Patent No. 7367670B2: Eyewear Bottle Opener

patent-logo
Today in 2008, US Patent 7367670 B2 was issued, an invention of Travis E. Duane, for his “Eyewear Bottle Opener.” Here’s the Abstract:

An eyewear bottle opener wherein a bottle opener is housed within the reinforced earpiece of the frame of the eyewear for the convenience of a person wearing the eyewear and desiring to open a bottle having a metal cap.

US07367670-20080506-D00001
US07367670-20080506-D00002
US07367670-20080506-D00003
US07367670-20080506-D00004

Beer In Ads #1902: Week-End At The Lake


Thursday’s ad is entitled Week-End At The Lake, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #33 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, three couples are frolicking at a lake house probably owned by one of them (or possibly a rental, I suppose). Three look like they’re dressed for the water, while the others do not. It looks like a picnic spread is being laid out, and happily somebody has a pot of beer.

033. Week-End at the Lake by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Patent No. 2039345A: Screw-Top Bottle Mouth

patent-logo
Today in 1936, US Patent 2039345 A was issued, an invention of Edward A. Ravenscroft, for his “Screw-Top Bottle Mouth.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

This invention relates to bottle mouths capable of being closed by drawn or molded caps of practical depths ‘and diameters. It resides in a formation of mouth which provides for a pouring lip without materially reducing the area of the throat or increasing the diameter of the required cap, and without necessitating a lowering of fastening means on the neck to such a point that drawn or molded caps .of impractical depths are required for closing.

In forming closures for bottles substantial economies may be erected through the use of cap closures instead of corks. The cap closure is ideal for bottles intended to contain dry or semi-dry substances, but for closing bottles intended to contain liquids, which are to be dispensed therefrom, cap closures known prior to this invention are open to very serious objections. The common screw cap closure is entirely devoid of any pouring lip and the stream emitted from such a bottle mouth breaks during pouring, spreads down the side of the bottle and is so erratic in behavior that it cannot be directed with any degree of certainty. The fluid which flows down the side of the bottle spreads in copious quantities into the threads or other fastening means on the neck and in many cases causes sticking of the cap. In the case of corrosive or poisonous fluids, the fluid on the outside of the bottle constitutes a real hazard; and in any case is decidedly disagreeable.

Attempts have been made to remedy the above difficulties but none of them has been acceptable. One of these attempts proposes the forming of a pouring lip at the top of the bottle, the threads for securing the cap being displaced a relatively long distance down the neck. This necessitates an exceptionally deep cap, which is so expensive to draw that any economy over the use of ordinary corks is impossible. Further, a substantial constriction of the throat of the bottle is involved in this construction which interferes with rapid pouring. In other constructions proposed a notch at the neck of the bottle is employed, the same producing a malformed lip of small effectiveness in producing a good stream and a clean cut-off. In this form the fastening means are placed entirely below the notch and here also a cap of excessive depth is required. In this form a very substantial constriction in the throat also is involved prior to this invention no means of eliminating the same has been proposed.

According to this invention, however, a good pouring lip is provided without constricting the throat to a substantial degree, the same being that the pouring stream is kept thin and in the accomplished without requiring a lowering of the fastening means on the outside of the neck. With the mouth of this invention a cap of ordinary depth may be employed, the same being substantially no deeper nor more expensive than 5 caps used with ordinary closures. There is also provided in this invention a crest concentric with the exterior of the neck so that a gasket in the cap will repeatedly seat to form a good seal.

US2039345-0

Beer In Ads #1901: Showing Off The Flower Garden


Wednesday’s ad is entitled Showing Off The Flower Garden, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #32 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, one couple is showing off their flower garden to another. One of them looks like he must be John Holl’s dad. The men hold their beers and point. The women left their beers on the table behind them and actually touch the flowers. Also, notice how in the inset below the painting, the vase resembles a hand holding a beer glass, doesn’t it?

032. Showing Off the Flower Garden by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Patent No. WO2006046879A2: Method Of Making Colorless And Artificially Colored Clear Beer

patent-logo
Today in 2006, US Patent WO 2006046879 A2 was issued, an invention of Alberto D. Rivera, Emiliano S. Macapugay, Jade Y. De Carlos, assigned to the San Miguel Corporation, for their “Method of Making Colorless and Artificially Colored Clear Beer.” Here’s the Abstract:

This invention is directed to a method of preparing a colorless and artificially colored, clear beer through adsorption process by contacting the wort with activated carbon during wort boiling. This method produces a colorless, clear beer with originally processed inherent taste and aroma utilizing existing brewery process and equipment. Artificially colored, clear beer such as primary- colored beer, which can be conveniently produced using the colorless, clear product is also disclosed.

clear-beer-bottle

Of course, Miller Brewing tried their hand at something similar with their Miller Clear beer, which they tested in 1993. And of course, there was Coors Brewing’s Zima, released a little before that, although they referred to it as a “malt beverage” rather than a beer.

miller-clear-ad

Beer In Ads #1900: Friends Over For Tennis


Tuesday’s ad is entitled Friends Over For Tennis, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #31 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, a group of apparently well-to-do people invited some “friends over for tennis.” I can’t imagine that even in 1949 that many people had their own tennis courts, so I ‘m not sure who this ad was directed at or why they though people might be able to relate to this situation. I suspect it may have been aspirational, since everyone thinks they’ll be wealthy enough to one day, though it’s probably only the 1% now who might, much less in the 1940s when wealth wasn’t nearly as consolidated.

031. Friends Over for Tennis by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Patent No. 2116006A: Hop And Stem Separator

patent-logo
Today in 1938, US Patent 2116006 A was issued, an invention of Edouard Thys, for his “Hop and Stem Separator.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

The object of the present invention is generally to improve and simplify the construction and operation of separators; to provide a separator which is particularly intended for separating stems from hops; and more specifically stated, to provide an inclined endless conveyor having trough-shaped members extending crosswise thereof, said troughs being divided into small pockets and said pockets being so shaped that the hops when deposited on the conveyor will settle in the bottom portion of the pockets while the stems will stand endwise and project upwardly from the pockets or lie on the surface thereof in a position where they can be readily removed by a revolving brush under which the vation of the hop and stem separating machine.

US2116006-0
US2116006-1

Patent No. WO1996012669A1: Method And Apparatus For Enhancing A Beverage Head

patent-logo
Today in 1996, US Patent WO 1996012669 A1 was issued, an invention of Alexander Richard Dunn and John Cooke, assigned to Scottish & Newcastle Plc, for their “Method and Apparatus For Enhancing a Beverage Head.” Here’s the Abstract:

A gas jetting apparatus is used to jet a fine jet of gas through an orifice at a nozzle (18) into a beverage, for example beer, to promote formation of a creamy head. This apparatus may be incorporated into a beverage dispenser, for example a beer tap which dispenses draught beer.

And includes the following description:

“Method and Apparatus for Enhancing a Beverage Head”

This invention relates to a method and apparatus for enhancing a beverage head, particularly, but not exclusively, a head on a draught beer dispensed from a tap.

Sparklers are sometimes used to agitate a flow of beer as it is dispensed from a beer tap; this can promote frothing of the beer and contribute to formation of a head on the dispensed beer. It is also known to provide a single use secondary chamber within a sealed, pressurised beer can from which gas and/or beverage is jetted into beer within the can when the can is opened.

According to a first aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of promoting formation of a beverage head, comprising jetting a fine jet of gas derived from a gas source through at least one orifice and into a dispensed beverage.

The method may form or assist in the formation of a head.

The beverage may be dispensed from a tap; it may be a draught beverage.

The gas may be jetted into the beverage once the beverage has been dispensed. Alternatively or additionally, the gas may be jetted into the beverage whilst the beverage is being dispensed, it may be jetted into a stream of beverage.

Beer In Ads #1898: Getting Ready For Summer


Sunday’s ad is entitled Getting Ready For Summer, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #29 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, a family is in the backyard early in spring. The women are in the yard doing actual work, pruning and planting, while the menfolk sit on the porch making sure their toys, put away over the winter, are ready to go for the first fishing trip of the new year. Seems like a fair distribution of labor, right?

029. Getting Ready For Summer by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Historic Beer Birthday: Jacob Best

jacob-best
Today is the birthday of Jacob Best (May 1, 1786-February 26, 1861). Best founded the brewery that eventually became Pabst Brewing Co., with his four sons in 1844. The Best family’s business was originally called “The Empire Brewery,” and then as the “Jacob Best & Sons Brewery” until 1859 when Phillip Best took over the firm and renamed it the “Phillip Best Brewing Company.” Upon Phillip’s retirement Frederick Pabst and Emil Schandein became the company’s president and vice-president in the mid-1860s and the brewery’s name was amended to Phillip Best & Company. After Schandein died, the company was renamed the Pabst Brewing Company in 1889.

jacob-best

Here’s a short biography from Find a Grave:

Business Magnate. Jacob Best learned the brewer’s trade in his hometown of Hesse Darnstadt, Germany, and then moved on to operate a small brewery in Mattenheim. In 1840, two of Best’s four sons immigrated to America, settling in the Kilbourntown section of Milwaukee. They were joined by Jacob Best, his two younger sons and other family members in 1844. With his sons, Jacob Best opened the Empire Brewery producing lager beer, whiskey and vinegar. As demand increased of light lager beer, the firm changed its name to Best & Company. Retiring in 1853, Jacob Best transferred ownership to Lorenz and Phillip. After 1860, Phillip assumed sole control of the brewery which became the Pabst Brewing Company. While retired, Jacob Best held local political offices, first as a ward assessor and the school commissioner. He remained active until his death.

best-jacob

Immigrant Entrepreneurship has a lengthy article about the Bests, centered around Frederick Pabst, but with background that includes Jacob Best:

In 1844, Phillip Best (born September 26, 1814, in Mettenheim, Grand Duchy of Hesse; died July 17, 1869, in Altenglan, Kingdom of Bavaria), together with his father and three brothers, opened the Jacob Best & Sons Brewery in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Twenty years later, Phillip’s son-in-law Frederick Pabst (born March 28, 1836, in Nikolausrieth, Kingdom of Prussia; died January 1, 1904, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin) joined the company and helped to transform it into the nation’s leading beer producer – first in 1874 and then again in 1879, a position that was maintained until the turn of the twentieth century. As the company’s president, the former ship captain led the firm through a remarkable period of growth and the Pabst Brewing Company (as it came to be called from 1889 onwards) became the epitome of a successful national shipping brewery. Pabst not only contributed to the firm’s (and Milwaukee’s) economic growth, he also left a permanent cultural and social mark both on the German-American community and on the public at large. A decade after the height of his success, Pabst died on New Year’s Eve of 1904, passing on his commercial and cultural legacy to his sons.

The Best family’s relocation from Mettenheim to Milwaukee went relatively smoothly. After spending a few weeks in the summer of 1844 looking for a suitable location, Jacob Sr. purchased two lots on Chestnut Street (today West Juneau Avenue) on September 10 and founded the Empire Brewery. Jacob Sr.’s sons, Charles and Lorenz, soon went on to establish independent brewing ventures, so Jacob Sr. formed a new partnership with his other two sons, Phillip and Jacob Jr., in 1851, which stayed in place until Jacob Sr. retired two years later. After several arguments about the expansion of the firm, Jacob Jr. sold out to Phillip on October 1, 1859, who continued the business as its sole proprietor under the name of the Phillip Best Brewing Company.

In its inaugural year, the Best brewery produced 300 barrels (one barrel equaling 31 US gallons). The firm initially produced ale and porter, but added German-style lager on February 22, 1845. In 1847, Phillip reported in a letter to his wife’s family that the business was developing well and selling 28-30 barrels of beer weekly for $4.50 per barrel ($5 if delivered). The brewery owned three horses for the malt grinding mill, as well as for deliveries in the city and county, and planned to buy another. By 1850, the company’s 2,500-barrel annual production classified it as a medium-sized producer, ranking fourth out of the twelve largest reported breweries in Wisconsin.

As production increased, the company acquired and built new facilities. In 1850, the family purchased a lot on Market Street between Biddle and Martin Streets (today East Kilbourn Avenue and East State Street). Five years later, the company built a new brick house on Market Street with a beer hall on the ground floor, and in 1857 it erected a new main brewery on the north side of Chestnut Street between Ninth and Tenth Streets with large storage cellars. The Milwaukee Sentinel reported on October 9, 1857, that the brewery had the “deepest cellars in the city” and it may be seen from almost any part of the city. The building is a fine looking one, and were it not for a life-sized figure of a sturdy Teuton which is perched on top, in the act of sipping a glass of lager, one would never suspect its being a brewery. It has much more the appearance of a public building of some sort.

The article went on to explain that demand for Best beer was not only “constantly increasing” locally but also across the whole nation: “Everybody has tasted Best’s beer, and it’s very generally acknowledged to be the best in the country.” Although the article certainly exaggerated the national impact of Best’s beer at mid-century, the company had begun to sell their brands outside Wisconsin in the early 1850s when it established a sales office in Chicago, Illinois. While Milwaukee and the surrounding region provided the main market for Best products throughout the second half of the nineteenth century, this early effort to serve the national and – beginning in the 1860s – international market was a distinctive feature of the company’s development.

Best’s production and profits increased during the nationwide economic boom of the 1850s, but the panic of 1857 and the economic disruption of the Civil War slowed the firm’s growth rate. At the height of its early prosperity in 1857, the brewery employed steam power to produce nearly 40,000 barrels a year and was valued at $50,000 (approximately $1.4 million in 2014$). It employed eight men and used ten horses for delivery. Not until after the Civil War would these production levels be reached again. But as the expansion of the family business began to stall, Phillip made his two sons-in-law, Frederick Pabst and Emil Schandein, equal partners in 1864 and 1866 – a decision which turned out to have a lasting impact on the future development of the company.

philip-best-brewery-1880
The Best’s brewery in 1880, a few years after Jacob died and it became the Philip Best Brewing Co.

philip-best-bock