Friday, June 21, 2013

Beer Ads in Oshkosh No. 13: One Hundred Years Ago Today – The Peoples Brewing Company of Oshkosh

From the Oshkosh Daily Northwestern; June 21, 1913
Here’s a repost of a beauty that’s 100 years old today. It appeared in the Oshkosh Daily Northwestern on June 21, 1913 upon the opening of the new Peoples Brewing Company at what is now 1506 South Main St. in Oshkosh. It’s a nice summation of what the new brewery was all about and includes an introduction to the first two beers the brewery offered. Asterweiss, was their pasteurized, light-bodied, low-alcohol, beer sold in clear bottles wrapped in paper. How elegant. More interesting was the “Standard” beer. This would eventually come to be known as Aristos. It was a full-bodied, unpasteurized draught beer aged in wooden barrels and served from brown, pint bottles or wooden kegs. This is the one that would be the big seller in Oshkosh and win over a large slice of the City’s saloon trade.

There’s also an interesting subtext to this ad. In the lower center portion of the ad are the words, “A Trial Is All We Ask.” It was the brewery’s way of asking the public to disregard the rumors being spread by its cross-street rival, the Oshkosh Brewing Company (OBC). In the months leading up to the opening of Peoples Brewing, OBC had done what it could to smear the reputation of the new brewery. OBC accused Peoples of making bad beer even before a drop of it had been sold out of the new brewery. At Peoples they shrugged off the slander. Early ads for Peoples asked Oshkoshers to decide for themselves if their beer was any good. The new brewery received the answer it wanted. Peoples Brewing was a success from the start and would outlast the Oshkosh Brewing Company.

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