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Historic Beer Birthday: Joseph Metcalfe

Today is the birthday of Joseph Metcalfe (February 28, 1832-?). There’s very little information I could find about Joseph Metcalfe. He appears to have been born in Yorkshire, England and was a brewer who owned breweries in both Louisville, Kentucky and New Albany, Indiana, which is just across the Ohio River from Louisville.

He’s mentioned, curiously, in Germans in Louisville, in the prehistory of the town, from a German perspective.

And again similarly in an Encyclopedia of Louisville:

Here’s the story from

Colonel Joseph Metcalfe started a brewery in New Albany in 1847 which he sold to William Grainger in 1856 who sold it to Paul Reising in 1857. Reising sold it to Martin Kaelin in 1861 who renamed it Main Street Brewery. This was a two-story building of 40×60 feet with two lagering cellars. It employed five men who made 3,600 bbls by 1868.

And this is how he’s mentioned in Hoosier Beer: Tapping Into Indiana Brewing History:

Tavern Trove has a slightly different timeline for the brewery, as do a number of sources.

Joseph Metcalfe Brewery 1847-1857
William Grainger 1857-aft 1857
Paul Reising Aft. 1857-1861
Martin Kaelin, Main Street Brewery 1861-1882
Louis Schmidt, Main Street Brewery 1882-1883
Hornung and Atkins, Main Street Brewery 1883-1886
Jacob Hornung, Main Street Brewery 1886-1889
Indiana Brewing Co. 1889-1895
Pank-Weinmann Brewing Company. 1895-1899
Merged with the Southern Indiana Ice and Beverage Co. of New Albany, Indiana in 1899

This is Metcalfe’s brewery shortly after he had sold it to Paul Reising.

The brewery crew when it was the Paul Riesing Brewery.

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