Hartig Brewery

Monday, December 27, 2010 8:11 PM

I'm addressing this to Mr. Mike Reilly, as he wrote the history of the Hartig Brewery.   Mr. Reilly, you commented that the 1947 directory listed a Harold McEvoy as the president, and that no further information about Harold McEvoy was available.  I actually came to the Hartig Brewery while researching Harold McEvoy - he was my great-uncle and my father's god-father.  I don't have a lot of information about his time at the Hartig Brewery, but did come across some news stories. (Uncle Harold tends to be one of those family members who is easily tracked in the newspaper.)  I just finished transcribing the articles (4 in all), so include them here with references. The text of the articles is in bold.

From the Waukesha Daily Freeman, Waukesha, Wisconsin, 1 Nov 1946, Page 3:
Watertown Beer is Ordered Destroyed
Madison,-(UP)- The U.S. District Attorney's office announced today that 1,703 cases of beer were destroyed at the Hartig co. in Watertown yesterday on order of the federal district court in Madison.
The beer was condemned in court proceedings Tuesday after Harold F. McEvoy, president of the Hartig co., had declined to contest charges of food and drug law administrators that the beer was adulterated by a type of acid resulting from the use of molasses in brewing.
The government's charges specified that the adulteration was not harmful.
The following story appeared in the Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune on April 23, 1947:

Brewery Fined For Going Over Quota

Madison - (AP) -  Federal Judge Patrick Stone levied fines totaling $8,000 yesterday against the Hartig company, Watertown brewery, and its president, Harold McEvoy, on charges of making beer in excess of the company's quota.
Judge Stone fined McEvoy $3,000 on each of two counts and fined the brewery $2,000.  McEvoy and the counsel for the company entered please of no contest.

Printed in Waukesha Daily Freeman (Waukesha, Wisconsin), 20 Jan 1948, Page 1.  Seems to be a follow-up from the story in the Freeman 1 Nov 1946 in which 1,703 cases of adulterated beer were destroyed.  Judge Patrick Stone is the same one who fined Harold McEvoy $6,000 22 Apr 1947 for exceeding production quotas at the brewery, according to the Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune:

Watertown Brewer Fined for 'Short Cut'

MADISON, Wis., (UP) - Harold F. McEvoy, former owner and manager of the Hartley brewery, Watertown, was fined $50 in Madison Federal court today for shipping adulterated beer in interstate commerce. 
McEvoy pleaded no contest to the charge.  Federal district attorney Charles Cashin said the beer was adulterated by use of an acid which, he said, was used by some brewers as a "short cut" to avoid the expense of pasteurization.
The brewery is now in bankruptcy, largely because of the government's seizure and destruction of beer shipments, McEvoy said.  In fining McEvoy, federal judge Patrick T. Stone said he took into account the fact that McEvoy had spent $48,000 trying to correct "deplorable" conditions in the Hartley brewery after purchasing it in 945 and had paid a previous $6,000 fine for using excess grain in making beer.

From the Waukesha Daily Freeman, Waukesha, Wisconsin, 10 Feb 1948, Page 1:

Former Brewer at Watertown Is Fined

CHICAGO, (UP)-A former brewer was fined $2,500 in federal court today after he pleaded guilty to the charge of concealing 102,180 pounds of grain spirits which he had marked as "molasses."
Harold McEvoy, Watertown, Wis., resident and St. Paul, Minn., businessman, was given 90 days by Federal Judge Michael Igor to pay the fine.  McEvoy was charged with concealing the grain in 1946 after it had been sold to his King Cole Brewing co., here.  The grain spirits were subject to the then effective war food orders.  Similar charges were dropped against J.P. Walsh, Dan Schulte, and the Hartig co., of Watertown.

I'm not sure if or how this is related to the overproduction and adulteration, or if it even involves the Hartig brewery at all.  This may not add much to the description of events, but does flesh out some of the problems between 1945 and 1947 a little.


Chris McEvoy

Honolulu, HI