Schlitz dates back to 1849, when German immigrant, August Krug, began brewing beer in his Milwaukee restaurant’s basement.
Twenty-year-old Joseph Schlitz immigrates to Milwaukee from Germany and is hired by Krug to handle his restaurant and brewery’s bookkeeping.
The brewery produces 300 barrels of beer.
After Krug passes away, Joseph Schlitz takes over the brewery, renaming it the Joseph Schlitz Brewing Company.
Schlitz Brewing Co. now produces and sells roughly 2,000 barrels of beer.
In the wake of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, Schlitz sends hundreds of barrels of beer to the City. Its support led the brand to become historically known as “The Beer that Made Milwaukee Famous.”
The trademarked “Belted Globe” is used on all Schlitz bottle labels.
“The Beer that Made Milwaukee Famous” is introduced as an official slogan at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
With over 1 million barrels sold, Schlitz becomes the largest brewery in the world.
Schlitz introduces the now ubiquitous “Brown Bottle,” an innovation that inhibits light from spoiling beer as quickly.
Prohibition is enacted and the brewery is renamed the Joseph Schlitz Beverage Company. Its trademark slogan is also changed to “The Drink that Made Milwaukee Famous.”
Prohibition is repealed, allowing the Company to change its name back. Production volumes surge to pre-Prohibition levels.
Due to rationing for World War II, canned beer is only offered to the U.S. military and only in drab olive-colored cans.
Schlitz beer is once again available to the general public.
Following the WWII production downturn, Schlitz quickly regains international prominence, selling 6.35 million barrels in 1952.
Schlitz introduces the 7 oz. “Little Joe” bottle.
Schlitz introduces the Industry’s first 16 oz. flat-top beer can.
The 24 oz. “Tall Boy” can is introduced by Schlitz.
Schlitz continues to be at the forefront of product innovation by introducing the first aluminum “Soft Top” can.
Schlitz does away with the need for a church key by adopting the first “Pop Top” can.
Unable to keep up with demand, the Company builds a 34-acre brewery in Winston-Salem, NC. With a 4.4 million barrel annual production capacity, it became the largest brewery in the world.
The Company sells 21.3 million barrels.
The Schlitz Brewing Company is acquired by Stroh’s.
Pabst Brewing Company acquires the Schlitz brand.
The premium “Classic ‘60s Formula” that made Schlitz the top American Lager for decades is reintroduced.