Boozy Ballarat

Ballarat’s breweries and temperance movement.

Breweries and other alcohol distilleries were established on Ballarat’s goldfields to meet diggers’ drinking needs. Alcohol was a particularly popular beverage as available water was polluted. Diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera and typhoid were a serious threat to anyone drinking local creek water. [1]

Warrenheip Brewery

The Warrenheip Brewery was established in 1887 by William Kenna. He had extensive brewing experience prior, having worked for 20 years at the Phoenix Brewery in Warrenheip and for Magill and Coghlan. Kenna’s beer gained acceptance in the local community through the usage of a large fresh water spring.

The company was sold to the Breheny brothers in 1912. Brewing ceased in 1914, and the company moved into distilling grain, as well as whiskey and gin. [2]

Warrenheip Brewery stencil (Gold Museum collection, 78.2100)

Warrenheip Brewery stencil (Gold Museum collection, 78.2100)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ballarat Bitter beer bottle (Ballarat Historical Society collection, 78.2448)

Ballarat Bitter bottle (Ballarat Historical Society, 78.2448)

 

Ballarat Brewing Company

Located at Lydiard St South Ballarat, Ballarat Brewing Company was established in 1895 by James Coglan of Phoenix Brewing and William Tulloch of Royal Standard Brewery.

The famous 1927 ‘Ballarat Bertie’ mascot was first depicted on the labels of the company’s bottles.

Ballarat Brewing Company was sold to Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) in 1958. CUB ceased operations in Ballarat in 1989 and the site was sold to the Ballarat School of Mines. [3]

Buninyong Brewery

Buninyong Brewery (Ballarat Historical Society collection, 171.79)

Buninyong Brewery (Ballarat Historical Society, 171.79)

Eureka Brewing Company bottle (Ballarat Historical Society, 78.0867)

Eureka Brewing Company bottle (Ballarat Historical Society, 78.0867)

Located at 107 Yuille Street, Buninyong Brewery was built by Thomas Shepard during the 1850s. It was known as ‘Shepard’s Brewery’ and produced crystal malt ale. [4]

Eureka Brewing Company

The Eureka Brewing Company was a soft drink manufacturer in Ballarat formed in 1897. The company produced soft drinks, cordial and bux ale, a non-alcoholic beverage brewed from malt and hops. The factory closed in 1926. [5]

Ballarat’s Temperance Movement

Many Ballarat locals and authorities were anxious about public drunkenness and excessive alcohol consumption on the goldfields.

From the 1850s onwards, concerned citizens established temperance societies to promote alcohol abstinence and the reduction of liquor licences.

The Ballarat Total Abstinence Society (BTAS) was one of the largest and longest-serving temperance organisations. Established in the 1850s, the BTAS campaigned against the increasing number of liquor establishments in Ballarat. They also extolled the virtues of living an alcohol-free life. [6]

From the mid-twentieth century, the Society began to focus on drug and alcohol prevention as general attitudes about alcohol relaxed. The BTAS continued up until the early 2000s.

SOURCES

[1] ‘Alcohol on the Goldfields’, Sovereign Hill Education Blog, last modified 21 February 2014, https://sovereignhilledblog.com/2014/02/21/alcohol-on-the-goldfields/

[2] ‘Warrenheip Brewery’, Ballarat Industrial Heritage Wiki, last modified 11 October 2013, https://bih.federation.edu.au/index.php/Warrenheip_Brewery

[3] ‘Ballarat Brewing Company’, Ballarat Industrial Heritage Wiki, last modified 5 March 2013, https://bih.federation.edu.au/index.php/Ballarat_Brewing_Company

[4] ‘Buninyong Brewery’, Ballarat Industrial Heritage Wiki, last modified 21 September 2012, https://bih.federation.edu.au/index.php/Buninyong_Brewery

[5] ‘Eureka Brewing Company’, Ballarat Industrial Heritage Wiki, last modified 25 May 2012, https://bih.federation.edu.au/index.php/Eureka_Brewing_Co.

[6] ‘Ballarat Total Abstinence Society’, The Star, November 21, 1860; ‘Ballarat Total Abstinence Society’, The Ballarat Star, October 19, 1904

 

 

 

 

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