beer exhibitBefore Red Bull and Monster Drink the victual of health around Davenport was a frothy mug of suds. There weren’t national brands in refrigerated trucks endorsed by athletes and scantily-clad models in the first half of the century. Each town had their own local brands, crafted by mustachioed laborers using recipes from the Fatherland.

For the 20 percent of Davenport Germans, it was a beverage steeped in tradition and culture, and one of the few remaining creature comforts they could control. They did so with a flourish as a number of brands sprung up in Davenport, including Mathias Frahm and Son, Koehelr and Lange (also known as the Arsenal Brewery), Littig Brohers, and Zoeller Brothers.

All of this information is featured in the latest exhibit at the German American Heritage Museum as you look at snapshots of the malthouse workers, tavern operators, and ancient conetop cans and vessels.

I found it to be a fascinating little tour and a great excuse to visit the GAHC for the first time, at the low Depression-era price of $2.

One Thought on “The Original Energy Drink

  1. Karen on July 21, 2009 at 9:23 am said:

    So true that beer is the original energy drink. Monks brewed beer to drink during the long winter and the 40 day lenten period. Belgian Trappists still brew some of the world’s finest.

    The display at the GAHC is worth the cost of admission. Sorry to have missed the brewing talk by Brad Sturgeon a professor of chemistry at Monmouth College last week. Maybe he will come back for a repeat performance.

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