and mix the two to form a grist. I then subject the combined mass of malt and cereals or grain to treatment by any suitable one of the usual methods employed in the manufacture of lager-beer, beer, ale, porter, or other malt-liquor, according as I desire to produce either of those beverages. I have found that one hundred pounds of the prepared cereals or grain will equal one hundred and thirty-six pounds of malt in extractor wort (the liquor that runs or is produced before fermentation) for the beverage, and as the prepared cereals or grain are much the cheaper,it is obvious that by means of employing this substitute I very materially cheapen the cost of the beverage. A larger and better quality of yeast of a uniform and vigorous character also results from the use of the prepared cereals or grain.


Session #117: Predicting The Future Of Beer

The 117th Session, is hosted this month by Csaba Babak, who writes the British beer blog Beer Means Business. For his topic, he’s chosen More, More, More, by which he’s asking us all to “paint a collective picture of what the future related to beer will be like.”

Here’s his full description of the topic:

I have always been obsessed with asking what happens next or what is still ahead instead of simply embracing what is in the present. Ever since I heard about Beer Blogging Fridays, I have been toying with the idea of hosting a Session to paint a collective picture of what the future related to beer will be like.

This month, Beer Means Business has the honour to host The Session and to make this happen. The final picture of Beer Future will be based on what you think we will see MORE of.

Over the last 10 years, numerous topics have been presented and the bloggers who discussed them expressed a rich diversity of perspectives or specific areas of interest. Therefore, I refrain from giving you further ideas or examples. There are no limits in time, space or nature either. I would like you to let your imagination free, and capture ONE thing you think we will see MORE of with an explanation of the idea.


So this month’s Session will be short, both by necessity and because I think the answer to this month’s question has a relatively short answer.


So, looking into my crystal ball, I have two observations.

1. Predictions are a fool’s errand. None of us can really say what the future will hold. Oh, we can make educated guesses, even back them up with charts, history or trend indicators. And I’ll even admit it can be fun to try. But in the end, the future rarely ever looks anything close to what think it will. To wit: where is my flying car that folds into a briefcase? A great quote that illustrates how off predictions can be comes from Joe Owades. Owades, in addition to creating low-calorie diet beer (a.k.a. light beer), helped several early small brewers with their recipes. In April of 1987 he said. “No microbrewer in his right mind should make wheat beer. Five years from now it will be dead (as a commercial product).” Wheat beers of all kinds seem to be doing very nicely, thank you very much. Though not beer-related, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates once quipped that “no one will ever need more than 64K RAM.” And these were both smart people who were well-respected members of their industries, knew a lot about their subject matter, yet failed utterly to grasp where the future was heading. I also happen to think (a hunch really) that even most predictions that turned out to be correct were the result of blind luck. So lots of predictions continue to fail, and will continue to fail, and maybe a few will turn out to be correct, but not enough to know who you should listen to and who to ignore. So I think it’s best to ignore them all and follow what you personally like, what speaks to you. At least that way you’ll be happy. There is, however, one thing I believe I can safely predict for the near future, and even the distant future. Then again, maybe I’m wrong.

2. People will still be drinking beer, and with a little luck, more of it will be beer with flavor.


Historic Beer Birthday: Benjamin Lee Guinness, 1st Baronet

Today is the birthday of Benjamin Lee Guinness, 1st Baronet (November 1, 1798–May 19, 1868). He was the grandson of Arthur Guinness (1725–1803), “who had bought the St. James’s Gate Brewery in 1759. He joined his father in the business in his late teens, without attending university, and from 1839 he took sole control within the family. From 1855, when his father died, Guinness had become the richest man in Ireland, having built up a huge export trade and by continually enlarging his brewery.”


In 1851 he was elected the first Lord Mayor of Dublin under the reformed corporation.

In 1863 he was made an honorary LL.D. (Doctor of Laws) by Trinity College Dublin, and on 15 April 1867 was created a baronet by patent, in addition to which, on 18 May 1867, by royal licence, he had a grant of supporters to his family arms.

Guinness was elected to the House of Commons in 1865 as a Conservative representative for Dublin City, serving until his death. His party’s leader was Lord Derby. Previously he had supported the Liberal Lord Palmerston, but in the 1860s the Liberals proposed higher taxation on drinks such as beer. Before 1865 the Irish Conservative Party did not entirely support British conservative policy, but did so after the Irish Church Act 1869. The government’s most notable reform was the Reform Act 1867 that expanded the franchise.

From 1860 to 1865, he undertook at his own expense, and without hiring an architect, the restoration of the city’s St Patrick’s Cathedral, an enterprise that cost him over £150,000. In 1865 the building was restored to the dean and chapter, and reopened for services on 24 February. The citizens of Dublin and the dean and chapter of St. Patrick’s presented him with addresses on 31 December 1865, expressive of their gratitude for what he had done for the city. The addresses were in two volumes, which were afterwards exhibited at the Paris Exhibition.

In recognition of his generosity, he was made a baronet in 1867. He was one of the ecclesiastical commissioners for Ireland, a governor of Simpson’s Hospital, and vice-chairman of the Dublin Exhibition Palace. He died the following year at his Park Lane London home. At the time of his death he was engaged in the restoration of Archbishop Marsh’s public library, a building which adjoins St. Patrick’s Cathedral, which was finished by his son Arthur.

He showed his practical interest in Irish archæology by carefully preserving the antiquarian remains existing on his large estates around Ashford Castle in County Galway, which he bought in 1855. Nearby Cong Abbey was well-known, and the famous Cross of Cong had been moved to a Dublin museum in 1839.


On 24 February 1837 he married his first cousin Elizabeth Guinness, third daughter of Edward Guinness of Dublin, and they had three sons and a daughter, living at Beaumont House, Beaumont, in north County Dublin. In 1856 he bought what is now Iveagh House at 80 St Stephen’s Green. Ashford Castle was described in William Wilde’s book on Lough Corrib in the 1860s.

He was succeeded in the baronetcy by his eldest son, Arthur, who took over the brewery with his brother, the third son, Edward. His second son Benjamin (1842–1900) married Henrietta, daughter of the 3rd Earl of Howth; they moved to England where he was a Captain in the Royal Horse Guards. His daughter Anne (1839–1889) married William, Lord Plunket in 1863. The present-day Guinness Baronets descend from his second son Benjamin.

He was buried in Mount Jerome Cemetery, Dublin, in the family vault, on 27 May. His personalty was sworn under £1,100,000 on 8 August 1868. A bronze statue of him by John Foley was erected by the Cathedral Chapter in St. Patrick’s churchyard, on the south side of the cathedral, in September 1875, which was restored in 2006.