Founded in 1852 by Gabriel Hail and John Albrecht, the Potosi Brewery began as a small brewery quenching the thirsts of area farmers, fishermen and miners.Â In 1886 Adam Schumacher bought the brewery and started brewing beer.Â Â In 1906, the Potosi Brewing Company was founded by Adam and his brothers Nicholas and Henry.Â Â At its peak, the Potosi Brewery had grown to be the fifth largest in Wisconsin, shipping a variety of labels including Good Old Potosi, Holiday, Garten Brau, Augsburger and others to destinations throughout the United States. In 1972 the brewery ceased operations and closed its doors. The restoration of the Potosi Brewery began in 1995 when Gary David bought the ruined Potosi Brewery Bottling buildings.Â This nearly one square block of buildings had just suffered a major fire and most of the buildings were a total loss.Â After working three years to rebuild parts of what had been destroyed, Gary then turned his attention to the Brewery itself.Â Being awarded the high bid at the county auction he then enlisted the help of his friend Rick Tobin and cousin Denis David.Â It was the marketing genius of Denis and his wife Madonna in 1999 that brought the public on board through a community meeting.Â This meeting was overwhelmingly attended by the public and brought forth numerous suggestions as well as additional support.Â It was this gathering of the public that led to the formation of the Potosi Brewery Foundation in February of 2000.Â In 2004, with restoration underway, the Potosi Foundation was selected by the American Breweriana Association to be the home to its national museum. According to Len Chylack, president of the American Breweriana Association, Potosi was selected over cities such as Milwaukee and St. Louis because of their passion for beer, brewery history and beer-making culture. The National Brewery Museum is a world-class facility dedicated to preserving the artifacts and memories of America's breweries.
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