In my Inbox this morning, i received my daily “This Day in History” message from the History Channel. While normally these messages concern themselves with political and military milestones, today’s was about something much more dark and sinister…canned beer.
It seems that on this date in 1935, the Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company delivered the first cans of beer to the consumer market, marking a seismic shift in the future of the beer industry. Storing beer in cans was easier and cheaper in almost every aspect of the beer industry. Soon, the entire country was drinking from a can.
Now, I am aware that I have a tendency to voice some controversial opinions on this blog a bit too often for the likings of the editors at the American Public House Review. However, despite those occupational hazards, I am here to declare that this is the anniversary of a very dark day in history. A very dark day indeed.
Beer is an ancient wonder of human ingenuity. It is a constant that has stood the test of time and has evolved over the centuries to meet the tastes of an ever changing human palate. It is our job as stewards of this legendary necessity to work towards its perfection. To craft it in a way that either tells our story to future generations or simply improves the enjoyment of our fellow man.
However, in the winter of 1935, someone, and I will not name names, decided to cheapen this noble art rather than better it. Yes, I understand there is something to be said about making beer more affordable in times of need. But there are just some things in life where quality is more of an imperative than quantity. So tonight, let us lift a glass bottle together in an oath to do our part to never again allow ourselves to dishonor this most solemn art again.
By Dave McBride