Resources for Beer History and Culture

The Oregon Hops and Brewing Archive has put together an amazing research guide to help explore beer history. I couldn’t top that if I tried, but I am compiling a list of books, scholarship, sources, and other resources that might help you find the beer history you’re looking for. Naturally, this list will spill over into some related topics like liquor, saloon culture, temperance/Prohibition, hops, etc.

This list will always be a work in progress. It’s not exhaustive, and I intend to add to it as I discover new resources myself (and remember the ones I’ve forgotten over the years). Know of something I’ve missed? Let me know at

I’ll add links wherever I can, but not everything is available digitally. Sometimes, you just need to sit down and read some old paper.

Select Media Articles

Note: Obviously I can’t link everything that’s out there, but these are pieces that I think contain historical relevance for researchers. Naturally, I’m a fan of my own work, too, but you can find that here.

Podcasts (coming soon!)

Archives, Collections, and Digital Exhibits

Online Resources, Blogs, Etc



  • Acitelli, Tom. The Audacity of Hops: The History of America’s Craft Beer Revolution (The Chicago Review Press, 2013).
  • Acitelli, Tom. Pilsner: How the Beer of Kings Changed the World (Chicago Review Press, 2020).
    • I reviewed this book for Brewery History. You can read it here.
  • Anderson, Will. From Beer to Eternity: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Beer (Lexington, MA: The Stephan Greene Press, 1987).
  • Apps, Kerry, Breweries of Wisconsin (Madison, 1992).
  • Arnold, J.P. and Frank Penman. History of the Brewing Industry and Brewing Science in America (Chicago: United States Brewer’s Association, 1933).
  • Baron, Stanley. Brewed in America: A History of Beer and Ale in the United States (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1962).
    • The classic text on American beer history. In many ways it’s outdated now, but it still holds useful information and guides a lot of prevailing narratives today. One of those books you need to know so that you can grow beyond it.
  • Blocker, Jack S., American Temperance Movements: Cycles of Reform (Boston: Twayne Publications, 1989).
  • Burns, Eric, The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2004).
  • Cochran, Thomas C. The Pabst Brewing Company: The History of an American Business (New York: New York University Press, 1948).
    • Another foundational text, like Baron.
  • Chapman, N.G. and  D.L. Brunsma, Beer and Racism: How Beer Became White, Why It Matters, and the Movements to Change It (Bristol University Press, 2020).
  • Crahan, Marcus, Early American Inebrietatis: Review of the Development of American Habits in Drink and the National Bias and Fixations Resulting Therefrom (Los Angeles: Zamorano Club, 1964).
  • Dannenbaum, Jed. Drink and Disorder: Temperance Reform in Cincinnati from the Washingtonian Revival to the WCTU (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1984).
  • Downard, William L. The Cincinnati Brewing Industry: A Social and Economic History (Columbus, OH: Ohio University Press, 1973).
  • Downard, William. Dictionary of the History of the American Brewing and Distilling Industries (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1980).
  • Duis, Perry, The Saloon: Public Drinking in Chicago and Boston 1880-1920 (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 1983).
  • Eymold, Ursula, editor. Bier. Macht. München: 500 Jahre Münchner Reinheitsgebot in Bayern. Süddeutsche Zeitung Edition. (Munich, Germany: Münchner Stadtmuseum, 2016).
    • Written in German.
  • Hackwood, Frank W.,  Inns, Ales, and Drinking Customs of Old England, (London, 1909).
  • Holian, Timothy, Over the Barrel: The Brewing History and Beer Culture of Cincinnati, 1800 to the Present, 2 volumes (St. Joseph, MO: Sudhaus Press, 2000).
  • Hoverson, Doug. Land of Amber Waters: The History of Brewing in Minnesota (University of Minnesota Press, revised ed 2007).
  • Hoverson, Doug. The Drink that Made Wisconsin Famous: Beer and Brewing in the Badger State (University of Minnesota Press, 2019)
  • Kerrigan, William, Johnny Appleseed and the American Orchard (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012).
    • Okay, okay, this one’s about cider. Get over it.
  • Krennmair, Andreas. Vienna Lager (Independently Published, 2020)
  • Lender, Mark Edward and James Kirby Martin, Drinking in America: A History (New York: The Free Press, 1982).
  • Lowry, Thomas P., Irish & German—Whiskey and Beer: Drinking Patterns in the Civil War (Thomas Lowry, 2011).
    • This book doesn’t have the detail the title might suggest, but it’s a great primer to researching alcohol in Civil War records, especially courts martial.
  • Maxwell, H. James and Bob Sullivan, Hometown Beer: A History of Kansas City’s Breweries (Kansas City, MO, 1999).
  • Meyer, Sabine, We Are What We Drink: The Temperance Battle in Minnesota (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2015).
  • Mittelman, Amy, Brewing Battles: The History of American Beer (Algora Publishing, 2007).
  • Morgan, Michael D., Over-the-Rhine: When Beer was King (Charleston, South Carolina: The History Press, 2010).
  • Murdock, Catherine Gilbert, Domesticating Drink: Women, men, and Alcohol in America, 1870-1940 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998).
  • Noon, Mark A., Yuengling: A History of America’s Oldest Brewery (McFarland, 2007).
  • Ogle, Maureen, Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer (Harcourt, 2006).
  • Oliver, Garret, editor. The Oxford Companion to Beer (Oxford University Press, 2012).
    • A truly amazing encyclopedia resource. Includes technical, historical, and cultural topics.
  • Patterson, Mark W. and Nancy H. Pullen, editors. The Geography of Beer: Regions, Environments, and Societies (Springer, 2014).
  • Plavchan, Ronald, A History of Anheuser Busch, 1852-1933 (New York: Arno Press, 1969).
    • To my knowledge, this is the last book written whose author got a (legitimate) look at Anheuser-Busch’s vaunted corporate archive.
  • Roberts, James, Drink, Temperance, and the Working Class in Nineteenth Century Germany (Boston: George Allen & Unwin, 1984).
  • Rorabaugh, William. The Alcoholic Republic: An American Tradition Oxford University Press, 1979).
    • A foundational text in alcohol history. He covers distilled liquor far more than beer (in fact I think he shortchanged beer a little), but you can’t understand American beer history without reading this book.
  • Rorabaugh, William. Prohibition: A Concise History (Oxford University Press, 2018).
    • The best quick overview of Prohibition you’ll find anywhere.
  • Salinger, Sharon, Taverns and Drinking in Early America (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002).
  • Schivelbusch, Wolfgang, Tastes of Paradise: A Social History of Spices, Stimulants, and Intoxicants. Trans by David Jacobson (New York: Pantheon Books, 1992).
  • Schlüter, Hermann, Brau-industrie und Brauarbeiter-Bewegung in Amerika (Internationalen Verband der Ver. Brauerei Arbeiter von Amerika , 1910).
    • Also published in English, titled The Brewing Industry and the Brewery Workers’ Movement in America (published by the International Union of United Brewery Workmen in America, 1910).
  • Sismondo, Christine, America Walks Into a Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops (Oxford University Press, 2011).
  • Skilnik, Bob, Beer: A History of Beer and Brewing in Chicago 1833-1978 (Barricade Books, 2006).
  • Smith, Gavin D., Beer: A Global History (University of Chicago Press, 2014).
  • Smith, Gregg, Beer in America: the early years, 1587-1840 : beer’s role in the settling of America and the birth of a nation (Boulder, CO: Siris Books, 1998).
  • Tyrrell, Ian, Sobering Up: From Temperance to Prohibition in Antebellum America, 1800-1860 (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1979).
  • Unger, Richard. Beer in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004).
  • Van Wieren, Dale. American Breweries II (West Point, Pennsylvania: Eastern Coast Breweriana Association, 1995).
    • This is an absolute must-have for any beer history researcher, as it’s a guide to most breweries in North America until 1995. That said, it’s not perfect. Sometimes entries are incorrect, and every now and then you’ll come across a brewery that’s not listed there. It’s a resource, not gospel, so double check things!
  • Volk, Kyle. Moral Minorities and the Making of American Democracy (Oxford University Press, 2014).
  • Wimberg, Robert J, Cincinnati Breweries (Cincinnati, Ohio: Ohio Book Store, 1989).
  • Yoder, Paton. Taverns and Travelers: Inns of the Early Midwest (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1969).

Articles and Book Chapters

  • Appel, Susan K. “Artificial Refrigeration and the Architecture of 19th-Century American Breweries.” IA: The Journal of the Society for Industrial Architecture Volume 16, Number 1 (1990): 21-38.
  • Appel, Susan K. “Building Milwaukee’s Breweries: Pre-Prohibition Brewery Architecture in the Cream City”, The Wisconsin Magazine of History, Vol. 78, No. 3 (Spring, 1995), 162-199 .
  • Appel, Susan K. “Buildings and Beer: Brewery Architecture of Cincinnati.” Queen City Heritage (Summer 1986): 3-20.
  • Appel, Susan K. “Chicago and the Rise of Brewery Architecture,” Chicago History 24 (Spring 1995): 4-19.
  • Bing, Jian, Pei-Jie Han, Wan-Qui Liu, Qi-Ming Wang, and Feng-Yan Bai. “Evidence for a Far East Asian Origin of Lager Beer Yeast.” Current Biology 24, Issue 10 (May 2014): R380-R381.
  • Brick, Greg. “Stahlmann’s Cellars: A Large American Lagering Cave from the Nineteenth Century,” Brewery History 155 (2013): 5-15.
  • Duis, Perry. “The Saloon in a Changing Chicago.” Chicago History 4 (Winter 1975): 214-224.
  • Eckhardt, Fred. “Brewing in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest,” Brewery History 141 (2011): 48-59.
  • Elzinga, Kenneth, “The Beer Industry,” in The Structure of American Industry, ed. Walter Adams (New York: Macmillan, 1971).
  • Haughwout, Sarah P., Robin A. LaVallee, and I-Jen P. Castle. “Apparent Per Capita Alcohol Consumption: National, State, and Regional Trends, 1977-2014.” (Surveillance Report #104, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health, United States Department of Health and Human Services, March 2016).
  • Hoverson, Doug. “‘Please give this matter your immediate attention:’ the complexity of Brewing in Minnesota and Wisconsin, 1933-1952,” Brewery History 141 (2011): 67-101.
  • Ingraham, Aukjen. “Henry Weinhard & Portland’s City Brewery,” Oregon Historical Quarterly Vol 102, No. 2 (Summer 2001): 180-195.
  • Kopp, Peter. “‘Hop Fever’ in the Willamette Valley: The Local and Global Roots of a Regional Specialty Crop,” Oregon Historical Quarterly, Vol 112, No. 4 (Winter 2011): 406-433.
  • Landis, Paul. “Seasonal Agricultural Labor in the Yakima Valley,” Monthly Labor Review Vol 45, No. 2 (August 1937): 301-311.
  • Mathews, Adam J. and Matthew T. Patton. “Exploring Place Marketing by American Microbreweries: Neolocal Expressions of Ethnicity and Race,” Journal of Cultural Geography 33, Issue 3 (2016): 275-309.
  • McCulla, Theresa. “Craft Beer’s Unlikely Alchemist,” Gastronomica Volume 19, Issue 4 (Winter 2019): 78–90. Available online!
  • O’Bannon, Patrick W., “Inconsiderable Progress: Commercial Brewing in Philadelphia before 1840” in Early American Technology: Making & Doing Things from the Colonial Era to 1850, edited by Judith A. McGaw. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1994.
  • Pilcher, Jeffrey. “‘Tastes Like Horse Piss’: Asian Encounters with European beer,” Gastronomica Volume 16, Issue 1 (Spring 2016): 28-40. Available Online!
  • Renner, Richard Wilson. “In a Perfect Ferment: Chicago, the Know-Nothings, and the Riot for Lager Beer.” Chicago History 5 (Fall 1976): 161-170.
  • Said, Zahr. “Craft Beer and the Rising Tide Effect: An Empirical Study of Sharing and Collaboration among Seattle’s Craft Breweries,” Lewis & Clark Law Review 23 (2018): 355-423.
  • Smith, Sylvia, John Farrish, Matthew McCarroll, and Elizabeth Huseman. “Examining the Craft Brewing Industry: Identifying Research Needs.” International Journal of Hospitality Beverage Management 1 (July 2017): 1-15.
  • Stack, Martin. “Local and Regional Breweries in America’s Brewing Industry, 1865-1920”, Business History Review 74 (Autumn 2000): 435-63.
  • Walsh, Walter. “Edmund Egan: Charleston’s Rebel Brewer,” The South Carolina Historical Magazine, Vol. 56, No. 4 (Oct 1955): 200-204.
  • Warder, Graham. “Temperance Nostalgia, Market Anxiety, and the Reintegration of Community in T.S. Arthur’s Ten Nights in a Bar-Room,” in Cultural Change and the Market Revolution in America, 1789-1860, edited by Scott Martin. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2005.

Dissertations and Theses

  • Alberts, Brian. “Beer to Stay: Brewed Culture, Ethnicity, and the Market Revolution.” PhD Dissertation, Purdue University, 2018.
  • Carpenter, Kim Newak. “‘Sechs Kreuzer Sind Genug Für Ein Bier!’ The Munich Beer Riot of 1844: Social Protest and Public Disorder in Mid-19th Century Bavaria.” PhD dissertation, Georgetown University, 1998.
  • Lindhurst, James.”History of the Brewing Industry in St. Louis 1804-1860″ (M.A. thesis, Washington University, 1939).
  • Mittelman, Amy “The Politics of Alcohol Production: The Liquor Industry and the Federal Government, 1862– 1900.” (Ph.D. dissertation, Columbia University, 1986).
  • Ockerman, Megan Elisabeth. “‘It’s the Water’: A History of the Olympia Brewing Company, 1896-1983,” (Master’s Thesis, Washington State University, 2017).

Published Primary Sources

  • Amerikanische Bierbrauer
  • American Brewers’ Gazette
  • Augenstein, Moritz. Augenstein’s Manual for Brewers and Distillers. Washington DC, 1872.
  • Bacon, J. Burnitz, “Lager Beer in America.” Frank Leslie’s Popular Monthly, August 1882, Vol 14, Issue 2.
  • Bickerdye, John, The Curiosities of Ale & Beer: An Entertaining History (London: Swan Sonnenschein, 1889).
  • Byrn, Marcus Lafayette, The Complete Practical Brewer (Philadelphia, 1852).
  • Coppinger, Joseph, The American Practical Brewer and Tanner (New York, 1815).
  • Dorchester, Daniel, The Liquor Problem in All Ages (New York: Phillips and Hunt, 1884).
  • Feuchtwanger, Lewis, Fermented Liquors: A Treatise on Brewing, Distilling, and Rectifying (New York, 1867).
  • Gray, Barry and John Savage, Ale in Prose and Verse (New York, 1866).
  • Ham, John, The Theory and Practice of Brewing from Malted and Unmalted Corn, and from Potatos (London, 1829).
  • How to Carve, Serve a Dinner, and Brew [Norman Munro’s Ten Cent Handy Books, No. 15, New York, n.d.]
  • Krebs, Roland and Percy J. Orthwein. Making Friends is Our Business: 100 Years of Anheuser Busch (Privately printed c. 1953).
  • Marchant, W.T., In Praise of Ale; or, Songs, ballads, epigrams, & anecdotes relating to beer, malt, and hops; with some curious particularls concerning ale-wives and brewers, drinking-clubs and customs (London: G. Redway, 1888).
  • McCulloch, John. Distillation, Brewing and Malting (San Francisco, 1867).
  • Morewood, Samuel, A Philosophical and Statistical History of the Inventions and Customs of Ancient and Modern Nations in the Manufacture and Use of Inebriating Liquors (Dublin, 1838).
  • One Hundred Years of Brewing (Chicago: H.S. Rich & Co, 1901).
  • Proceedings of the United States Brewers Association
  • The Western Brewer
    • The American Breweriana Association is currently digitizing issues of the Western Brewer (subscription required). To my knowledge, hard copies are only available in 3 locations in the United States: The Beer Institute in Washington DC, the Chicago History Museum, and the Anheuser-Busch corporate library.
  • Thomann, Gallus. Documentary History of the United States Brewers’ Association (New York: United States Brewers’ Association, 1896).