Joseph Eppig Brewery, Brooklyn, N.Y.

The Joseph Eppig Brewery started business in 1888 and continued until 1914. The brewery was one of many businesses featured in an article on “Industry and Commerce” published in the May 23, 1908 edition of the Staunton (Va.) Daily Leader. Much of the information and several of the quotes that follow were gleaned from that feature.

The brewery’s founder, Joseph Eppig was born in Germany on June 21, 1844 and came to the United States in 1857.

After working for a number of years on the farm of an uncle who had located near Baltimore, he decided to enter the employ of an elder brother, Leonard Eppig, who had founded a brewery in Brooklyn. Joseph Eppig showed unusual aptitude for the business and speedily was made brewmaster, which important post he held for seventeen years.

Early in the year 1888 Mr. Eppig, who for a long period had cherished hopes of going into business for himself, realized his ambition, and in partnership with Frank Ibert established the Joseph Eppig Brewery…

The 19th of March is a red letter day in the history of the brewery for it was on that date in 1888 that the first delivery of beer was made from that plant

Eppig & Ibert was listed in the 1889 Brooklyn City Directory with an address of Central Avenue, corner of Grove Street but the partnership was short-lived.

In less than twelve months Mr. Eppig bought out his partner, and thereafter was the sole owner.

Ibert would go on to open his own brewery nearby on the corner of Evergreen Avenue and Linden Street.

The Joseph Eppig Brewery office of 176 Grove Street was listed in the Brooklyn directories and later, phone books, up through 1914. The brewery itself ran the entire length of Central Avenue in the block between Grove Street and Linden Street.

Early in the company’s history, they were one of a handful of New York City brewers who supported brewery worker’s demands for shorter hours and ultimately they became one of the first brewers to recognize union labor. Their agreement with the brewers’ union was printed in the April 18, 1892 edition of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. (It certainly highlighted the need for unions at that time!)


The brewers’ union has made an agreement for a year, to take effect today, restricting the employees to union men, making ten hours a day’s work, six days in the week, with two hours on Sunday, with wages at $16 and $18 a week. The Brooklyn breweries affected are those of Frank Ibert, Joseph Eppig, George Grauer, and the Fort Hamilton Company.

The brewery brewed two brands of beer that were only sold locally.

Two brands of beer are there brewed – the “Standard,” a light beer, and the “Wuerzburger,” a dark brew. They are sold on draught and also bottled by the brewery for family and hotel trade. Nothing but lager beer is brewed.

The business of the Joseph Eppig Brewery is confined to local trade and nearby points in Long Island, delivery being had in various distributing centers Hollis, Jamaica, etc.

The business never incorporated. A family operation it was run by Joseph Eppig until his death in September, 1907 after which his family continued the business.

Since the death of its founder the Joseph Eppig Brewery has been conducted by Katherine Eppig, his widow, as executrix of the Joseph Eppig estate. She is assisted by her sons, Theodore C. and C. John, the former being business manager and the latter supervising the practical end of the plant.

In 1914 the Eppig estate sold the brewery. An item announcing the sale appeared in the August 9,1914 edition of the Brooklyn Citizen.

Among the latest Brooklyn transactions are the following: the J. Chr. G. Hupfel Brewing Company, of No. 229 East Thirty-eighth Street, Manhattan, purchased from the estate of Joseph Eppig the plant of the Joseph Eppig Brewing Company in Brooklyn. The property consists of two large brick and one frame structures, occupying an area about 200′ x 500′ in Central Avenue, Grove and Linden Streets.

The bottle I found is champagne style and approximately 12 oz. The embossing includes a trademark that appears to be an eagle with a beer keg dangling from its mouth by means of a short length of rope. Machine made it was likely made in the last 10 years of the business.

On a final note – Joseph’s brother Leonard, also a long-time Brooklyn brewer, was listed in the Brooklyn directories dating back to the early 1860’s. His April 10, 1893 obituary in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle stated:

In 1867 he was instrumental in organizing the firm of Fischer and Eppig, establishing a small brewery on the corner of Central Avenue and George Street…In 1879 he purchased Mr. Fischer’s interest in the firm.

This was certainly the brewery where Joseph served as brewmaster for seventeen years (roughly 1870 to 1887) prior to leaving in 1888 to start the Joseph Eppig Brewery.

Listed at 24 George Street and later at 193 Meserole Street in Brooklyn, I’ve seen it referred to as Leonard Eppig’s Germania Brewery and the Leonard Eppig Brewing Company.

The Eppig name was recently revived by a craft brewery located in San Diego California called J & L Eppig Brewing. According to their web site ( it’s run by members of the Eppig family. Their slogan is:

Eppig Brewing – Established 1866 – Reinvented 2016


Albert Krumenaker, 512 & 514 West 166th St., N.Y.


krumenaker      krumenaker-1      krumenaker-2


Albert Krumenaker was in business as a bottler from 1892 to the mid-1920’s.

The business was first listed in the 1892 NYC Directory as a bottler at 167th Street near Amsterdam Avenue. Sometime around 1894 he moved to W 166th Street. According to a March 18, 1902 article in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle:

Nine years ago (1893) Krumenaker built a house at 512 West One Hundred and Sixty-sixth Street…Two years later (1895), the Deputy Water Commissioner said, he built a house next door…

On a side note, the article went on to say that Krumenaker had installed an unmetered service in 514 and had under reported his water usage for several years.

The business incorporated in December 1899. The New York Times listed them under “New Corporations” in their December 21, 1899 edition.

Albert Krumenaker, Incorporated, of New York City, to bottle beer; capital $500. Directors – Albert Krumenaker, Julius Bach and Daniel Guggenheim, New York City.

The business served as a bottler for George Ehret’s Hell Gate Brewery. This is confirmed by an undated but old photograph of a Gramm Logan truck with a sign on the side that read” George Ehret’s, New York, lager beer, bottled by Albert Krumenaker, 508-514 W 166th St, Telephone 69 Audobon. The truck certainly looks like it’s from the early 1900’s.

krumenaker-car   krumenaker-sign

At some point he also became the wholesale dealer for Blatz Beer and in 1912 he ran a series of advertisements for Blatz in the “Evening World.”

According to a March 19, 1933 article in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, the Krumenaker operation was absorbed by Liebmann’s prior to the start of National Prohibition.

Before Prohibition put a snag in the beer business Liebmann’s has absorbed many famous brands of beer and breweries. They were Peter Doelger’s, Welz & Zerweck’s, George Ehret’s, Obermeyer & Liebmann’s plaza brew, Beadelston & Woerz and the Krumenaker bottling works – and some 30 other brands. With the possible exception of Peter Doelger’s, all of them will remain absorbed, and they will reappear – are now being bottled as Liebmann’s

The business continued to be listed with the name of Krumenaker through 1925. In later years, the business included 508 to 516 West 166th Street in their address.  After 1925, as far as I can tell, the Krumenaker name vanished from the Directories.

Krumenaker passed away in August of 1927. His death notice is printed in the August 8, 1927 issue of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

Today, the houses Krumenaker built at 512 and 514 West 166th Street no longer exist. 508 West 166th Street is an old apartment building that according to was built in 1910 so it appears to have been utilized by the business in its later years (this dates the above photograph to no earlier than 1910).

I’v found two Krumenaker bottles. One is a champagne style tooled blob (12 oz) certainly from his earlier history. It has the 512 and 514 West 166th Street address embossed on it near the base so it most likely dates no earlier than 1895 when he built 514 and no later than 1910 when he added 508. The other is a machine made export style probably from the decade before the start of National Prohibition.