Patent No. 20100247276A1: Keg Lifting Device

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Today in 2010, US Patent 20100247276 A1 was issued, an invention of Giuseppe Loria, for his “Keg Lifting Device.” Here’s the Abstract:

An improved lifting device and associated system for handling a standard beverage keg comprises a rigid support frame formed to partially surround a standing keg and including a pair of vertical posts spaced apart and interconnected by separate upper and lower transverse beams, the posts being erected and supported upon respective lateral base beams that extend forward and rearward of the posts with a support brace angularly disposed and secured over each forward beam extension. A lever rod is pivotally connected to the upper transverse beam having a lower handle end and an upper working end carrying a bifurcated chain link attached thereto, the bifurcated chain link holding a pair of hook fasteners sized and shaped to fit the hand holds provided on the upper rim of the standard keg. With the support frame placed alongside the standing keg and the working end of the lever rod directly over the keg, the hook fasteners are made to engage the hand holds on opposite sides of the keg and apply a clamping pressure to the keg upon lifting. A deployable extension chain further provided on the support frame is adapted to fasten to the handle end of the lever rod to hold the lifted position of the keg, allowing a dolly with a circularly formed raised surface layer to engage the bottom of the keg for its immediate transport.

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Patent No. 3469992A: Chill Stability And Foam Adherence Of Beer

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Today in 1902, US Patent 3469992 A was issued, an invention of Frede B. Strandskov and Henry L. Ziliotto, assigned to the F&M Schaefer Brewing Co., for their “Chill Stability and Foam Adherence of Beer.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

The present invention relates to improvements in the chemical preservation of beer and more particularly it relates to the improvement of the chill stability and the foam adherence properties of beer which has been preserved against microbial growth by the addition thereto of a chemical preservative.

It is a desideratum in the beer making art to eliminate the necessity for pasteurization or refrigeration of finished beer. This is desirable (1) to avoid possible deleterious effects on the taste of the commercial product; (2) to avoid having to keep the beer refrigerated in storage before consumption; and/or (3) to obtain saving in cost per unit produced. It is known that beer may be preserved against microbial growth and the above objects thus accomplished, by treating the finished beer with heptyl parahydroxybenzoate, i.e., the heptyl ester of para-hydroxybenzoic acid as well as alkali metal or alkaline earth metal salts thereof. The discovery of the use of this compound to preserve finished beer represents a great advance in the art of beer making and provides the means by which the disadvantages of the necessity of pasteurization and/or refrigeration may be avoided. It has been discovered that the preservation in the abovemanner, however, tends to introduce complications which it is desirable to overcome if the most acceptable beer product is to be obtained.

In order to be commercially acceptable, a beer must possess certain properties; for example, it must be sparkling clear. Two additional properties which are most significant to beer connoisseurs are referred to as chill stability and foam adherence. The first of these relates to the property noted above as sparkling clear. As the name implies, on occasion a haze forms in some beer when it is chilled. As the temperature of the beer is returned to room temperature, the haze disappears, only to reappear upon subsequent rechilling. This haze is referred to as chill haze. The second of these significant properties, foam adherence, is of special importance to the connoisseurs. This property relates to the adherence of the beer foam to the sides of the drinking glass as the foam collapses or as the glass is being emptied. Beer, which in all other respects has excellent potential, may be excluded from the market solely because of the lack of an acceptable level of foam adherence. One of the marks of a beer connoisseur is his appreciation of the significance of beer foam adherence to the sides of the drinking glass.

3,469,992 Patented Sept. 30, 1969 In the instant invention it is important to note that foam adherence is notably distinct from the property of foam retention. Foam retention, or foam life, is a quality denoting the ability of the head, or layer of foam on a beer, to resist collapse with passage of time. Foam adherence as noted above refers to the ability of foam, as it collapses or as the beer is drained away, to leave a film of foam curtains or lace clinging to the walls of the container. It is from this curtain that the measurement of foam adherence is obtained. A significant foam curtain may be formed from beer, the head of which has completely collapsed and disappeared.

When finished beer is preserved against microbial growth by the addition thereto of heptyl para-hydroxybenzoate or a salt thereof, it has been found that adverse effects are sometimes produced on the acceptable values for chill stability and foam adherence. It is the object of the instant invention to overcome these adverse effects in order that the most commercially acceptable product possible may be obtained.

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Patent No. 710145A: Beer Cooler

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Today in 1902, US Patent 710145 A was issued, an invention of John M. Dieterle, for his “Beer Cooler.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

This invention relates to new and useful improvements in beer-coolers, the object of my invention being to provide a self-cleaning beer-cooler and one which will be more sanitary in its operation.

As at present constructed beer-coolersI consist of a number of parallel communicating tubes having pipes for the ingress and egress of the beer extending from the same side of the beer-cooler. The beer is admitted to the cooler and ows therethrough to the pipe leading to the faucet. The pipes through which the beer runs, composing the cooler, necessarily gather a sediment deposited by the beer and become lined with organic matter, which is deleterious and unwholesome in the beer. Heretofore beer-coolers have been constructed with. end caps covering the ends of the several tubes, and an elongated brush has been separately inserted into each of these tubes for the purpose of removing foreign matter which accumulates therein. This means of cleaning the tubes is inconvenient because it is necessary to remove the end caps from the row of tubes, and, being inconvenient, this cleaning is likely to be neglected. Moreover, it is not as effectual as the means hereinafter described, for the use of which my improved beer-cooler is adapted.

In beer coolers as heretofore constructed there has always been a comparatively long line of pipe intervening between the cooler and the faucet, and the beer while passing through this pipe, after having been cooled, again rises somewhat in temperature, due to the fact that while the beer-cooler is surrounded by ice or other suitable cold-producing mediaA the conducting-pipe just referred 5o to has not been similarly cooled.

The objects of my invention, therefore, are threefold-first, to increase the frequency of cleaning beer-coolers by making it easy to do so, thus increasing the sanitariness of the process; second, to construct a beer-cooler which is self-cleaning, and thereby more effectually to cleanse the same, and thus conduce to a more sanitary method of cooling beer, and, third, to provide a beer-cooler so constructed as to be located adjacent to the faucet or beer-tap without the intervention of a pump ‘or long line of conducting-pipe.

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Patent No. 2906624A: Apparatus And Method For Extracting Air From Beverages

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Today in 1959, US Patent 2906624 A was issued, an invention of Pincus Deren, assigned to Pabst Brewing Co., for his “Apparatus and Method for Extracting Air from Beverages.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

The present invention consists in the method or process of controlling the air content of carbonated beverages, especially bottled beer, and to the apparatus for carrying out the process.

It is well known that conventional practices in bottling carbonated beverages, particularly beer, causes a certain amount of oxidation of some of the constituents of the product, resulting in an undesirable change in flavor and in accelerated instability which greatly reduces the shelf life of the beverage.

Numerous attempts were made to eliminate’the excess air, and it was found that to remove the excess air successfully it was necessary to cause the beverage to foam and permit the latter to rise in the neck of the bottle to expel the air above the liquid level. Also, it was found that, to achieve good results, enough of the foam must be formed to fill the neck with fine bubbles to the top of the rim of the bottleneck.

One means for producing foam is by knocking the bottle sufliciently to cause the release of the gas in the beer; another means is by jetting or squirting a stream of beer into the beer in the bottle after it has been filled. A third method is by the injection of a stream of CO gas into the liquid.

Control of the degree of foaming by the methods just described is very difficult. When the knocking procedure is used, the condition of the surface of the bottle influences the degree of foaming. When jetting, either with beer or with CO gas, the liquid content is disturbed, and small variations in the temperature of the product and on the inside surface of the container will result in different degrees of foaming. The uncontrolled foaming results in either great variations in the final air content, or in the loss of large quantities of beer.

The primary object of the present invention is to overcome the disadvantages inherent in the conventional 7 Another object of the invention resides in the provision of novel means for removing most of the air before the foam is formed.

A further object is to reduce the losses of beverage due to excessive foaming and thereby practically eliminate socalled short fills.

A still further object resides in the provision of novel means for creating instantaneous suction on the liquid just as the foam starts to form to facilitate the removal of air.

Still another object of the invention consists in the provision of a new and novel apparatus to permit the process and the steps thereof to be accomplished and carried out successfully.

Numerous other objects and advantages will be apparent throughout the progress of the specification.

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Beer, Diapers and Correlation

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This is only marginally about beer, but since I’m often reading over data, statistics and scientific reports, notions of causation and correlation have become a subject of great interest. This is a Slideshare by Mark Madson, a research analyst with Third Nature in Portland, Oregon. Apparently in schools teaching business, marketing and the like, instructors often include a tale showing a correlation between the sales of beer and diapers, to illustrate thinking in new ways and how seemingly unrelated items might be connected, or could be connected by a savvy company. Having worked retail for many years during various stages of my life, the science of getting a customer’s attention through shelf placement, cross-merchandising and other strategies I find fascinating, in part because it’s a window into human nature itself. In his presentation, Beer, Diapers, and Correlation: A Tale of Ambiguity, Madson examines the oft-related story of a correlation between beer and diapers and tries to find out its origin and whether or not it’s actually true.

The story of the correlation between beer and diaper sales is commonly used to explain product affinities in introductory data mining courses. Rarely does anyone ask about the origin of this story. Is it true? Why is it true? What does true mean anyway?

The latter question is the most interesting because it challenges the ideas of accuracy in data and analytic models.

This is the real history of the beer and diapers story, explaining its origins and truth, based on repeated analyses of retail data over two decades. It will show that one can have multiple contradictory results from analytic models, and how they can all be true.

Patent No. 460291A: Apparatus For Heating And Pitching Barrels

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Today in 1891, US Patent 460291 A was issued, an invention of Friedeich Jung, for his “Apparatus for Heating and Pitching Barrels.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

The object of my invention, as described below, is to burn out beer-barrels with a direct flame and to remove the danger of explosions, which are still of frequent occurrence in pitching barrels. It is a notorious fact that the latter far more frequently occurs especially when barrels are pitched by the application of hot air or steam than when an open flame or direct fire is employed. The explosive gases are generated and the explosion is produced generally on account of a want of atmospheric air in the barrel.

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Patent No. 5248062A: Beer Keg Tap Apparatus

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Today in 1993, US Patent 5248062 A was issued, an invention of Vincent G. Hillard, for his “Beer Keg Tap Apparatus.” Here’s the Abstract:

A tap member is arranged with a threaded lid directed into engagement with an upper end of the tap structure configured as a cylindrical housing, including a cavity receiving a compressed gas canister there within. Upon projection of the lid into the housing, the canister is pierced directing compressed gas from the canister into an underlying beer keg, whereupon beer is dispensed through a dispensing conduit.

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Historic Beer Birthday: C.L. Centlivre

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Today is the birthday of C.L. Centlivre (September 27, 1827-January 13, 1894). Centlivre was born in France, and settle in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he founded the C.L. Centlivre Brewing Company with his brother, Frank. It was also known as the French Brewery and much later as the Old Crown Brewery.

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The Wikipedia page for the Old Crown Brewing Corporation includes this short biography:

Charles Louis Centlivre was born in Dannemarie, Haut-Rhin, France, September 27, 1827. He was trained as a cooper (profession) and initially came to America in 1847, having settled in New Orleans, Louisiana. After a cholera epidemic he returned to France, returning to America via New York City with his father and two brothers. After living in Massillon, Ohio and working as a cooper in Louisville, Ohio, he founded a brewery in McGregor, Iowa in 1850 and operated it until he came to Fort Wayne, Indiana in 1862 and founded the C. L. Centlivre Brewing Company with his brother, Frank. He died in 1894 at the age of 67.

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A statute of Centlivre that used to be on the brewery but
now resides above a Fort Wayne restaurant.

The brewery was first known as the French Brewery when it was founded un 1862, but Charles L. Centlivre’s name was associated with it from the very beginning. In 1893, the name was formally changed to the C.L. Centlivre Brewing Co., which it remained until it was shut down in 1918 by the Indiana State Prohibition, two years before it was national. During Prohibition the brewery was called Centlivre Ice & Storage Co. After repeal in 1933, it was rebranded as the Centlivre Brewing Corp., until 1961, when it was changed to the Old Crown Brewing Co.. That was still its name when it closed for good in 1973.

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Here’s a biography from “The Pictorial History of Fort Wayne,” published in 1917.

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The website Fort Wayne Beer has a great account of the history of the Centlivre Brewery.

CHARLES LOUIS CENTLIVRE was french, Monsieur Centlivre (His surname has been anglicized to rhyme with “river”) was born in 1827 in Lutran, a small town in the northeast of France about nine miles from the German border and 90 miles south of the 349-year-old Kronenbourg Brewery in Strasbourg. When he was 12, his family father, stepmother, five siblings and a stepbrother-moved to neighboring Valdieu, where he apparently apprenticed as a cooper.

BON…JOUR AMERICA

Charles, along with his sister Celestine and stepbrother Henri Tonkeul sailed from France and arrived in the Port of New Orleans on December 24, 1850. Charles and Henri would soon relocate to Louisville, OH near Canton (now home of the NFL Hall of Fame), where they reportedly met up with other relatives, and where Charles found work as a cooper. In 1854 they were joined by Charles’ father, stepmother and younger siblings. It was here that Centlivre wed Marie Houma ire, a young French woman who spoke no English. The newlyweds had met by accident on a train reroute to Louisville. Marie had boarded the wrong train; she was supposed to be heading to Louisville, Kentucky’ Late in 1854 or early 1855, Charles and Marie moved to McGregor, Iowa, where he purchased some land. McGregor, located on the Mississippi, was becoming a hub where grain from Iowa and Minnesota was transported across the river and sent on to Milwaukee via railroad; by the 1870s it had become the busiest shipping port west of Chicago. A number of family members also moved to Iowa, including Centlivre’s brothers Francois and Denis, sister Celestine and his father Louis. Marie gave birth to their first two children, Amelia and Louis, in Iowa. Charles met Christian Magnus, a German emigrant and brewer, while in Dubuque County, Iowa. Magnus helped Centlivre start a brewery in Twin Springs, Iowa about 1857 and served as its foreman until 1858. Magnus was known to age beer in caves, which may be how Centlivre learned to lager beer. Also while in Twin Springs, Centlivre declared his intent to become a United States citizen. More than a brewer, Charles L. Centlivre was an entrepreneur, and while in Fort Wayne, Indiana, possibly to visit his stepbrother Henri Tonkeul, (Tonkel Road still exists in Fort Wayne), he saw a greater business potential than existed in Iowa. Fort Wayne had a large German population, a total population at the time of about 10,000, rail service connecting Fort Wayne to Chicago and Pittsburgh and three rivers from which to draw water and ice for brewing. In February 1862 he purchased 320 acres in Fort Wayne from Rufus French.

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THE FRENCH BREWERY

It was here that Charles, his father, and his brother Frank literally built a primitive Brewhouse with their own hands. Located next to the St. Mary’s river on Lima Plank Road, now known as Spy Run Avenue, the French Brewery opened on September 27, 1862. By 1864 all the Centlivre property in Iowa would be sold. Charles’ brother Denis relocated to southwestern Wisconsin and established the Platteville Brewery in the town of the same name. In Fort Wayne, the French Brewery grew in both size and popularity, and the Centlivre’s continued to purchase land there to expand the brewery and other ventures. A malting plant was installed at the brewery in 1868. In 1869 Louis Centlivre had a deed drawn up that granted his son 80 additional acres of land and all the buildings and stock contained thereon. For nine years the Centlivre family, which numbered as many as nine, lived in a section of the brewery until a family home was built in 1871. With the 1871 Chicago fire and the destruction of many Chicago breweries, Charles saw an opportunity to recruit Peter Nussbaum as Brewmaster at the French Brewery. Nussbaum, who had learned his craft in Luxembourg, accepted the position. Until his arrival, the only products of the French Brewery were French Lager and Excelsior. Nussbaum added XX Brand, Bohemian, Munchener, and Kaiser to the brewery’s menu. Centlivre Special and Nickel Plate replaced the latter two. Nussbaum served as a Brewmaster for the Centlivre brewery for 37 years and worked for three generations of the family. Less than half a mile south of the brewery is Nussbaum Street, where “Herr Nussbaum” lived. Centlivre was continually improving his brewing facilities. He erected a new bottling plant, one of the first in the area, in 1876. Two years later, the brewery received Fort Wayne’s first artificial refrigeration units. The French Brewery produced approximately 500 barrels of beer in its first year of operation. By 1880, popularity and expansion ramped that number up to 20,000 barrels annually. In the late 1870s and early 1880s the Centlivre family turned 28 acres along Spy Run Ave. into Centlivre Park, a place for families to gather and enjoy picnics, sports and music. Rowboats could be rented for $1.00 a day, and, of course, Centlivre Beer was available for a modest price.

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The Centlivre’s had a strong interest in boating. Charles’ son Joseph rowed competitively until he developed typhoid after his skiff was swamped during a race in the Detroit River. Joseph died in September 1882; just four years later Marie Centlivre passed after a brief illness. By the mid- 1880s Charles Centlivre was preparing his remaining sons to run the brewery. Charles F. was a delivery clerk and then superintendent of the bottling works; Louis Alphonse worked as the brewery manager. Daughter Amelia’s husband, John Reuss, became the French Brewery’s corporate secretary and treasurer. In spring 1887 construction of the C. L. Centlivre Street Railway Co. began. Two rail cars would replace the old horse-drawn trolleys that took people to Centlivre Park. The line also played a role in the brewery’s business, as it carried beer deliveries to the Nickel Plate Railroad station and saloons downtown. Later that year the family celebrated another milestone. On August 6, Charles Louis Centlivre, now 60 years old, became a naturalized U.S. citizen.

Also, Hoosier Beer has some additional information about the brewery’s history.

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Here’s another short account from Field Tripper:

In 1862 a French immigrant, Charles L. Centlivre, established one of Fort Wayne’s most well-known industries on the west bank of the St. Joseph River, just north of where the State Street Bridge crosses the river. Known initially as the “French Brewery,” Centlivre’s enterprise, along with the Berghoff Brewery on the east side of town, made Fort Wayne a leading beer producer in the Midwest by the end of the nineteenth century. Employees of the brewery honored the founder by placing a statue of Charles Centlivre on top of the factory building. The brewery ceased operations in 1974, and the business-related buildings were subsequently razed. The 1888 Queen Anne–style Charles Centlivre residence that appears in this view could still be seen as of 2000 on Spy Run Avenue north of the intersection with State Street. A used car lot, as of 2000, occupied the site where the brewery once stood.

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Patent No. 4406301A: Keg-Tapping Structure

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Today in 1983, US Patent 4406301 A was issued, an invention of Vincent J. Cerrato, for his “Keg-Tapping Structure.” Here’s the Abstract:

The invention contemplates removable structure to facilitate keg-tapping, and pressurized dispensing of liquid contents of the keg. A so-called Barnes neck forms part of the keg and has a bore with an elastomeric ring seal and flange at its lower end, and a valve-and-tube subassembly is inserted through the neck, to the point of valve-body compression of the seal, when secured by a removable retaining ring. In the course of such insertion, one or more radially inward lugs on the neck flange track corresponding slot formations in the subassembly. Each such slot formation has a first upward longitudinal course, leading to an angular bayonet-like offset course, and then to a second upward longitudinal course. The location of the angular offset is such that the valve body cannot compressionally load the seal ring in the absence of the partial rotation needed to develop lug alignment with the second upward longitudinal course.

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Historic Beer Birthday: Conrad Seipp

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Today is the birthday of Conrad Seipp (September 27, 1825-January 28, 1890). Conrad Seipp immigrated to the United States from Hessen, Germany, in the 1840s. After moving to Chicago, he drove a beer wagon for Miller Brothers brewery. Eventually he started his own brewery. By the turn of the century, the Seipp Brewery expanded to become one of the largest in the United States.

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Chicagology includes a short history of Conrad Seipp at the page about Chicago Breweries:

Conrad Seipp, the founder of the brewing company of that name, was born in 1825, near Frankfort on-the-Main, Germany, his early trade being that of a carpenter and joiner. In 1849 he came to this country, locating at Rochester, N. Y., but after a brief stay there, during which he followed his trade, removed to Chicago. For the succeeding five years he was proprietor of a hotel, but in 1854 rented a small plant, known as the M. Best Brewery, at the foot of Fourteenth street. In the following year his brewery was destroyed by fire, but in the fall he rebuilt on the site of the present plant of the Conrad Seipp Brewing Company.

The main building, of brick, had a frontage of about fifty feet, the beer cellars being underground, the malt floors on the ground, the living rooms for Mr. Seipp and his three children on the second floor, and the storage rooms for the barley and malt above. In 1858 Mr. Seipp formed a partnership with Frederick Lehmann, the firm of Seipp & Lehmann continuing until the death of the latter in July, 1872.

The surviving partner purchased the interest of the Lehmann heirs and in 1876 incorporated the Conrad Seipp Brewing Company, of which he remained president up to the time of his death, in January, 1890. During this period also Wm. C. Seipp, his son, served as vice-president, and T. J. Lefens as secretary and treasurer. From the founding of the business, in 1854, until its incorporation in 1876, the output increased from 1,000 barrels of lager beer to more than 100,000 barrels. The founder of the company was a man, not only of remarkable strength of character, but of rare domestic and philanthropic virtues. After his death different local charities received bequests from his estate which amounted to more than $100,000.

In April, 1890, a few months after the death of the founder of the business, the Conrad Seipp, the West Side, and the F. J. Dewes’ breweries, with the L. C. Huck and the George Bullen malt houses were amalgamated to form the City of Chicago Brewing and Malting Company. By this time the Conrad Seipp plant had expanded into one of the most extensive establishments in the country, with an annual output of 240,000 barrels of lager beer. It was one of the pioneers in the adoption of artificial refrigeration, the first of its machines being installed in 1881.

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After the success of his brewery, Seipp built a large mansion on the south shore of Geneva Lake in Wisconsin, which today is a tourist destination known as the Black Point Estate and Gardens. Their Facebook page includes …

Conrad Seipp’s Story

Conrad Seipp, the youngest of five brothers and sisters arrived alone in America at the age of 24 after fighting in the 1848 German Revolution as a protector of royalty. He was forced to fight against family & friends. Upon conclusion of the Revolution in he arrived in Rochester NY and moved to Lyons Illinois with his new wife Maria. His first job was driving a beer wagon. He soon set his sights on Chicago where he successfully managed a hotel on the corner of Washington & Fifth (Now Wells). In 1851 he staked claim on 80 acres of farmland (now 79th and Jeffery, SE side). In 1854 with the profits from the sale of his hotel he purchased a small brewery from Matthias Best on 14th street. It burned down within the year so he immediately built a new brick brewery at the foot of 27th and Lake Michigan with 50′ frontage, underground cellars, malt floor on ground level and 2nd floor living quarters for his growing family. By the end of the first year he had 6 employees and was producing over 1,000 barrels. In 1858 he formed a partnership with Frederick Lehmann and the name was changed to Seipp & Lehmann. The brewery expanded to 50 employees and began producing over 50,000 barrels annually. His wife Maria died of pneumonia at age 39 in 1866. Understanding the need to have a matriarch he met and married 26 year old Catharina Orb within the year. Disaster again struck in 1872 when Lehmann was killed in a buggy accident but the brewery continued to grow. Producing 103,697 barrels of beer during the period of May 1872-1873, it was now the leading brewery in the United States and Conrad was only 47 years old. He lost the US lead to a Milwaukee brewer but the Chicago Tribune article January 1, 1880 described the Seipp Brewery as the largest in Chicago with a barrelage in 1879 of 108,347. Since 1877 he had to purchase malt and barely from outside sources to keep up with production. (See 1877 Chicago News article attached) Seipp was one of the first to ship beer outside Chicago, his Salvator bottled beer was greatly appreciated in the developing Western states and Territories. According to another Tribune article, “Seipp’s bottled beer was often considered a temperance drink that has done more to reform the mining districts of the West then all the moral agencies that have ever been sent there. It has supplemented the use of stronger drinks.” Conrad’s extraordinary use of advertising helped make him one of the most successful brewers, using match boxes, coasters, trading cards, serving trays, and beer mugs. During the 1880’s a number of horse racing tracks were opening up in the Chicago area. He purchased property near Washington Park Race Track and other real estate surrounding the area tracks allowing him to build company saloons to accommodate thirsty customers attending the races. This period of growth in Chicago’s ran unchecked with sporting houses and brothels cropping up weekly and often protected by ward politicians and police alike. There were numerous Seipp Beer advertisements in “The Sporting House Directory of 1889, a Guide to Chicago Brothels” which just proved that Seipp knew and understood niche markets. In the early part of the 20th century, it was estimated that the annual consumption of beer in the Chicago bordellos was more than seven million bottles of beer and we can only assume many of those bottles were from the Conrad Seipp Brewery!

Conrad-Seipp-narrow In 1887 Chicago beer baron Conrad Seipp began construction for Black Point Estate & Gardens as a respite for his family. Owners like Seipp never envisioned their homes could ever be more than that since there were no roads nor access to utilities. The estate could be reached only by boat. The 20-room Queen Anne-style “cottage” was completed in 1888 for $20,000. It included 13 bedrooms and only one bathroom. It sat on nearly eight acres of beautiful grounds that included 620 feet of undisturbed Geneva Lake shoreline. While building Black Point, Seipp was simultaneously erecting a new mansion in Chicago. During this process he moved much of the family’s furniture from the previous Chicago home into Black Point.

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A travel website, d-LIFE of @lm!ng, has an article entitled The Four Generations: Seipp Family

Conrad Seipp is a German immigrant who came to the United States in 1849 at the age of 25. He married Maria Teutsch and had three children. Before he became a Beer Baron in Chicago, he was a beer wagon driver for Miller Brothers brewery. Then he became an owner of a small hotel before he bought a small beer factory in 1854. A year after, his brewery was burned down. Conrad didn’t give up and rebuilt his company out of brick with underground cellars, a malt floor and family living quarters. After Maria died in 1866, he married Catherine Orb, and together they have five children.

Business seemed to be progressing which was producing 1000 barrels of beer in its first year. In 1858 he partnered with M. Frederick Lehmann to expand their business. In just ten years they produced 50,000 barrels of beers yearly. Seipp and Lehmann’s brewery grew to become one of the largest in the United States. But Lehmann died in an accident, so Seipp bought his partner’s shares and renamed his business to Conrad Seipp Brewing Company.

Seipp died in 1890, soon after Black Point was completed. His company was sold to British investors who merged with other brewing businesses in Chicago. Seipp family member continued to work at the brewery, but later their production exceeded by its competitors. The company was closed in 1933.

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The Encyclopedia of Chicago has this entry for the Seipp (Conrad) Brewing Co.:

Conrad Seipp, an immigrant from Germany, started making beer in Chicago in 1854, after buying a small brewery from Mathias Best. By 1856, Seipp had six employees, who helped him produce about 1,100 barrels of beer each year. In 1858, Frederick Lehman joined the company, which became Seipp & Lehman. By the end of the 1860s, when Seipp & Lehman was one of Chicago’s leading brewers, about 50 employees made more than 50,000 barrels of beer (worth close to $500,000) per year. After Lehman died in 1872, Seipp organized the Conrad Seipp Brewing Co. Dominating the Chicago beer market by the late 1870s, Seipp was among the largest breweries in the United States, producing over 100,000 barrels a year. After Conrad Seipp died in 1890, the company merged with several smaller Chicago breweries to form the City of Chicago Consolidated Brewing & Malting Co., which was controlled by British investors, although Seipp was allowed to operate with considerable autonomy and under the Seipp name. At the turn of the century, the Seipp brewery was still active; annual output had reached about 250,000 barrels. The widespread establishment of neighborhood liquor stores around 1910 siphoned off sales from Seipp and other city breweries, but Seipp managed to stay afloat by introducing home beer deliveries. Grain and coal shortages during World War I stifled Seipp’s production before the enactment of Prohibition in 1919 dealt a devastating blow to the beer industry as a whole. The company limped along through the Prohibition years by producing low-alcohol “near bear” and distributing soda pop. Many speculated that Seipp also produced bootleg beer for the Torrio-Capone crime organization. Ironically, Seipp operations ceased in 1933, just before Prohibition was lifted. The brewery was destroyed that year to make room for a new hospital.

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And here’s a curious artifact, a press release from the Conrad Seipp Brewery from May 4, 1879.

Only Lager Beer! Conrad Seipp’s Brewery Ships Genuine Lager Beer Only

Lager beer is the demand of the day! There was a time when the public preferred fresh beer, and brewers conformed to the fashion. There were also other factors involved: The tremendous increase in beer consumption and inadequate storage facilities which prevented an accumulation of what brewers considered an “adequately seasoned supply”. The public eventually became aware that fresh beer was not a particularly healthful beverage and thus public opinion clamored again for genuine Lager Beer.

Among those brewers who always have a large stock of well-seasoned beer on hand and need not substitute a hurried, artificially aged produce, is the Conrad Seipp Brewing Company. There has hardly been a period in the Company’s 2history when such a large supply for summer consumption has been available. According to official figures of the revenue collector, Seipp’s Brewery sold 108,000 barrels of beer between May 1, 1878 and April 30, 1879. Aside from this colossal amount the government report shows that a tremendous quantity was stored in the Brewery’s recently enlarged cellars–41,671 large barrels.

These figures are not mere estimates or exaggerations. They are accurate and are taken from official statements–showing the amount registered by the Revenue Department, and, quite aside from the fact that the Seipp Brewing Company has no intention of cheating the government, a falsification of these reports is not an easy matter, and if the Company claims to have a larger stock in storage than is actually available, then the Brewery would be faced with the problem of paying large additional sums for taxes.

The public can therefore rest assured that the Seipp Brewery had the above-mentioned quantity of beer in stock on May 1, this year, that is: 41,671 full 3barrels, and it is therefore quite evident that this large quantity was not brewed in a day or two; it required almost five months. Obviously, anyone seeing the sign “Seipp’s Beer” displayed by a saloon will be convinced that genuine, healthful Lager Beer is on tap.

That such a large concern as the Conrad Seipp Brewing Company makes special efforts to provide its customers with genuine Lager Beer augurs well and proves that even in this endeavor time-tried products will reassert themselves and make short shrift of “quick production processes”.

Ere long other breweries must emulate the good example–if they have not already done so–and the public can then drink confidently the usual morning, noon, or evening quota without harmful after effects resulting from a hurriedly mixed, artificially fermented concoction; a wholesome, slowly and properly seasoned brew is now available.

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