A short story of beer labels

For several centuries beer was generally stored and carried in barrels to be served openly or sold.
The first bottles made of stoneware appeared after 1800, which sometimes bore burned-in or
stamped indications of its origin. The first beer glass bottles provided with embossed labels were
produced a few decades later.

Between 1870 and 1880 label export-oriented bottles with labels made of paper surfaced. This
cost-efficient method became widely accepted. In addition, tags were and are still used as primary
means of labelling. What once was labelled with paper for several years is nowadays increasingly
replaced by using printed plastic foils.

Beer labels in Germany

Over the centuries there have been more than 30,000 mostly commercial breweries located in the territory of what is currently known as the Federal Republic of Germany. Only a small percentage of those have ever bottled beer.

According to historic brewery indices and based on my own research, there are more than 4,500 German breweries that have used various forms of labelling.


My archive  

● My collection only includes labels of what is currently known as the Federal
   Republic of Germany.

● It is my personal goal to document at least one label per German brewery and to
   illustrate a historical timeline (chronology) of this brewery if possible.  

● Having collected more or less intensively for about 45 years by now, I managed
   to achieve my goal for 3,300 breweries. Further details can be found in my archive list

● Statistics for certain federal states can be found by clicking on the map shown on the right.

Schleswig-Holstein Hamburg Mecklenburg-West Pomerania Bremen Bremen Lower Saxony Berlin Brandenburg Brandenburg Saxony-Anhalt Saxony Thuringia North Rhine-Westfalia Hesse Rhineland-Palatinate Baden-Wuerttemberg Bavaria Saarland

I am searching.....

Unfortunately, I am missing labels from more than 1,200 German breweries. Those are the ones I am constantly looking for!
I would appreciate your support by offering me some of the many missing labels - by purchase or in exchange for other labels.

The breweries I am currently missing labels of can be found in my archive list .

The labels do not have to be "hot-off-the press"; even labels that are not in the best condition have a story to tell and a certain charme. 
Since I am a legitimate collector, copies are the only thing I am definitely not looking for.


I am offering.....

By virtue of collecting labels for many years, I managed to collect in the process thousands of duplicates.
I can offer you labels in exchange or for purchase. Please do not hesitate to contact me.



Structure of the archive

● The entire archive is based on file cards (landscape format A6) that are placed in
    respective file boxes.

● The filing is systematic based on the principle of three levels
   German Federal State > Place (City) > Brewery
● In addition to the title card for each Federal State, the places are further sorted out
   alphabetically followed by separat cards for each of the breweries.




Management of the archive

In order to be able to keep track of my collection, I created a database
which comprises all breweries that are supposed to have labels.
That is the very base for my archive list .

This database enables me to flexibly evaluate, compile, count, search,
display and print specific lists etc.

The structure of database can be reviewed  by clicking on the image on
the right. In addition all labels in the archive are scanned but unfortunately
not (yet) available on this website.

Please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail should you have any
questions. May be I can help you to solve a specific problem with
finding a specific label etc.