…more American than apple pie. In the last 250 years, beer has at one point or another been a local, individual craft and a homogenized product of capitalism. Beer has been considered both healthy nourishment and sinful poison. It’s been legal, illegal, an activist’s tool, and the beneficiary of million-dollar ad campaigns. Some have used beer to include, others to exclude. Beer is culture brewed.
I’m a historian who uses beer and brewing to explore the American experience—and to help us all appreciate what we drink a little better. On Brewed Culture, I share my journey through the world of beer history and invite you to come along. As an experienced scholar, communicator, educator, and consultant, I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate beer’s fascinating past into brewery spaces, museums, classrooms, and special events.
If you have a story to explore or a project to pursue, get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I write and host podcast episodes! As part of Good Beer Hunting‘s Source Material series, my podcast hoists a pint glass between past and present to see how beer refracts our perspective. You can find episodes on Apple, Google, Spotify, and anywhere else the GBH podcast is available…or just scroll down! Each episode will be made available on this page.
Worth Saving: Brewery Records and the Future
I sit down with three archivists who specialize in the preservation of beer history to talk about brewery records and how to save them from oblivion. This episode gets into the weeds just a little bit, but it’s a message the brewing industry needs to hear.
That Dog Won’t Hunt: Charleston Beer’s Past, Present, and Future
Alongside Jamaal Lemon and Mike Stein, we discuss our work to recover the names of erased Black brewery workers in one of Charleston’s oldest breweries. Specifically, we talk to brewery owners and artists who helped up honor this history with a historically-minded beer and the first ever Tek Cyear uh Da Root festival, which took place in Charleston on November 4, 2021. This work relates to our earlier written Tek Cyear uh Da Root series.Continue reading “Podcast”
I love using beer history to engage the present. Whether via individual public talks, collaborations, or writing, I’m always looking for new connections, new opportunities, and new audiences.
Read on to learn about some specific projects, but I’m always looking for new connections and opportunities, such as:
- Freelance research, writing, or podcasting
- Museum exhibits
- Historically/community-minded beers or collaborations
- Events and event series
- Podcast and other media appearances
- Public talks, presentations, discussions
- Short classes and other educational opportunities
My latest article covers the Busch-Lasker Controversy of 1922. While Prohibition kept his brewery in dire straits, August Busch discovered that the U.S. Shipping Board, a government agency, was selling alcohol on its passenger ships. The resulting media scandal pitched Busch against a seasoned ad man trying to survive Prohibition as hard as he was.
I’m a trained historian, communicator, educator, and consultant who uses beer’s past to connect to its present. Born and educated in the Midwest, my wife and I now live near Seattle, Washington. When I’m not investigating beer history and raising Joey and Zoe, our two children, I’m working with breweries, nonprofits, other experts, and publishers to share my insights as widely as possible.
History is meant to do more than fill up bookshelves, and the proverbial pint glass offers not only an engaging perspective of the past but also an accessible way to bring it to just about anyone. Breweries, museums, educators, and others can use beer’s distinct historic role to tell the stories that matter to them most—even stories that may not directly be about beer at all.
My ability to activate the past using beer has led to engaging articles, museum exhibits, historical collaborate beers, dozens of public events, and more. If you have a project you’d like to pursue, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com.
Keep reading for more of my story.