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1796 Maryland's 2nd congressional district special election

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A special election was held in Maryland's 2nd congressional district on April 18, 1796 to fill a vacancy left by the resignation of Gabriel Duvall (DR) on March 28, 1796.

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  • ✪ Capital Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in Washington, D.C.
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Transcription

>> Good afternoon. Welcome to the National Archives and to the William G. McGowan theatre, and a special welcome to those of you who are watching this program on our YouTube channel. I'm Bruce, and I'm a senior curator here at the National Archives on the exhibit staff and also the curator of our exhibition Spirited Republic, Alcohol in American History. Before I introduce our speaker, I want to remind you about some upcoming noon lectures. On Friday, June 5th, that's a couple days from today at noon, H.W. Brands will discuss his new biography, Reagan: A Life. He followed Reagan from small town Illinois to Hollywood and into the White House. A book signing will follow that program. Then on Monday, June 15th at noon, Professor Robert Pallitto will discuss how Magna Carta's legacy in the United States reaches back to the nation's founding with even the colonial charters reflecting its influences and the principles that protect the rights and liberty of citizenry of and, again, a book lecture -- I'm sorry, a book signing will follow after that lecture. Back in the 1980s, I was -- I had just joined the exhibit staff at the National Archives and I was asked to do an exhibit about the history of Washington, D.C. And I was very surprised to find out that Washington, D.C. was a beer-making town. And we ended up displaying some Brewers' tools and a tap and a photograph from the Heurich Brewery. And it's one of those subjects that I wanted to get back to, so I was especially happy to hear Garrett Peck was going to be here to discuss "Capital Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in Washington, D.C." Garrett Peck is an author, historian and tour guide. He leads tours through the Smithsonian Associates and also the Temperance Tour of Prohibition related sites in Washington, D.C, which has been featured on C-SPAN Book TV and also on the History Channel program "Ten Things You Didn't Know About" with punk rock legend Henry Rollins. His sixth book, Walt Whitman in Washington, D.C: The Civil War and America's Great Poet was published in March of this year. Peck was involved with the D.C. Craft Bartenders Guild in lobbying the D.C. City Council to have the Rickey declared Washington, D.C.'s native cocktail in 2011. He researched and pinpointed the Washington Brewery site at the Navy Yard and is especially proud that Green Hat Gin is named after a character Peck wrote about in his book Prohibition in Washington, D.C, that is congressional bootlegger George Cassiday. He's at the Library of Congress, delivered the Overbeck lecture and speaks at historical societies, libraries and trade associations. He's on the board of the Woodrow Wilson House and the Arlington Historical Society and a member of the Association of the Oldest Inhabitants of Washington, D.C. You don't look that old, but...A native Californian and VMI and George Washington University graduate, he lives in Arlington, Virginia. Please welcome Garrett Peck. [Applause] >> Garrett Peck: Thank you, Bruce, and thank you to everyone for coming out. Bruce put together a fabulous exhibit dealing with Americans and alcohol. This is one of the most interesting questions we have in American history, this idea that somehow we're going to take out alcohol of the equation, even though America was founded effectively as a wet republic and we have this lengthy temperance movement, a century long social reform movement that wanted to keep Americans from drinking. They got the 18th amendment passed and 14 years later we got the 21st amendment which repealed Prohibition. It's a question to ask, how did we get into this mess and how do we get out of it? And I examined that in two earlier books, one called the Prohibition Hangover and specifically a local book about how alcohol and Prohibition unraveled here in the nation's capital, and that was Prohibition in Washington, D.C, and then I turned my attention over to the question of beer. The Brewers were once the second largest employer in Washington, D.C. after the federal government. Brewing took a lot of manpower back then. Today not so much, but things are automated today in brewing. But it was a significant part of the city's economy and local culture and oftentimes as well what happened here also is magnified across the rest of the country and we'll talk about a lot of the trends here, not just D.C. but you see things happening in other cities around the country. To brewing in D.C. has had this remarkable resurgence in the last four and a half years, it's pretty amazing since Port City opened up in Alexandria, followed by D.C. Brau and we've seen an explosion of microbreweries around the capital region, so it's been amazing. I got here in 1994 and D.C. back then was definitely a -- well, if you want a good beer, it was Yuengling and Rolling Rock, but mostly we drank wine and cocktails. D.C. was not a beer town. In the last couple years we are finally embracing beer again as part of our culture. In fact, beer was here from the beginning, virtually the beginning of the city there were breweries here, and like I said, they were the second largest employer in the city itself. Brewing in the national capital region began in old town Alexandria by a Scottish immigrant named Andrew Wales, and in fact there is an alley way named after him in Old Town. It's the Fitzgerald warehouse, the oldest existing building on the Alexandria waterfront. He came from Scotland and settled in Alexandria in 1770. That's when commercial brewing began in the D.C. region. So I think we really hold our heads high compared to other cities. D.C. started brewing in 2011, in fact we started more than two centuries earlier than that. We acquit ourselves pretty well here in this regard. Wales has a fascinating story because in the American Revolution he was a Tory and got involved in a prison break with a number of POWs and got in trouble and had to leave Alexandria for a period of time and came back after the war and resumed his brewing. He operated until 1798, so 28 years this man brewed in old town Alexandria. We do have a street marker here for this important individual. People like Wales and the early Brewers were English or Scottish and, of course, the kind of beer they made was English style ales, generally fairly heavy, higher in alcohol and they're multi-er, known for their multiness. Not necessarily what you want to drink in the summertime. Would you really want it in July? It's a little too heavy. I think beer was a kind of niche thing. You could only brew in the wintertime when it was cold enough to keep fermentation temperatures down low enough. We had a lot of distilleries and so on, but it really took -- it took the German immigrants to come in the 1850s before they brought a new style of brewing that caught on. One of the other sites is the Washington brewing site which is the first brewery we have an image of. What is remarkable, it's in color. It's in color because it's in a painting. This painting is from 1833. The Washington Brewery stood right next to the Navy Yard. I have a pointer here. There it is. So this is the rather enlarged White House. This is a close-up here of this painting by a man named George Cook. The Navy Yard is right over here. This is the Anacostia, and this building was called the Sugar House built around 1797 built as a sugar refinery that quickly went out of business and this English physician named Cornelius Cunningham who established the brewery on what is the site of the reflecting pool realized he needed a better location. And you had an eight-story tall brick building probably the first industrial building built in D.C, so he moved the brewery to be next to the Navy Yard so he could supply beer to the workers who were working in the sheds and docks and so on. That was 1805. And the Washington Brewery operated there all the way until 1836. So 31 years after this particular site. This site today is now a parking lot. And it is right next to -- that's the D.C. water pumping station and if you turn right around and threw a rock you would hit Nationals ball park. It's called The Yards today. This will get developed at some point. The city owns the land and they plan to put up a big development -- a big entertainment and et cetera there on the site, but they have to excavate the site because there's been historical buildings that have been identified as being there on the site of this parking lot. So that will be really cool to see once they excavate the site, a what they might uncover. We have lots of records, especially from the late 19th century but from the early 19th century we have also no records at all other than advertisements. It would be good to look under ground and see what is there for the foundations or outhouse pits, what people threw away. About brewing that we don't know about, there are no journals that survived from this period. We will see. I'm excited to see what they find here with this particular site. Along comes the 1850s and we get this huge wave of German immigrants who come not just to Washington, D.C. but they come to the northern cities around the country, and wherever the Germans settle, they build bakeries and establish banks and also establish Breweries because it goes along with local culture. And they bring with them the gift of lager beer, and that's what puts D.C. on the map beer-wise, because this is something people want to drink year round. Imagine how hot the summertime days are, and a lager is perfect, you can drink it all day long, nice, early session beer and it's something that goes really well with food and I think this changes the culture of drinking in Washington, D.C. and other cities as well. It becomes the national beverage right around the time of The Civil War because Germans have come to the country and introduced it to the other Union soldiers and it takes off from there. Before if civil war, Americans were drinking whiskey. After The Civil War we're drinking lager. It's that cut and dried. American history has changed drinking culture and largely in thanks to German immigrants. I love this advertisement from 1879. A healthy drink in the center -- although the man doesn't look healthy, the Brewer. You have the allegorical figure on the left, she's crowning beer as the national beverage and my favorite part is on the right with the family, the husband and wife and then they're feeding the baby some beer. So this was considered to be a family beverage. People could go to the beer gardens and generally saloon culture was for men only, but the beer gardens were for everyone. So you could take your wife, you could take your husband, you could take all your kids, and it was a place where families gathered to go drink beer together. And we had a lot of beer gardens around the D.C. area. Our first Brewer identified as a guy named George Beckert and he was buried in the cemetery. You see in a row, three Brewers. George, his wife Teresa. When George died in 1859, she took over the brewery and then quickly sold off the brewery but kept the restaurant. They had a brew pub, and sold it off to her two son-in-laws, one of which to the right. This is a cemetery on Capitol Hill and the brewery where they brewed was the side of the Safeway on 14th Street southeast. How many people do we have that are big beer fans? Awesome. Like most of the audience here today. So lager, kind of like an umbrella. Whiskey is an umbrella and you have Scotch and bourbon and Tennessee whiskey and so on. Lager is an umbrella as well. It can be fermented at low temperature, 39 degrees to 42 degrees, so it takes a long time to make the beer. The word in German means "to store" because you can only make it during the wintertime and then you had to put it down in the cellar or cave or basement and let it age. It had to be conditioned. This stuff would take about six months to make and hence the part about "to store." D.C. is the southernmost point in the Americas where you can actually brew lager because we have cold enough winters. Further south wasn't cold enough, and Richmond and Virginia and so on, they had another culture like drinking brandy and that stuff. But this was the southernmost point where you could brew lager. There are a number of styles. If you've been to Octoberfest, you drink a beer with a name that means March. This would be the last beer they would brew in the wintertime and lay it down in the cellar and comes September -- Octoberfest is in September, not October. They would then break over the casts, hence in September you drink a beer called March. Yeah, so historically this is why this is. The best of all the lagers is Pilsner, the original you can find at Trader Joe's around the country. It's a wonderful beer invented in 1842. We have Budweiser and Coors and so on. Those are pilsner derivatives. Other beers, the beer of lent, and that's called Bock, which is named after a billy goat and goes to medieval times when monk would brew beer for lent leapt. When they were fasting they could drink this beer. I found this advertisement and I love this because it's a stick in the eye to temperance movement. This is an advertisement from March 21st, 1873. All the brewers back then would agree on a date to release the Bock beer, the Lenten beer. You see upstanding beer-drinking men in the background and the cold water men routed by the Bock, the Billy goats. Again, kind of a stick in the eye at the temperance movement, the people not drinking. Here in Washington, D.C, the biggest brewers, especially after The Civil War were German immigrants and were established -- during the guild days they established large breweries that could brew 100,000-barrels of beer or more in a year. The single biggest Brewer in the beer, he could brew half the capacity of the entire city. He was a man who got here in D.C. in 1866, at the end of the civil war a bit of an economic downturn in the city and he bought a brewery really cheap and worked really, really hard and by the turn of the century he is the biggest Brewer around the city and he's got this gargantuan facility. This is now the site of the Kennedy Center, which was torn down -- I have images of them taking the building down. But a large facility. The Kennedy Center and the Theodore Roosevelt bridge. All the brewing sites, as well as the industrial sites were right along the river. Now we put the primo property on the river. But Georgetown, foggy bottom, Navy Yard, you had access to the waterways, you got the water for the beer offhand times how you got the product to market itself. Another hugely important brewer for the D.C. area and I would say even nationally is a man named Robert Portner, also a German immigrant and came to D.C. during The Civil War itself. The man by the way was not a brewer, he was a businessman and saw first and foremost ways to improve the brewing process to make it more economical and ways to make it more efficient. This guy came up with a number of ways to brew beer, to brew lager itself year-round. Aisle talk about that in a second. His brewery was in Old Town Alexandria, a full city block site, and now the site of the Trader Joe's on north Washington street and surrounded by three extent brewing buildings from his time. Alexandria has three existing brewing buildings and D.C. only has two. This is Portner himself with his large broad of children. He was very, very successful here. This is Christian Heurich. These guys didn't just brew beer. Although they were successful and made money, they were real estate magnate as well. They built a big apartment house and so on. They were big business men here in the local D.C. community. Portner was important, nationally, the development of beer, this man is incredibly important for the innovations he brought to the brewing industry. Like I said, imagine how hot our summers are here in D.C, right, because of the high seas and humidity. This guy figures out how you make lager year round. He realizes here is a way I can brew beer year-round. He has two crucial invention. He invents ice making machinery to keep the brew house cold. Beforehand they had to dredge the ice out of the river or ship it down in ships from Boston. And just to keep the complex cold in the summer and wintertime. The other thing he invents -- thank god for this -- air conditioning. Yeah. So this guy invents both of those. We have air conditioning, ice and lager beer. This is how you survive a Washington, D.C. summertime, as well as across the deep south. So he builds this incredible rail-based brewing empire, the largest Brewer in the deep south, and based on Alexandria, and where his brewery is was on the railroad tracks. He's strategic about where he places things because now he can ship the beer -- he didn't ship beer north of the Potomac, he sold it south. So he has 20 different depots across the deep South ,Charlotte North Carolina, Atlanta, some say he exported to Cuba. He would ship the beer in refrigerated railcars down to the depots and then they would be bottled on site and distributed around. Of course, Anheuser-Busch and Pabst, this was the 1870s and caught on and started shipping beer in D.C. as well. Back then it was by railcar and bottled locally. And this became one of the main points for bottling beer and now it's a little bit of an urban dead zone, but another crucial area was Eckington. There's a bottling plant that survives right on the railroad tracks. So brewing becomes the second largest industry in D.C. after the federal government. It is a significant industry and by and large Washingtonians drink beer. It's summertime and a big part of our culture here. Unfortunately in the background you also have this national temperance movement, which is starting to really build up steam here, especially after The Civil War, and we have actually right across the street from here, a block away from where we're standing right now is the temperance fountain built in 1882 by a California dentist named Henry Cogswell, he builds 50 nationwide and one of the handful of cities still has the temperance fountain. It's been called the ugliest statute in all of Washington, D.C. It's not very palatable, and most Washingtonians walk past without noticing it. The word "temperance" isn't a part of our vocabulary any more than like anarchy or the gold standard anymore. It's -- those are archaic terms we don't use anymore, the idea of temperance meaning abstinence from alcohol, that's not part of our alcohol. Two out of three adults drink. We're a drinking nation and always have been. But the temperance movement wanted to drive the country and the reason Cogswell put the fountain where it is, right between the house and capital, where it is now, that was a seedy district full of bars and saloons and brothels, and he meant to establish a fountain symbolically to tell people to drink water and not whiskey or beer. And how well does heavy-handed moralizing work? Not well. People continue to drink. It's always been a wet city. But ultimately the temperance movement did in fact win. It was -- Prohibition was a victory but they lost the war against alcohol because we changed the constitution back. For those people who don't live in Washington or the Washington area you may not know this, but D.C. did not have home rule until 1974. So Washington, D.C. is actually established in the constitution. The federal district, as a congressional fiefdom. So Congress ruled over the city. and on November 1st, 1917, Congress simply declared Washington, D.C. to be a dry city. This was championed by Senator Moore Shepherd of Texas who was a leading progressive in the senate at that time. And Washingtonians didn't have a choice about this. Congress declared the city to be dry and this was going to be the model dry city for the rest of the country and it turned out to be anything but. We ended up with 300 speakeasy and Congress employed its own bootleggers. Before Prohibition launched in the city in 1917 we had 267 licensed saloons. During Prohibition we had 3,000 speakeasies. The way I look at Prohibition, all Prohibition did was de-regulate the alcohol market. The demand was still there, and when the demand is still there, someone is going to supply it. It's as simple as that. I look at it like an economist, supply and demand. People still wanted to drink and there was so much money to be made and most of it -- or all of it untaxed. So very, very quickly there emerged a culture of bootlegging, including here in the national capital. I love H.L. Mencken because he was a crank and imminently critical. In my earlier book I quoted him quite a book because he was an atheist and he understood where the temperance movement was coming from, a white evangelical Protestant movement heavily morally driven and wanted to drive the company and this man being German descent and an atheist, he ended up calling Prohibition the 13 Awful Years. I love that quote. Prohibition actually here in D.C. lasted more than 16 years thanks to Congress, because it starred here more than two years before national Prohibition started. I'll show you some rather tragic photos here of what happened during Prohibition itself. I should also couch Prohibition ultimately changed the culture of drinking in Washington, D.C. because of what the bootleggers were importing during the time. Before Prohibition, Washingtonians were drinking beer. They had done so really since The Civil War and during and after Prohibition now they're drinking gin and whiskey because this is concentrated alcohol and therefore it's more profitable for the bootleggers to bring in. This is why they're doing it. So the culture of drinking shifts during Prohibition and I think this is one of the reasons why it's taken so long for us to get a beer resurgence going in the city. In the last couple years we've seen this great resurgence. So here is a very tragic photo, especially for those who like beer. A famous photo around 18,000 bottles of beer being smashed, intercepted on their way from Philadelphia down to D.C. and intercepted by the Prohibition Bureau and the judge ordered them all destroyed. This is destroyed in the Arlington Dump, which is underneath one of the Pentagon parking lots today. So underneath one of the parking lots is $18,000 of smashed beer. And what occurred one block from where we're at now, this is a photo of a raid during Prohibition, this one right here, called Hammel's lunch room and you see the beer barrels coming out of the basement. On Pennsylvania avenue one block west. This is in the federal triangle itself, the Department of Justice building. He was raided a number of times in Prohibition. This is one of the earlier ones. A typical operation during Prohibition, especially here locally in D.C. you normally would have a front to the business, in this case you would have a lunch room. If you knew someone, if you knew the password, if you're a regular, the back they would have a dark room they call it, and you go behind a curtain or secret doorway or something and you could then get a drink back there. Again, they had a legitimate business up front or oftentimes in the lower story of a building and the speakeasy on top or in the back of a room if it was a single story building. Very, very common. We had a lot of speakeasies in people's apartments. People would learn how to make a revenue opportunity out of selling hooch in their living room. They didn't have big clauses or anything like that in Washington. We had the Mayflower Club, and we have one called the Dirty Martini south of Dupont Circle and up on the fourth floor. It's the opposite of the bar. Nothing to see from a speakeasy standpoint, nothing illicit, but that was the swankiest bar. Up the street from the Mayflower Hotel. That's why they used that name even though it wasn't associated with them. National Prohibition ended on December 5th, 1933. Prohibition nationally lasted less than 14 years. Very quickly the nation tired of it and they realized you know what, there's all kinds of bootleggers out there, beyond the Great Depression, that really discredited the -- sort of the dry cause because people realized we lost a quarter million jobs and we need those jobs back and we need the tax revenue and that was part of the democratic party's ship in the re-election. The country said, yes, let's stuff the genie back in bottle because we've just rolled up the carpet for organized crime. We need to get it under control and they wanted to heavily regulate alcohol afterwards and we're still dealing with the consequences of that. Washington, D.C, though, on the other hand, did not go wet until March 1st, 1934, four months later thanks to Congress. Congress decided it needed to establish a model jurisdiction effort for how we're going to regulate alcohol and it worked pretty well. They built a system which most states still use nationwide and they employed that here nationally. And the first -- this is amazing -- in the first six months after Prohibition ended in D.C, the city, by having a new taxation regime had over one billion dollars in taxes in six months, during the Great Depression, this is remarkable. This brought back a new source of revenue for the country in a time when they desperately needed revenue for services and so on. And, you know, D.C. can really provide the national model for this. Prohibition, unfortunately, closed down all six major breweries that we had around the national capital region, four in Washington, D.C, one in Arlington and one in Alexandria, all were shut down. Unfortunately only one managed to reopen. The Christian brewery, it was the only one that successfully managed to reopen and that was bays Christian Heurich invested heavily in real estate so he had other income coming in so he could maintain the brewery property. He like many other breweries resorted to other businesses because he built this enormous ice plant, he was able to produce ice during Prohibition and that kind of made the brewery pay for itself during that time. Other breweries you saw, Pabst and Schlitz's made ice cream or malt extract or yeast. They found other ways to stay in business, but most of the breweries nationwide shut down because of Prohibition. It really did a number on the nation's drinking culture and Christian Heurich shortly after reopening he remembered how well beer sold in the D.C. area before Prohibition and then once Prohibition is over, I remember reading in this diary, he said, where are the customers? People forgot to drink beer. They moved on to gin-based cocktails because that's what the bootleggers were supplying them. We lost this beer-drinking culture we had that was a significant part of the city's culture because of Prohibition. This is a cool photo I found in the archives. This is a photo from January of 1956, which is the last month of the Christian Heurich Brewing Company operated. Heurich himself was like the Methuselah of brewing. He lived shy of his 103rd birthday. Nine decades, brewing since a teenager, incredible. His youngest daughter died a year and a half ago at age 106. Amazing the longevity they had. She herself actually did not like beer. She liked to drink other things but not beer. They think they have good genes in their family, that's why they have good longevity, but Heurich himself died in 1945. He saw World War II and World War I and Prohibition. The breweries all sputtered along and it was hard for one the drinking culture had been destroyed, and, two, it was hard as a local or even a regional Brewer now to compete against the national breweries that emerged, Anheuser-Busch and Pabst and Schlitz's was actually the biggest one and this was the age of radio and shortly later television, so they can advertise nationally. And the local guys couldn't compete. So by the 1950s, the regional breweries all shut down nationwide, including the Christian Heurich Brewing Company. This brewery shuts down in 1956. The federal government really wanted the land. It was a huge plot of land that Heurich acquired in the 1890s for the brewery and they wanted it for the Kennedy Center and for the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge. I have a two-page spread showing the brewery. He built the brewery to last for the ages. He had several other breweries that had burned down and this particular brewery he built was built of steel reinforced concrete, and nothing was going to take it down except for dynamite. In fact, that's what it took. They got a wrecking ball out and started knocking holes and it wasn't doing anything, so they pulled in the demolition experts and took three days to dynamite the facility, a huge amount of dynamite to take this down. It would have been there forever if they didn't use dynamite on this thing. And now we've got the Kennedy Center there on the same site. By the way, this was November of 1961, five years after the brewery shut down. One of the last legacies we have in D.C. is this wonderful house museum called the Christian Heurich House Museum better known to other people as the brew master's castle, south of Dupont circle and it's an amazing house to go visit. The Historical Society, the Columbia Historical Society was in the house until 2003 and the Heurich family, still here locally, a lot of Heurichs around, bought the house back and turned it into a museum and family members started donating property and stuff, all the things from the Heurich time. This house is a wonderful place to visit, so I hope you get a chance to go out. One-half block south of Dupont Circle and they do an event called History and Hops, so they bring a modern day craft brewery and Brewer to the house itself to meet the Brewer, usually brings two or three kegs of beer. You get to tour the house and you get to sip beer all around it. It's a fun experience to see the house and see this wonderful Victorian era house. I like to think of the house not only preserves our brewing history in the D.C. area, it also points the way forward for where beer is going, because you get to meet so many different brewers and breweries and taste these modern kinds of beer on a monthly basis here at the house. So, again, if you get a chance, please go to the house. It's a wonderful, wonderful place, kind of our beer museum in the D.C. area now. Fortunately we've had this tremendous resurgence of brewing, largely since 2011, when Port City opened in Alexandria. And history repeated itself. Brewing started in the D.C. area in Alexandria with Wales and everybody knows about D.C. Brau opening up in April of 2011 and Port City opened in Alexandria, so Alexandria beat D.C. in this case by two months. History repeated itself. On the left-hand side, these are the different breweries we have here now unfortunately, this city closed down. It happens once in a mile. They were a small brewery and had some issues. But there's more breweries that are coming here, which is cool to see. Here on the right, these are all the brew pubs. In fact, there is a difference between breweries and brew pubs. Brew pubs effectively are restaurants that brew their own beer for consumption there on site. You can get a Grauerfield while there, but it's zoned as a restaurant. A brewery on the other hand is an industrial site. They brew beer that is to be packaged. They put them in kegs, put them in bottles and distribute to restaurants and bars and Trader Joe's and Safeway, you know, those kind of places. So you have to have special zoning for that, drill zoning, it's much, much, much more difficult to find that kind of zoning, especially in Washington, D.C. itself. There's not much industrial zoning out there. So the guys at D.C. Brau told me they looked at 29 sites before they could find the site they did. And that's why you tend to see, if you chart the breweries on the map, they're on the outskirts of the city, on the Maryland border, because that's where they find office parks. Yeah, it's always a problem. It's also why you see so many more breweries and brew pubs opening in the suburbs because they don't have the same zone problems and real estate is cheaper out there and in many other cities you see the same things. So the suburbs oftentimes becomes the place where you see a lot of brewing action. You need a lot of capital for a brewery and real estate for it and so on. We've got this great resurgence here in brewing in Washington, D.C. So with that said, we're currently brewing about 35,000-barrels a year, which is nice. You know, producing more and more and more. Now, compared to our peak -- so before Prohibition we had a capacity of about a million barrels a year. So drink up, people, we've got a long ways to go to catch up. So a long ways to go here, which is really good to see. One of the last things I want to leave you with is this brew pub coming to Old Town Alexandria, which is the Portner Brew House. Remember the name, he invented the ice and air conditioning, this is owned by his great-great grand daughters, Catherine and Margaret Portner and they're making old style beers that their great-great grandfathers made, and often these are styles of beer forgotten about, like lagers and cream ales, one of my all-time favorites, I love it, and kind of hard to find these days. Like I say, everything old is new again. If you've nod had one of these old-style beers, it's new to you and newly reinvented, so it will be cool to see when they finally get real estate space and open up. I think they're going to open next year. They're looking for space in Alexandria. And with that, I want to thank everyone for coming out here today for this little romp through D.C. history. I would be glad to entertain any questions you guys might have and thank you all so much for coming here today. [Applause] We do have a -- yes, go ahead. Yes, sir? >> Hi, thank you for a great presentation on local history and locality is so very important. I live locally, but I can't afford to live in D.C, I live in Maryland. So I guess the laws are different there. In the retail places, I can't buy individual bottles or cans. I don't know if that's true in D.C. or not, but this may shock some people, in a great brew pub city, Salt Lake City, you probably know, they changed the laws there two years ago and that's a great place to sample beer. Surprising and ironic. But why is it that they restrict in some places to purchase six-packs? It seems like if the state is promoting extra consumption of beer, partying, rather than sampling. >> Garrett Peck: Almost all of our alcohol laws deal with the immediate aftereffects of Prohibition. So 1934, all the states now, the 21st amendment, the 21st amendment gave the states the ability to regulate alcohol. So every state then had to establish some kind of alcohol beverage control and, of course, they promised we're going to stuff the genie back in the bottle and get control of alcohol again. So they created various frameworks for the heavy regulation of alcohol. So you see all these weird laws on the books state by state by state, every state is a little different. There's an author named Niki Ganong profiled in The Washington Post and deals with every state and what the current laws are, the quirkiness, And all these things go back to 1934. I went out to Zion national park two years ago and Utah is a great craft beer state, 70% of the state is Mormons and they don't drink. You've got special bottlings for higher percent, but every beer is capped at 4%. You can have several and it's kind of cool. Other places, for example, do you live in Montgomery county? No? [ speaker is off microphone ] >> Garrett Peck: In the case of Montgomery county or Winchester or Westchester, those are the only two counties in the country that have their own regulation authority. County-wide alcohol beverage control. I mean...yeah, this all goes back to 1934 really. It's amazing to see how the laws -- how they're put in place for heavy, heavy social control back in 1934, and then how consumers have rebelled against that and chipped away at it. I have a good friend who came in the early 1960s and he said at that time in Washington, D.C, if you went out to a bar, you know, women and men could go to the bars, but women could not sit at the bar. They had to be at a table. This was about regulating the social experience, you know. If you were a man at the bar and you wanted to move to a different place, one of the porters had to carry your drink for you. You could not stand. You know how Washingtonians go to bars at happy hours, like a sport, drink in one hand, business card and resume in another. Consumers rebelled against that and forced a change. And in D.C. things change over time when consumers speak up. The change in Utah happened just a couple years ago. They had a very strict law called Zion's curtain, and Utah is a state that is heavily -- the economy is heavily influenced by tourism. Eventually people were like, this is ridiculous. The curtain was if you were at a bar you could not talk to or see the bartender. Like he's going to lead you into temptation. So you actually had to have a physical barrier blocking you from talking to the bartender called Zion's curtain. And so they liberized and still have controls in place. Eventually they caught On, this is silly at this point, given how important tourism is for the state. My home state of Virginia, a few years ago, we legalized sangria, called the Sangria law. You weren't allowed to mix spirits. We have archaic laws sometimes about control, but it's really up to you, getting wine shipped to your house. Consumers are the ones that push for that. We rebelled against the heavy regulation, even though lots of regulation is still in place, but, yeah, if you want change, speak up. It really is up to you. The government responds to you and not the other way around. That is a long answer, but -- thank you. Thanks for asking the question. >> Great presentation. Very interesting. >> Garrett Peck: Thanks so much. >> Could you go back to the slide to have brewery just before it was demolished? >> Garrett Peck: This one? >> That one. For orientation purposes, is this New Hampshire Avenue on the left or Virginia Avenue? Is this taken from the river? >> Garrett Peck: I would have to go back and look at the street plat. It was a triangle shape plat of land, very large and I think it was called Water Street at the time. That part doesn't exist anymore. >> Where would the historic preservation advocates at the time, were there none that advocated to try to save this building? Look at that architecture throughout the building? That's truly spectacular. You know, if that existed today, that would be, you know, multi-million dollars condos probably. >> Wouldn't it be awesome to live in this building? >> That location right on the river. So was anything saved from that building? Did they save any of that signage? Did they save any of the brick work? Did someone have the foresight to save a case of beer or barrel, anything like that that you know of? >> Garrett Peck: There are artifacts here and there. Almost everything was taken off the building and simply demolished. There was, on one of the -- I can't quite see here in the photo, but there was one of the Heurich symbols that they did actually take down and it's on a building in Georgetown now. They did take that down. [ speaker is off microphone ] >> Garrett Peck: Anything that large -- there was a another one here. It was one of the different -- I think it was probably one of those right there. They did take one down and it is actually in Georgetown. I learned that recently, someone had taken it down and put it on another building. That was kind of cool. But otherwise everything was torn down. This was, you know, the national historic preservation movement really got going once they knocked down Grand Central Station in New York City, at that point people were galvanized you would tear down this beautiful building and put up the monstrosity that is Madison Square Garden. You can quote me on that. It's a horrible building and I can't wait for them to tear that down again. >> Grand Central Station in New York? It's still there. >> Garrett Peck: Yeah, they almost tore that one down too. That was in the 1960s. At that point people were like, oh, my gosh, we're going if to nothing old if we tear it down. They almost tore down union Station here as well. It's part of the most fabulous train station in the country now. It's gorgeous. But, yeah, in 1956 when this closed down, the government wanted the land and there was no one to speak up for the building because it was so large and the condo movement hadn't started. Today you would immediately put condos in. In the five years before the building was torn down, there was a particular theatre company that got established in 1956 and they opened their stage in this particular building, what theatre company was it? It's still around. Arena Stage, and their first stage, they call it the old vat, because it was in the Heurich brewery. 23 you go Arena Stage -- if you go to Arena Stage, they have an underground stage called the old vat and hearkens back to the time when they were at the Heurich brewery. >> One last question, on the mansion itself or this building, is there any Seneca sandstone in any of those buildings? >> There is not. I read a book called the Smithsonian Castle and the Quarry, about the red stone site in Montgomery county where they got the rock for the castle. >> The mansion itself is not? >> Garrett Peck: The mansion -- this is actually from Humbles Town, a darker kind of chocolate color. Not red stone. Thank you. Yes, sir? >> The resurgence of brewing in D.C, I wonder if you could speak to what I see as a gap between the development of these small breweries. Neighboring Delaware, kind of came out of the breweries and Kansas has a lot coming out of that, what took this two-decade time period for D.C. to get on the train and get back into brewing after brewing was illegal so long? >> Garrett Peck: Yeah, the question still kind of boggles my mind, because all the other cities -- Jimmy Carter legalized home brewing in the '70s and they launched -- always existed these illicit home Brewers, but after that people put together business plans to open breweries, and people wanted to drink this stuff, so things started taking off, and Sam Adams is in 1984 and Jim Cook is now a billionaire. It's been successful. People want to drink good beer, not just swill water. In D.C, Christian Heurich's grandson really tried to restart the Heurich Brewing Company, he had old Heurich and made Foggy Bottom Ale, but he didn't brew it locally. They contract brewed it out of New York, upstate New York, and so never ever quite took off. He brewed here for 20 years from 1986 all the way to 2006, and then he never made a profit, and so just amazing, Washingtonians weren't ready to embrace the beer yet, which is a shame. Finally I think you had a couple breweries, after the great recession, that was a linchpin moment when people were looking for something else to drink besides get expense account wine. Suddenly getting wine by the glass at a restaurant is really expensive. When you buy that wine by the glass you pay for the whole bottle. Nine dollars, that's the price for the entire bottle. People realize that and say, beer is only $4. So beer had its moment with the great recession and you saw brewers starting to open up shop during that period of time because it was an opportunity for a lot of people, and at that point finally we had business men finally willing to give D.C. a shot and you saw -- 2011 finally started getting our breweries in the city, but fairly late, you know. Thank you for asking that question. >> Prohibition questions. >> In regards to Washington, D.C, since you're concentrating on that, was there ever anything like a free lunch? Did you actually have to buy a certain number of beers in order to eat free at these taverns that had the sign? >> The free lunch thing during -- before Prohibition was a really interesting thing. Beer has always been viewed as the working man's beverage, and the brewers themselves made several kinds of beer. They made an elegant more hoppy style beer higher in alcohol and lower beer which might be the equivalent light beer today, but before light beer existed. This was for working class men who would drink it over lunchtime. Back then you know what a grattell is, a bottle you can take to the Brewer and they fill it up. Back then it was a pale. Working class men would send their kid over to a bar and fill up the pale and take it to the site, the construction site or whatever they were working, in the factory, and dad would get to drink beer with his baloney sandwich. A lot of other places as well would offer a free lunch here in Washington, and they would offer a free lunch full of salty snacks, nuts, ham sandwiches, pretzels, anything to make you drink more beer. If you were thirsty, you would buy the beer and that basically would pay for the lunch. So many bars, after -- sorry, many states after Prohibition made that illegal to give away free food because they didn't want to see that saloon culture get revived afterwards. Did you know the group that gave us the anti -- sorry, give it away. The group that gave us Prohibition was called the Anti-saloon League. They viewed the saloons as being the point of distribution, so if we cut off all the saloons, we can cut off the supply of alcohol in the country, because the saloons is where the debauchery is happening in the country, so they figure we close down the saloons and be able to starve the beast for the rest of the country, of course, driving to drink underground, but they're fearful after Prohibition ended of seeing a revival of the saloon culture. The state where I live, I live in Virginia, you cannot have a bar. Bars are illegal. You have to have a restaurant that serves alcohol. A certain percentage of sales come from food. D.C. you can have a bar. But every state is a little different. And we're out of time. Thank you so much for coming today. And thank you for watching us online.

Election results

Candidate Party Votes[1] Percent
Richard Sprigg, Jr. Democratic-Republican 142 100%

Sprigg took his seat May 5, 1796[2]

See also

References


This page was last edited on 14 December 2018, at 22:18
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