Over-the-Rhine: When Beer Was King

Over-the-Rhine: When Beer Was King

by Michael Morgan
     
 

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Though Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine (OTR) neighborhood has famously fallen into disrepair, it was once the hub of Cincinnati’s famed brewing history. This title will focus on the rise and fall of brewing in OTR while sharing the story of the German immigrants whose fortunes ebbed and flowed with the brewing culture. Cincinnatians warmly embrace their… See more details below

Overview

Though Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine (OTR) neighborhood has famously fallen into disrepair, it was once the hub of Cincinnati’s famed brewing history. This title will focus on the rise and fall of brewing in OTR while sharing the story of the German immigrants whose fortunes ebbed and flowed with the brewing culture. Cincinnatians warmly embrace their brewing history and celebrate with various festivals throughout the year, as they reflect on a time when OTR was home to dozens of breweries that fed hundreds of ancillary businesses, including public houses. Vine Street alone was home to over 130 saloons. Not coincidentally, Cincinnati consumed more beer per capita than any other city in the country, but as the temperance movement became more powerful, “Blue Laws” began forcing the closure of saloons on Sundays – commonly the only day of recreation for most of the neighborhood’s industrious population. This struck simultaneous blows at both a social culture as well as an economy that was dependent upon breweries, saloons and entertainment. Anti-German hysteria overtook the city when the U.S. entered WWI, resulting in efforts to strip German identity from OTR, and the 1919 Volstead Act enacted Prohibition and criminalized OTR’s culture and much of its economy. New construction essentially stopped prior to WWI, meaning that almost everything in the neighborhood’s roughly 350 acres was built between 1830 and 1910. Most intriguingly, almost all the breweries had sub-basements and tunnels that ran 30-40 feet under the streets (below water and sewer lines). Some of these tunnels were reported to have been used during Prohibition to serve as speakeasies. These passages are still being discovered and are partially responsible for the current fascination with OTR’s brewing history.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781596299146
Publisher:
History Press, The
Publication date:
10/05/2010
Series:
Food and Drink Series
Pages:
184
Sales rank:
887,366
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

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