Homebrewing Has Come A Long Way

Homebrewing Has Come A Long WayHomebrewing beer has been around for over 12,000 years. The first beer might not have been as good as the beer we drink today or it could even have been better. People will argue about many things about homebrewing beer and one argument is that the reason the world became civilized was that people wanted beer.  Along with civilization came agriculture, both of these because people simply wanted beer.

The ancient Sumerians loved their beer so much that they had a beer goddess. The beer goddess was named Ninkasi. While today both men and women brew beer in ancient Sumerian the women were the beer brewers. Homebrewing beer was considered a woman’s job.

Looking at a time line for beer production, in 1587 the first beer made from corn was produced. This is was in what we call Colonial Virginia, which is now a part of the United States. In 1620 the pilgrims landed far north of where they had intended to land.  No one really knows the reason for this, maybe it was because they were out of beer. They had to get off the boat in order to brew their beer.  In fact, a brewery was one of the first buildings built in Plymouth. Homebrewing beer was the only way to get their beverage of choice.

In Colonial America just as in ancient Sumerian women were homebrewing beer. While the men were out hunting in order to put food on the table, the women were at homebrewing beer. Water, which was a home to pathogens, tasted bad creating a distrust of the water but it was found that the water once turned into beer tasted a lot better. Not only did it taste a lot better it was not a home to the pathogens which caused people to get sick.

George Washington and Thomas Jefferson along with other founders of the United States brewed beer at home. Actually, Thomas Jefferson’s wife bid most of their brewing. Therefore, while many of the man were working on getting the United States going the women were homebrewing beer.

In 1919, homebrewing beer became illegal. This was the start of the Prohibition in the United States. Even though it was illegal, homebrewing beer still went on and was sold through bootleggers. In fact homebrewing beer was the only way to get beer.

Finally, in 1933 the Prohibition ended. It was ended with the passing of the 21st Amendment but a typo left out two major words “and beer”. This would have legalized the homebrewing beer and wine. It was until many decades later that it was made legal. Therefore, those who were brewing at home were outlaws for many years.

President of the United States, Jimmy Carter finally signed an amendment that made homebrewing beer legal. The H.R. 1337 was signed on October 14, 1978. Finally, it was not only outlaws’ homebrewing beer.  Senator Alan Cranston sponsored the amendment and it stated that homebrewing beer was not to be taxed if it was brewed for home use only.  On February 1, 1979 if finally went into effect.

There are not only many clubs there are also homebrewing beer clubs. One of the clubs that was founded in 1974 and is still around today is the Maltose Falcons.

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