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Frankford Oktoberfest

Since its time for Oktoberfest and beer, it is appropriate that the program last night at the Historical Society of Frankford was “Breweries of Frankford, Kensington and Bridesburg”.   Rich Wagner, Pennsylvania brewery historian, held the audience of 50 or so in rapt attention as his made he presentation.

I have no great interest in breweries but they played an important part in the history of the city and also Frankford.  So we found out that the Frankford breweries (John Fritsch and John Grauch) were down in the 4200 block of Penn Street.  The house at 4234 Penn Street was listed as the office for one of them.

Rich Wagner clearly has done his homework.  The presentation was illustrated with many then and now photographs showing the history of the breweries and then what those buildings look like today.  Many of them are still around serving other purposes.  It was interesting to me that the old Edgemont hotel at Ash and Edgemont Street in Bridesburg was in fact a brewery.  I grew up over there and never would have known.

Interesting member of the audience was Guy Hairston of the 4800 block of Hawthorne Street.  He was working in his yard a few weeks ago and uncovered an antique beer bottle dating from around 1890 made by Conrad Bock of 2108 Bridge Street. Rich Wagner offered his help in evaluating Guy’s find.

The evening was capped off by a beer tasting courtesy of Mike Scotese (Scoats) of the Grey Lodge.  The event was sponsored by 3rd Federal Bank.

Pictures below of the festive crowd.  Click on the image for a large sized view.

Next month, the HSF will feature Veterans Guard 3rd Regiment Infantry in uniform.  With luck we will get some interesting video.

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Coming Up in Frankford

  • Grand Army of the Republic Museum Open House
    When – Sun, October 3, 12pm – 5pm
    Where – 4278 Griscom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19124 (map)
    Description – Presentation at 1:30 PM: “Civil War Spies and Guerillas” Dr Sid Copel
  • Friends of Overington Park
    When – Tue, October 5, 7pm – 8pm
    Where – CORA Neuman Center at 1000 Orthodox Street (map)
    Description – Come out and discuss our park and what we an do to make it a safe and pleasant place for everyone.
  • Frankford Civic Association Meeting
    When – Thu, October 7, 7pm – 8pm
    Where – 2nd floor conference room, Aria Health, 4900 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19124 (map)
  • Pasta Dinner
    When – Sun, October 10, 12pm – 4pm
    Where – St. Joachim Roman Catholic Church 1527 Church Street Philadelphia, PA 19124 (map)
    Description – St. Joachim’s is having a Pasta Dinner on Sunday, October 10 from 12PM to 4PM. Dinners include: Pasta, meatballs or sausage, salad, rolls & butter, desserts and coffee, tea or iced tea. All this for $10 for adults, $6 for children 6-12 and free for children 5 and under. Take out is also available!
  • Historical Society of Frankford program
    When – Tue, October 12, 7:30pm – 9:00pm
    Where – 1507 Orthodox St., Philadelphia, PA 19124 (map)
    Description – BREWERIES of FRANKFORD, KENSINGTON & BRIDESBURG Rich Wagner Master Brewers Association of the Americas PHILADELPHIA BREWING COMPANY OKTOBERFEST LIBATIONS Raise one up for these three industrial River Wards, where breweries quenched the thirst of thousands of workers and shipped beer throughout the world. Schmidt’s and Gretz were two of the last breweries to close, while those of John Fritsch and John Grauch in Frankford never made it past prohibition. Rich Wagner has been studying the history of this area’s brewing industry and has researched brewing from colonial times to today’s craft brewing industry.
  • Frankford Community Garden Maintenance Meetup
    When – Thu, October 14, 6pm – 8pm
    Where – Corner of Oxford Ave. and Foulkrod St. (map)
    Description – Gather together with your friends and neighbors to maintain and improve this garden spot in Frankford.
  • Northeast Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
    When – Sun, October 17, 1pm – 2pm
    Where – Holy Family University – 9801 Frankford Avenue (map)
    Description – NORTHEAST HALL of FAME Holy Family University – 9801 Frankford Avenue Inductees: Benjamin Rush, Robert Purvis, Butch Ballard, Sister Mary Scullion, Special People in the NE (SPIN) Tickets $25.00 available from Holy Family University.
  • Northwood Civic Association Meeting
    When – Tue, October 19, 7pm – 8pm
    Where – St. James Lutheran Church, at Castor Avenue and Pratt Street. (map)