The Nation's Capital Brewmaster: Christian Heurich and His Brewery, 1842-1956

The Nation's Capital Brewmaster: Christian Heurich and His Brewery, 1842-1956

by Mark Elliott Benbow


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Christian Heurich (1842–1945) was not only Washington D.C.’s most successful brewer, he was the world’s oldest, with 90 years’ experience. He walked across central Europe learning his craft, survived a shipboard cholera epidemic, recovered from malaria and worked as a roustabout on a Caribbean banana boat—all by age 30. Heurich lived most of his life in Washington, becoming its largest private landowner and opening the city’s largest brewery. He won a “beer war” against his rivals and his beers won medals at World’s Fairs.
He was trapped in Europe while on vacation at the start of both World Wars, once sleeping through an air raid, and was accused of being a German spy plotting to assassinate Woodrow Wilson. A notably odd episode: when they began to tear down his old brewery to build the Kennedy Center, the wrecking ball bounced off the walls.
Drawing on family papers and photos, the author chronicles Heurich’s life and the evolving beer industry before and after Prohibition.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781476665016
Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
Publication date: 12/06/2017
Pages: 286
Sales rank: 822,750
Product dimensions: 6.90(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Mark Elliott Benbow is an assistant professor of American History at Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface 1

Introduction 5

1. Youth and Immigration: 1842–1870 9

2. Early Years in D.C.: 1871–1879 34

3. Moving Up in Business and Society: 1880–1894 56

4. High Point for Heurich Brewing: 1895–1900 95

Between pages 122 and 123 are 12 color plates containing 22 photographs

5. The New Century: 1901–1914 123

6. War and Prohibition: 1914–1920 158

7. Rebirth and the Final Act: 1921–1945 186

8. Afterwards: 1946–1962 223

Chapter Notes 235

Bibliography 253

Index 263

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