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Historic Beer Birthday: John H. Meyer

Today is the birthday of John H. Meyer (September 15, 1818-1890 or after). Meyer was born in Oldenburg, Germany, but moved to Covington, Kentucky when he was 19. Julius Deglow founded what would become the Bavarian Brewing Co. in 1866. In 1879, John H. Meyer briefly bought a controlling interest in the brewery and for a time it was called the John Meyer Brewery. There’s not much more information I could find out about John H. Meyer, just one group photo and I was unable even to confirm when he died.

John H. Meyer is man on the far right in the front row.

The Wikipedia page for the Bavarian Brewing Co. mentions Meyer, but he’s not even considered one of the most important people in the history of the brewery, which was open for 100 years.

After the brewery was established as DeGlow & Co., new ownership interests within just a couple of years resulted in several change to its name beginning in 1868, including DeGlow, Best & Renner. However, in 1873, it was established as the Bavarian Brewery Co. Over the next several years the brewery operated under this name, but ownership interests varied. John Meyer obtained controlling interest and the brewery operated under his name for a short time, starting in 1879. Then in 1882, a German immigrant named William Riedlin, who established a saloon and beer hall called Tivoli Hall in the Over The Rhine area of Cincinnati, entered into partnership with John Meyer. It operated as the Meyer-Riedlin Brewery before Riedlin purchased controlling interest in the brewery from Meyer, incorporated the business under its former name and became president in 1889.

The Kenton County Public Library also has a history of the Bavarian Brewery, and again Meyer figured only very briefly in the first paragraph.

Bavarian Brewery can be traced back to the year 1866 when Julius Deglow and Charles L. Best began operating a small brewery on Pike Street in Lewisburg. In 1869, the brewery officially became known as Bavarian. William Riedlin and John Meyer were the next owners of the brewery. They purchased Bavarian in 1882. Seven years later, Riedlin became the sole owner. Anton Ruh was hired as the brew master.

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