Circa 1950 Photo of the Brewery Front

Front of Brewery circa 1950Mark W. Rummel posted this photo on January 13, 2012 in the Facebook Group “You know you are from Sebewaing, MI when …”.  This picture is about 1950 and shortly after Old Style and Stock Ale were dropped from the product line and replaced with other labels such as Sebewaing, Sport, and so on.  The chimney was extended higher in 1955 and since the pheasant promoted the new labels on the front of the building, the estimated date is from the late 1940’s to the early 1950’s.

The comments below are in response to the Facebook post:

Sharon J Giroux I have a couple of those bottles and because its part of my childhood growing up in Sebewaing I love having them

Philip C Bachman We used to fish behind the brewery in the River….warm water coming from the brewery would attach perch….also remember the piles of beer bottles behind the brewery……my grandfather worked there for several years.

Karen Joyce Hofmeister Prime When we got married we got our beer for our reception from there–common sense–no better place to get it!!

Betty Guenther Will be auctioning off an original bottle at the Valley Lutheran HS annual auction Feb. 25 in Saginaw

Betty Guenther and it’s full but maybe not safe to drink

John Schneider i remember the label on the right….on the two brown borders going up and down on each side of the label you could tell when the beer was actually bottled….it had numbers representing the month and date…..not sure of the year tho….but there would be these punch marks over the numbers that would indicate that month and date….funny when you see something like that and everything lights up again!

Mark W Rummel John, I’ve seen those numbers for (honestly) 50 years and I never knew what they were for. Thanks for the info!

Brian K. Schwartz My Grandfather, Frank, used to haul it when he worked for Bergman Trucking. Dad has one of the back uniform emblems hanging up in his shop.

John Schneider all that work that went into that bottle back then….worth more than 2 cents to me!

Deborah Wissner My dad had a bowling shirt with a Sebewaing beer “pheasant” applique on it. Wonder if that’s still around at the home place??

Erma Rummel I got two bottle cozies with the top right label for Christmas.

Mark W Rummel There’s a door from a Sebewaing Beer truck hanging on the wall at Shaggy J’s restaurant in downtown Pigeon (coincidentally in our former newspaper office… GREAT restaurant!

Joanne Reinbold My Grandpa Muelrath from Bach worked at the Brewery for many years. There’s a picture somewhere in the family of him receiving a watch when he retired

Janet Fuerst Reithel John Schneider – Very interesting information on the labels having numbers on each side of the label. I have several Sebewaing Beer Bottles, 1 POM bottle, 2 Sport bottles, and 1 Golden Pheasant Bottles. The Sebewaing Beer and Sport bottles have the numbers 1-12 on the right side of the label and numbers 10-20-30 and 1-9 on the left side of the bottle, example one label is punched 2 on right side and 10 and 7 punched on left side, meaning it was bottled February 17. I did not find and indication to the year. The POM bottle and Golden Pheasant labels do not having markings on the labels. Again, very interesting!

Thank you to Mark W. Rummel for posting the photo and all of those who took the time to comment in Facebook.

Great Shot of the Sebewaing Brewery circa 1979

Front of Brewery circa 1979This photo of the Sebewaing Brewing Company was taken shortly before demolition began.  If you look at the window above the word “Sebewaing” the wooden middle pane has fallen to a 30 degree angle.  This piece of wood can be seen a different positions throughout the 1970’s.  Notice the boarded up window for the Keg and Rack Room along with boarded up doors for the same as well as the Main Office just around the corner from the painted pheasant.

This photo was posted by Janet Feurst Reithel on October 6, 2011 in the Facebook Group “You know you are from Sebewaing, MI when …”.  It has the distinction of being the first Sebewaing Brewery related photo to be posted to that group.  Here are the brewery related comments from people reminiscing in response:

Scott N Tracy Guillett-Goodale In what year did they tear the brewery down?

Timothy S. Welther 1985, I do believe..

Janet Fuerst Reithel My inefficiency, I did not date the picture. Other pictures taken with the camera (a Kodak instant camera) that I did label with the date were taken from 1979-1981 so the picture was taken during that time frame. Tracy, was your dad Gerry Guillett? If so, he was my cousin. His mother and my dad were brother and sisters.

Scott N Tracy Guillett-Goodale oh wow Janet yes that was my dad!! your Gene’s sister??

Brian K. Schwartz Awesome pic! My Grandfather, Frank Schwartz used to haul beer.

Scott N Tracy Guillett-Goodale Fond memories of the old town…i miss living there at times!

Lori Fisher The brewery seemed so much bigger when I was a kid.

Chuck Kunisch Ok time for another quiz : for you know you are from Sebewaing group. How many types of Sebewaing Beer can you name. And for bonus what type( i.e. Ale, lager) was each beer?

Kyle Dutcher ok, the ones I know of were STOCK ALE, OLD STYLE, SPORT (brown), CLUB (lager), SEBEWAING, GOLDEN PHEASANT, AND SPORT BEER…..Not sure if there were others or not. I still have in my possession a CLUB beer case.

Chuck Kunisch Nicely done there was also POM too “Pride of Michigan”

Brian K. Schwartz If anyone ever gets over to Shaggy J’s in Pigeon, they have a door from one of the beer trucks hanging on the wall.

John Schneider mark…..finally picked up that paper your dad wrote on the brewery from Rod this past sat…..when I’m finished with my project I’ll email picture….better yet I’ll bring it along to the next get together….the final touch was your dad’s signature on it! thanks…meaningful to me

Julie Wenzel Beuschel Bricks from the brewery form a small wall in the village park. My sister, Jan Wenzel, painted a pheasant on it when it was first put up. I’m pretty sure it needed to be repainted over the years, and someone else did that.

Kim Schulz In the Detroit Brewery (somewhere by Comerica park) there is a plaque and a pasteurizer that says it was especially built for the Sebewaing Brewing Co. It’s right when you walk in the door. Very cool… I have a picture of it.

Brent Kundinger That’s Bill Thede’s Travel-all in front of it. I used to ride in that going up to their cabin in Curran for snowmobiling. Scott Thede and I now live in Big Rapids.

Alice Pommerenke For all you ‘young kids’ – in the 30’s we had a sledding hill behind the brewery in the winter time. They would ice the top at night to make it a great start! How do I know? I broke my collar bone slipping on it. Also out front (for a short time) was a cage of lions that would roar when we walked by on our way to town. One year a Christmas tree out there by the sidewalk trimmed w/12 oz Sport bottles, think I still have one.

Scott N Tracy Guillett-Goodale I kinda remember the brewery,gosh that was a longggggggggg time ago!! lol

Robin Gaeth Nice pic… my dad worked there.

Jacklyn Hughes My uncle, Joe Kling, worked there part time when he wasn’t barbering…..he said they could drink all the beer they wanted when they had their breaks! Part of the perks I guess. he’s still alive, by the way….94 years old.

Thank you to Janet Fuerst Reithel for posting the photo and all of those who took the time to comment in Facebook.

Website Stats for The First Year

How time flies!   It has been just over a year since the launching of this webpage.  Can you believe that the website has had visitors from 62 countries and 12,413 views?  This site is my most popular and continues to average at least 500 visitors per month.  Checkout the snapshot graphic below for more information.

Oct 2013-Oct 2014 Website StatsThere are maAdditionsny people interested in beer and brewery history.  With the name “Sebewaing” used in an eBay or Google search, results are quick and specific to this small town.

Though I am a Spring and Summer person, I have been looking froward to Fall for the time to expand this website.  Some of this planned work is adding more items that are part of the family collection, researching and writing more articles, and adding some additional content areas.  Until then, please come back often to see what has been added.  Like the snapshot picture to the left, look for the box labeled “Additions & Changes” on the front page for the latest updates.

Hats Off Award

Tribune LogoThe Huron Daily Tribune named this website in their “Our hat’s off . . .” column and sited these efforts to thoroughly capture the history of the Sebewaing Brewing Company.  This was published in a June 2014 paper and can be read online at this link.

I want to express my appreciation and thanks to Seth Stapleton and Tim Neuman of the Tribune staff for their efforts in working with me.  Top notch job gentlemen, you guys rock!

Sebewaing Beer and eBay

When it comes to eBay, the most popular items available for auction with the name Sebewaing no doubt has to be brewery related items. Today, there are fifty-two entries! Everything from single labels and bottle caps to Pasteurizer plateposter board presentations of many different labels. Some of the specialty machinery built for the brewery like a pasteurizer had a special plate (pictured) on it from the company. This item is listed at $850 or best offer!  It is amazing what collectors may pay for a piece of history.  Proxy cards, payroll checks, and other business papers also make appearances on eBay.  I have seen my grandfather, Otto H. Thede’s business card with the title “Bottle house Superintendent” from time to time.

How did these people obtain these items?  Did they purchase them from others?  Did they visit the brewery after it closed and search for relics knowing one day they would be worth some money?  I remember the floors littered with papers, labels, bottle caps, and so many other items that would be considered valuable today.  The blue plastic barrel caps along with the foil were in several brown cardboard boxes in the Keg Storage Room just waiting for someone to help themselves.  I remember empty barrels of various sizes in this same area.  If I were just a bit more business savvy as I entered my young teenage years living next to the brewery!  At least these relics did not end up getting hauled away in a dump truck or buried during the demolition years that started in 1979.

Good luck to all the eBay sellers and buyers.  Keep the brewery memories alive.