Millvale & Etna Boroughs

October 15, 2015

Prior to Millvale taking its current name, it was referred to as Bennett PO, for Bennett Post Office, and Bennett Station, for the rail station. An Act of Assembly incorporated Millvale Borough on February 13, 1868. Part of Duquesne Borough and part of Shaler Township were taken for the creation of Millvale Borough.

This page is in four parts: Baeuerlien, Willow Grove and Others, followed by Etna

Baeulerien Brewery

C Baeuerlein Bro & Co Star Brewery 1868 – 1898
Pittsburgh Pure Beer Brewing Co 1898 – 1899
Pittsburgh Brewing Baeuerlein Brewery 1899 – 1920
U Permit during prohibition
Keystone Manufacturing & Sales Baeuerlein Brewery 1933 - 1934

Star Brewery (AKA Bennett Star Brewery)
Ownwer: C Baeuerlein
Historical records have Adam Baeuerlein of the Strip District in Pittsburgh building this brewery and giving it its name. Adam was the owner of the Fifth Ward Lager Beer Brewery and father to Christian Baeuerlein. Christian took over the brewery but I cannot find a clear time when this occurred.

Evergreen Plank Road at Butler Plan Road in Shaler Township
Butler Plank Road became Ohio Blvd. and State Route 28
General area was known as Bennett Post Office and Bennett Station
The brewery had a plant on each side of Evergreen in which the brew house was on the Shaler side and the Millvale side had the bottling equipment, repair shop and ice machines. Thhis is shown on the Sanborn Fire Insurance maps but not on Hopkins. Hopkins 1906 Atlas, Plate 19 shows this brewery. American Brewers Review, Volume 14 (1901) reported that Baeuerlein built a five-story storage house and other structures.

The brewery had the following transformations according to various sources:
C. Baeuerlein Bro. & Co., Star Brewery 1868-1888
As shown on 1872 Atlas, Plate 118
The 1886 Atlas, Plate 8 C. Baeuerlein, Star Brewery
Baeuerlein Brewing Co. 1888-1898
The 1897 Atlas, Plate 19 shows the Baeuerlein Brewing Co.
Pittsburgh Pure Beer Brewing Co. 1898-1899
Records in the Pa. Department of State (published in 1903) show Pittsburgh Pure was in business in 1897, 1898 and 1899.
Pittsburgh Brewing Co., Baeuerlein Brewery 1899-1920
The 1906 Hokins Atlas, Plate 19 shows Pittsburgh Brewing Co., Baeuerlein Brewery.
The 1918 Brewer’s Handbook identified the location at Millvale Station

Pittsburgh Post, Monday November 25, 1889 posted this notice: Physicians prescribe C. Baeuerlein Brewing Company’s bottled lager to their convalescent patients in preference to any other.

Pittsburgh Post, Saturday December 28, 1889, Page 3 mentions the beer:
The C. Baeuerlein Brewing Co.'s Bottled Beer is especially recommended for luncheons or Holiday Dinners. Quarts or pints. Telephone 1018. L

Ice House Accident
A distant family member asked a question on a public forum if anyone had knowledge if an icehouse accident. The accident took place on January13, 1881 and may have involved F. George Eichler

A. H. Berenberge Sale
The Brewers Journal, Volume 58 (1922) reported the sale of Pittsburgh Brewing’s Baeuerlein Brewery to the A H Berenberge Company for $63,000. It was then sold to Keystone Manufacturing & Sales.

Brewery operations shut down by national prohibition in 1920-1933
The brewery was issued U-Permit No. PA-U-399: which allowed the resumption of brewing in 1933. Keystone Manufacturing & Sales Co., aka: Baeuerlein Brewery 1933-1934. Closed in 1934

Keystone Manufacturing produced 12 ounce bottles of “High Test” beer with the label address showing Pittsburgh Millvale PO, Pa. Keystone was permitted to brew at the time as they had permit Pa-U-399 from the Federal Government.

Keystone Manufacturing
Keystone Manufacturing & Sales Co. incorporated on July 24, 1947 as a foreign company of the Branch of Delaware. Address Ohio Street Evergreen Rd, Millvale

The Pittsburgh Press, “
Two Breweries Are Unable to Operate.” October 21, 1934 reported that Charles B Shapiro, president of Keystone Manufacturing & Sales Co. of Millvale filed an admission of insolvency following a meeting of the board of directors. The company sought to reorganize on August 30, but abandoned the plans on October 3.

Allegheny Bottling Works
Property owner was Christian Bauerlein as shown on Hopkins 1906 Atlas Plate 20, Northern Vicinity. The lot was on Friday Street in Shaler.

Bauerlein Street
Hopkins Plate 20 also shows Bauerlein Street in Millvalem between Mary Street and North Avenue.

Brewery Fire
The five-story brewing building burned on April 28 (Tuesday), 1965, hours after the Commonwealth took title of the property. The seven-story vat room burned on Thursday the 29th. The story was reported in the North Hills Record on May 5, 1965. The buildings were to be razed for the construction of the Route 28 by-pass. The cause of each fire was undetermined.

Willow Grove Brewery

1868 Gast Brewery
The Gast Brewery was established in 1868. The Michael Enz Brewery followed the Gerst Brewery.

Charles J Andrews, Secretary of the Western Pennsylvania Brewers Association notes the American Brewing Company in
Pittsburgh the Powerful. Gerst established the brewery in 1868. I can accept the date but all of my findings point to Gerst being in error. Gerst and Gast were brewers and both had property in Allegheny, especially in the Seventh Ward on Troy Hill. But the Gerst family had a brewery on Spring Garden as well as along East Lane. Gast was the brewer in Millvale at Willow Grove

Hopkins 1872 had Jno Gast Willow Grove Brewery
Note: John Gerst d. February 3, 1932 and was buried in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Allegheny County.

1872 Gast Brewery
Gast Brewery (John)
Owner: John Gast
The Gast Brewery is shown on Hopkins 1872 Atlas, Plate 118. The brewery was at Butler Plank Road and Evergreen Plank Road. The 1886 Atlas, Plate 8 does not show a brewery.

Thurston’s 1868 directory shows John Gast having a brewery on Troy Hill, Reserve Township (at No. 23). He was also a director in the Coal Men’s Trust Company on Smithfield Street in Pittsburgh. Thurston’s 1870 directory had Gast, Sons & Co. brewery in Millvale. John and Valintine were brewers, which leaves me to believe that they were the sons. Hopkins 1872 Atlas for the Seventh Ward shows both Philip Gerst and John Gast having property in Troy Hill.

1880 August Schneider
August Schneider was a brewer in Germany and Switzerland. He came to America on May 1, 1880, arriving in Philadelphia. Eventually he came to Millvale and was brewmaster for the Enz Brewing Company. He then founded the American Brewing Company. But after four years he went to Latrobe along with his partner Philipp Herman and founded the Loyalhanna Brewery.

1893 Willow Grove Brewery
Michael Enz Brewing Company was the owner of Willow Grove in 1893 as he had an advert in a publication at the time.

Per American Brewers Review, Volume 10, Issue 1, 1897:
M. Enz Brewing Company, Allegheny, Pa. placed an order with the Goetz & Brada Manufacturing Company of Chicago for:
One complete brewhouse outfit, viz., 200-barrel steam brew kettle, mash tub 14 X 7 ft. including all copper connections, hop jack 12 X 10 X 7 ft. with copper false bottom, metal hopper 9 X 6 ft., beer tank 11 X 7 ft., also all galvanized iron vent pipes and copper pipe connections.

Enz & Schaefer
The Enz Brewery followed the Gerst Brewery but I do not know if Schaefer was partners with Enz at the start or came later.

Bottles have been produced showing Enz & Schaefer Willow Grove Brewery, Allegheny Pa.

Emil Gaertner was assistant brewmaster for Enz & Schafer (after 1896) at Allegheny, Pa. After 4 years he became brewmaster and remained for 4 years. He moved on to become brewmaster at Lauer Brewery in Pittsburgh but after one year he went to the Connellsville Brewery for three years.

The J H Beers & Company published
Historical and Biographical Annals of Columbia and Montour Counties, Pennsylvania, Containing a Concise History of the Two Counties and a Genealogical and Biographical Record of Representative Families in 1915. They noted Gaertner being with Enz & Schafer for 4 years. That would place Gaertner with then at least until 1900. Gaertner could have stayed on with American before leaving for Lauer. Lauer was bought by Pittsburgh Brewing in 1899 and closed. This would explain why Gaertner stayed for only one year.

American Brewing Company
Founded by August Schneider and shown on the 1906 Hopkins Atlas, Plate 19.

The Purchase
The American Brewing Company purchased the Willow Grove Brewery in 1898. Walter Hensel and John Shaffer were with American.

Comes into the Independent Brewing Fold
American Brewery – Independent Brewing Co
The Independent Brewing Company bought the brewery from American in 1905.

1918 Map Location
The brewery was noted to be at East Ohio Street at Millvale Station, according to The Brewer’s Handbook of 1918. Hopkins 1906 Atlas, Plate 19 Sub Plan shows this brewery along Butler Plank Road, which is now a part of Route 28. The property abuts Allegheny City.

1920 Brewery Closure
The brewery was not in operations during the beginning of prohibition in 1920.

Sale to Reinman Packing Co
American Brewing was sold to the Fried & Reinman Packing Co. in 1921, according to Bill Stout and Jean Domico in their book, Millvale, Arcadia Publishing, 2014. The brewery was in Millvale but was on the border with Reserve Township. A. Reinman was the landowner in Reserve.

Other Breweries

Draai Laag Brewing Company (Brewpub)
(Pronounced Dry Log)
Owner: Draai Laag Brewing LLC
501 East Ohio St
Established in 2011. A license search shows that Draai Laag has a brewery-pub license giving them the right to operate as a combined restaurant and brewery. As they have acquired a brewing site in Allison Park they are phasing out the brewing operations here. As of August 7, 15 this location still has a brewery-pub license as well as a brewing license.

Grist House Brewing (Brewpub)
Owner: Mientkiewiczeaton LLC (Kyle L Mientkiewicz & Brian S Eaton)
10 Sherman Street 15209, Millvale
Phone: 814 528 2303 Web:
Corporate name is Mientkiewiczeaton LLC
Brian S. Eaton & Kyle L. Mientkiewicz
Opening day to the public was May 24, 2014. The brewery made its first delivery to the Independent Brewing Co in Shady Side and Pipers Pub on the South Side on May 24, 2014.

Hoehl Brewing Co., Henry Jr. – Millvale Brewery
Stanton Avenue in the First Ward at the boundary with the Second Ward
As shown on 1872 Atlas, Plate 118.
The 1886 Atlas, Plate 8 shows Hoehl property but no brewery is shown.
The 1897 Atlas, Plate 19 shows the brewery as if it were re-built.
It is also shown on the 1906 Atlas, Plate 19.
Beer bottles are marked Bennett, Pa., which could reflect Bennett PO or Bennett Station. The brewery was near Bennett Post Office. Local historians indicate that the brewery was in operations between the 1890’s and early 1900’s.

The 1893 Sanborn Fire Insurance map identified the brewery as the Millvale Brewery. The 1906 map (page 219) shows the brewery as owned by Independent Brewing to be closed and partially dismantled.

Pittsburgh Press, in an article published on April 6, 1914 about the liquor license court noted that Henry Hoehl Jr. was a wholesaler at 2041 Center Avenue in Pittsburgh. American Brewers' Review, Volume 19, 1905 reported the brewery closed by the Independent Brewing Company.

Brewery in Enta Borough

Etna Borough was created from part of Shaler Township on September 16, 1868 by court order.

Metzger Brewery
Owner: Michael Metzger
Walnut Street between Prospect and Locust
The 1872 Atlas, Plate 118 shows the M. Metzger Brewery. It is on an un-named street. The first name is not clear and difficult to read. The street would be Walnut Street on current maps.
The 1906 Atlas, Plate 21 does not show a brewery but property to Metzger heirs.
Tavern Trove (.com) has the brewery in operation from 1866 to 1893. I believe the 1866 date should read 1869, as that is when the family moved to Etna from the West End.

Michael Metzer brewed ale for private purchase and drinking by individual families. The Brook Law came into affect and outlawed that endeavor.