Tuesday’s ad is for “Budweiser,” from 1958. This ad was made for Anheuser-Busch, and was part of their series using the tagline. “Where there’s Life … there’s Bud,” which ran from the 1950s into the 1960s, and this one features a man about to blow out the candles his birthday cake while a woman out of sight pours him a glass of beer. And I know I shouldn’t be focused on this, but what the hell is that weird, abstract background supposed to be? The text begins “Bright Idea.”
Archives for February 2, 2021
Today is the birthday of Anton Schwarz (February 2, 1839-September 24, 1895). In addition to having studied law, he also became a chemist and worked for several breweries in Budapest, before moving to the U.S. in 1868. Moving to New York, he got a job working for the magazine/journal American Brewer, which at the time was more like the People magazine of the brewing industry. He was quickly promoted to editor, eventually buying the publication. He turned it into a serious scientific journal, writing many of the articles himself, but is credited with helping the entire industry improve its standards and processes.
Here’s his entry from the Jewish Encyclopedia, published in 1906.
Austrian chemist; born at Polna, Bohemia, Feb. 2, 1839; died at New York city Sept. 24, 1895. He was educated at the University of Vienna, where he studied law for two years, and at the Polytechnicum, Prague, where he studied chemistry. Graduating in 1861, he went to Budapest, and was there employed at several breweries. In 1868 he emigrated to the United States and settled in New York city. The following year he was employed on “Der Amerikanische Bierbrauer” (“The American Brewer”) and soon afterward became its editor. A few years later he bought the publication, remaining its editor until his death. He did much to improve the processes of brewing in the United States, and in 1880 founded in New York city the Brewers’ Academy of the United States.
Schwarz’s eldest son, Max Schwarz (b. in Budapest July 29, 1863; d. in New York city Feb. 7, 1901), succeeded him as editor of “The American Brewer” and principal of the Brewers’ Academy. He studied at the universities of Erlangen and Breslau and at the Polytechnic High School at Dresden. In 1880 he followed his father to the United States and became associated with him in many of his undertakings.
Both as editor and as principal of the academy he was very successful. Many of the essays in “The American Brewer,” especially those on chemistry, were written by him. He was a great advocate of the “pure beer” question in America.
When the United States Brewers’ Academy celebrated its 25th anniversary, in 1913, there was a ball where several alumni gave speeches and toasts, mentioning Schwarz’ contributions, including this from Gallus Thomann from Germany:
He also co-wrote the Theory and Practice of the Preparation of Malt and the Fabrication of Beer
Beer Advocate also has a nice story of Schwarz, entitled the O.G. Beer Geek.
Over in Gobbler’s Knob, in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, Phil the Groundhog — a.k.a. the Brewhog — raised up his head this morning for the 135th time and looked around, and this year and saw his shadow. You know what that means? It’s six more weeks of drinking winter beers this year. Or something about a late spring, I can’t keep it straight. You can see a video of Punxsutawney Phil here. And there’s more information about Groundhog Day at the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.
But this year, I suppose given how shitty the year is starting, it isn’t too surprising, though not every groundhog agrees on what the future hold. For example, Staten Island Chuck along with Shubenacadie Sam in Canada and General Beau Lee in Georgia have predicted an early spring for 2021.
Although another Canadian groundhog, Balzac Billy, from Alberta, Canada, also predicted six more weeks of winter, whereas Essex Ed of Orange, New Jersey did not see his shadow and neither did Buckeye Chuck of Ohio or Big Al, a 14-foot, 1,000-pound alligator, from Texas, who is given KFC chicken each February 2. If he eats the chicken, it’s an early spring, if he passes, then it’s more winter. This year, he did not eat.
So it’s up in the air whether, I mean weather, we’ll have an early spring or more winter. I tend to go with the original, Punxsutawney Phil, but for no better reason then I’m from Pennsylvania. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Fingers crossed. And if you don’t have time to watch all of the deliciously wonderful Groundhog Day film today, here it is in a slightly shorter version just over three minutes.
Today is also the 50th birthday — The Big 5-O — of Luke Nicholas, founder/brewer of Epic Brewing in New Zealand. Luke brewed for many years in New Zealand before striking out on his own, and also lived in the States for a spell working for RealBeer.com and became fond of hoppy beers. As a result, his beers are some of the hoppiest in New Zealand. He also started a real beer website just for New Zealand, RealBeer.co.nz and was instrumental in starting a Brewers Guild of NZ. Luke was kind enough to show me around the beer scene in Auckland when I was there with my family a few years ago, and we run into one another at beer events surprisingly often. He’s a great beer ambassador not just for his native country, but for great beer everywhere. You can also read about his exploits online at Luke’s Beer. Join me in wishing Luke a very happy birthday.
Today is the feast day of St. Columbanus of Ghent (543 CE–February 15, 959 CE), not to be confused with Columbanus from three centuries earlier. He was a patron saint of Belgium, Ghent, and brewers. He was probably born in Ireland but moved with his followers to Ghent, Belgium, to escape raiding parties. There isn’t a great deal of information about him, and he’s not much remembered outside Belgium. He’s buried in the cathedral of Ghent, which at the time was known as the church of St. Bavo. His name is in the litany to be recited in Belgium during public emergencies.
This account is from Celtic Saints:
Saint Columbanus was probably an Irish abbot who led his community to Belgium following the constant raids of the Norsemen. On February 2, 957, Columbanus became a hermit in the cemetery near the church of Saint-Bavo at Ghent, where he acquired a wide reputation for holiness. He is buried in the cathedral and is one of the patrons of Belgium.
This one is from Omnium Sanctorum Hiberniae:
February 2 is the commemoration of a tenth-century Irish recluse at Ghent in Belgium. It seems, to judge from the footnotes to Canon O’Hanlon’s entry for Saint Columban, that he has been confused with his more famous namesake, Saint Columban (Columbanus) of Bobbio. It also seems that the saint is commemorated on the day of his enclosure as a hermit, February 2 in the the year 957, rather than on the day of his death, February 15. Canon O’Hanlon relies on the efforts of the seventeenth-century hagiologist, Father John Colgan, to uncover what was known about the Belgian Saint Columban.
Today is the birthday of Frank Senn (February 2, 1838-November 8, 1913) who was born in Mechtersheim, Germany, which today is known as Römerberg, but settled in St. Louis, Missouri with his parents in 1853. In Louisville, Kentucky, he opened the Frank Seen Brewery in 1874, but later sold it to his two brothers. In 1877, he took with a partner, Philip Ackermann, he opened a new brewery, the Frank Senn & Philip Ackermann Brewery. In 1892, they shortened it to the Senn & Ackermann Brewing Co., which it remained until being closed by prohibition.
Here’s a short bio, from his obituary, printed in the Western Brewer and Journal for July to December 1913.
Here’s a short history of the brewery, from the Encyclopedia of Louisville:
And another one from Germans in Louisville: A History:
After prohibition began, the building was abandoned, eventually becoming a scrapyard.
Today is the 49th birthday of Jamie Floyd, co-owner/brewer of Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene, Oregon. Jamie has been a fixture in the Oregon brewing scene for many years, having brewed at Steelhead Brewing, also in Eugene, before opening Ninkasi with Nikos Ridge in 2006. Join me in wishing Jamie a very happy birthday.