Monday, December 15, 2014

Then and Now: Kuenzl’s Gambrinus Brewery

Click on the image to enlarge it.
The top photograph was taken circa 1893. The photo below it was taken yesterday morning.

Seen in the top photo wearing a hat and with his arms resting on the fence is Lorenz Kuenzl, the owner and brewmaster of the Gambrinus Brewery. Standing beside him is his wife, Barbara. The home behind them also appears in the newer photo. It is located at 1225 Harney Avenue.

The older photo shows the Gambrinus Brewery along with its outbuildings, and the brewery’s stone and brick icehouse. The brewery was built by Gottlieb Ecke in 1868. Lorenz Kuenzl took over the brewery in 1875. The capacity of the brewery was approximately 20,000 barrel annually.

In 1894, Kuenzl merged the Gambrinus Brewery with Horn & Schwalm’s Brooklyn Brewery and John Glatz and Son’s Union Brewery to form the Oshkosh Brewing Company. Following the merger, brewing operations at the Gambrinus Brewery were gradually discontinued. Thereafter, the location was used primarily for bottling beer.

Most activities at the Gambrinus brewery had ceased by 1907. The brewery was vacated in 1912 after the completion of a new brewery by the Oshkosh Brewing Company. The buildings of the Gambrinus Brewery were demolished in 1914.

For more on the history of the Gambrinus Brewery visit this earlier post.

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