Monday, October 28, 2013

Who was George Bottler?

You probably have more company if you fall into the camp that would answer that question with, "I don't know," than those who know the answer.  The short answer is that there were two George Bottlers, brothers, who were a part of the early history of brewing in Oregon. After arriving in 1856 George M. established City Brewery the following year (which later became Henry Weinhard's) and George F. started The Dalles Brewery in 1859.

Beyond knowing that you might think, "That's nice but what does that have to do with me?" The George F. died and was buried at Lone Fir Cemetery in inner SE Portland by fellow brewers while his brother was in Germany. Upon George M.'s return he had a tomb built over the grave but that tomb has seen better days. In fact using "crumbling" to describe it would be quite appropriate.

Lone Fir Cemetery estimates that it may cost up to $80,000 to restore the tomb of one of the first brewers in the state and is in the process of raising those funds. McMenamins held a fundraiser in July and most recently Art Larrance donated $10,000 on behalf of the Oregon Brewers Festival. You can make your own tax-deductible contribution to the Bottler Tomb restoration project by sending a check to Friends of Lone Fir Cemetery. (The end of the year is coming up and wouldn't you rather choose to give your money to a worthy cause and help offset what you'll be "giving" to Uncle Sam?)

For a more detailed history of the Bottler brothers and the history of the cemetery check out "Beer Tales from the Tomb" in the October issue of Oregon Beer Growler.

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