Pabst Brewing Company (Signed by Gustave and Fred Pabst)
Pabst Brewing Company (Signed by Gustave and Fred Pabst)
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|Company||Pabst Brewing Company
|Certificate Type||Capital Stock
|Date Issued||May 8, 1908
|Printer||Milwaukee Litho Co.
11 1/2" (w) by 10 1/2" (h)
||Show the exact certificate you will receive|
|Additional Details||Signed by Gustave and Fred Pabst
The original brewery was founded in 1844 as The Empire Brewery, later Best and Company, by brewer Jacob Best. The brewery was run by Jacob Sr. and his sons Phillip, Charles, Jacob Jr., and Lorenz. Phillip took control of the company in 1860. They started the brewery on Chestnut Street Hill in Milwaukee with a capacity of 18 barrels. Later, in 1863, Frederick Pabst, a steamship captain and son-in-law of Phillip Best, bought 50% of Phillip Best Brewing, and assumed the role of vice president. In 1866, Best's other daughter, Lisette, married Emil Schandein, to whom Best sold the remaining half of the business. This move made Frederick Pabst president, and Lisette's husband vice-president. Lisette Schandein took over as vice-president of the company through 1894 after her husband's death.
By 1874 Phillip Best Brewing Co. was the nation's largest brewer. The brewery's best seller was a lager, Best Select, which began public sales in 1875.
During much of the 20th century, Pabst was run by Harris Perlstein, who was named president by Frederick Pabst in 1932 after a merger of Pabst Brewing and Premier Malt Products Co. (the latter of which Perlstein had been president). Perlstein emphasized research and innovation; under his direction, Pabst worked with American Can Company to produce the first beer cans, worked to create product consistency among multiple location breweries, and invested heavily in advertising and promotion. In 1954, Perlstein was named Chairman, and served until 1972; he then served as Chairman of the Executive Committee until his retirement in 1979. Pabst's sales reached a peak of 15.6 million barrels in 1978 before they entered into a steep decline.
During Prohibition, Pabst stopped making beer and switched to cheese production, selling more than 8 million pounds of Pabst-ett Cheese. When Prohibition ended, the company went back to selling beer, and the cheese line was sold to Kraft.
Pabst was renowned in Milwaukee for its brewery tours. Visitors to Pabst's tour were rewarded with sometimes bottomless glasses of beer at its end-of-tour Sternewirt Pub. Complete with a statue of Captain Frederick Pabst and waitresses pouring from pitchers of Pabst Blue Ribbon, Pabst Bock, and Andeker, the pub was popular with tourists and locals alike, especially students from nearby Marquette University and the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.
Paul Kalmanovitz, a self-made beer and real-estate baron, purchased the Pabst Brewing company in 1985 for $63 million in a hostile takeover through the auspices of his holding company S&P Co.
Frederick Pabst's Signature on Verso
Frederick Pabst was born on March 28, 1836, in the village of Nikolausrieth, in the Province of Saxony, in the Kingdom of Prussia. Friedrich was the second child of Gottlieb Pabst, a local farmer, and his wife, Johanna Friederike.
In 1848, he emigrated with his parents to the United States, settling first in Milwaukee, and then Chicago. The following year his mother died in a cholera epidemic. In Chicago, Frederick and his father had to eke out a living. For a while they worked as waiters and busboys. Frederick soon gave this up, however. Because he had enjoyed his voyage to America, he decided to become a cabin-boy on a Lake Michigan steamer. By the time he was 21, Pabst had earned his pilot's license, and was captain of one of these vessels. In this capacity, he met Phillip Best, the owner of a small but prosperous brewery founded by his father, Jacob Best, in 1844 in Milwaukee. Pabst married Best's daughter, Maria, on March 25, 1862.
For the next year and a half, Pabst continued to ply the waters of Lake Michigan as a ship's captain, until an accident in December 1863 led to a change in career. While trying to bring his craft into Milwaukee harbor, Pabst's ship ran aground. A short while later, Pabst purchased half of Best's brewing company.
In 1864, when Pabst was taken into partnership in his father-in-law's brewery, he began to study the details of the business. After obtaining a thorough mastery of the art of brewing, Pabst turned his attention to extending the market for the beer and before long had raised the output of the Best brewery to 100,000 barrels a year. The brewery was eventually converted into a public company and its capital repeatedly increased in order to cope with the continually increasing trade. He became president of the corporation in 1873. Later, the brewing company's name was changed to the Pabst Brewing Company.
In 1889, Pabst spent $30,000 to take advantage of prime shoreline along Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin's unique location, just north of the city of Milwaukee, by developing a popular lakeshore resort, which he called the Pabst Whitefish Bay Resort.
As many as 10,000 visitors would come to the resort on a summer day by horse and buggy, railroad, trolley or excursion steamer. They came to enjoy the scenic view, to ride the Ferris wheel, attend daily concerts (double concerts on Sunday), rent row boats, watch outdoor movies, drink Pabst's beer and dine on fine fare, including five types of whitefish netted daily in the adjoining bay. The resort's popularity faded in 1914 at the start of World War I and the park was closed. In 1915 the land was subdivided into residential lots.
The brewing company's renowned "Blue Ribbon" label was introduced in the 1890s. The beer never actually won a blue ribbon. During some festivals (i.e. World's Fair in Chicago), Pabst placed a blue ribbon around his Best beer (named after founder Phillip Best) so it would stand out among the others. People would start identifying the beer as the Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. Instead of correcting the public, Pabst just wisely renamed it. He trademarked the Blue Ribbon in 1900.
Pabst built a fourteen-story Pabst Building in downtown Milwaukee and also helped organize the Wisconsin National Bank, in 1893. Pabst purchased the old Nunnemacher Grand Opera House, located opposite the Milwaukee City Hall, in 1890, and turned it into the Das Neue Deutsche Stadt-Theater (The New German City Theater), but it was destroyed in a fire. Pabst ordered it rebuilt at once and the newly named Pabst Theater opened in 1895. It still is in use today.
The Pabst Mansion along Wisconsin Avenue is a well-known Milwaukee tourist attraction and was the Pabst family home from 1892 to 1908.
Gustave Pabst was a brewer, businessman, conservationist, and the son of Frederick Pabst.
He entered his father's brewing business in 1890, and in 1904 became president of the Pabst Brewing Company. He served in this capacity until 1921 when he turned his attention to real estate developments, and for a number of years directed the extensive business of the Ventnor Corporation.
Pabst was also a member of the board of directors of many other Milwaukee business and banking establishments, and in his later years devoted his time to the propagation of upland game birds and the scientific breeding of Holstein dairy cattle.
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