Civil War Beer Taps into History

FREDERICK, MD - Three businesses in Frederick have found a unique way to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.

Brewer's Alley, Monocacy Brewing Company, and the National Museum of Civil War Medicine have come together to make nine Civil War themed beers.

"It's a very important day, a monumental day in U.S. history, so it's a beer that's used to commemorate, to draw attention to, so that we don't forget what has happened and that we understand what it did for us as a nation. It really helped to define who we are today," brewmaster Tom Flores said.

The first one, Antietam Ale, is already on tap at Brewer's Alley. It's also sold at some stores, and the label is only the second U.S. beer bottle in history to feature a picture of the American flag.

"It was a lot of fun to approach the development of the recipe because you kind of had to think to yourself what would beer back then have been like for the common folk basically," Flores said. "Only the really rich people could afford beer of significant strength."

The museum will receive one dollar for every case sold.

"Understanding the human element of it with the cost of blood, sweat, tears, and toil is something that I hope by elevating the profile of it will make people more aware of what it was that we went through as a nation," Flores said.

The second Civil War beer should be out in the winter. Different yeasts are being tested for it right now.

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