RICHTER’S SALOON AND GROCERY : SOCIAL HISTORY : THE RUDER BREWERY : BEER

This vintage real photo postcard serves as a wonderful illustration of social history. For a reason unknown to us, the community gathered in front of Richter’s Saloon & Grocery for this photo. The whole town is represented. There are babies, children, and young and older adults. If you look carefully, you will see that there was a lot of activity occurring when this photograph was taken. First, there are a several musicians in the group. Some are playing their instruments while others are displaying them. There are a number of men in the back row drinking out of bottles. Why are they congregated in the back row? It is likely a safe assumption that they are drinking beer or some other form of alcohol. Included in the photo is an oppositional defiant little girl. She is in the first row and is the only child or adult facing the “wrong” way. I’m kidding about the “oppositional defiant disorder” diagnosis. The townspeople in this photograph are wearing an interesting assortment of hats. There is a sign advertising a brewery attached to the front of the building. The advertising is for Ruder Beer. The George Ruder Brewing Company was founded in 1892 and operated until 1920. The company was located in Wausau, Wisconsin. By now, you have probably been wondering where Richter’s Saloon & Grocery was located. I am wondering too. I found two possible locations, but there may be more. An Indianapolis, Indiana city directory lists one of the cities businesses as being William Richter & Son Grocery and Saloon. I can not determine the year of the directory. The second possibility concerning the location of Richter’s Saloon & Grocery is more remote. In 1911, there was a Emilie Richter running a saloon in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This is the same year that the photograph was taken. I have been unable to learn the name of the saloon. The fact that Milwaukee and Wausau (home of Ruder Beer) are in Wisconsin, may be significant. The Kruxo stamp box on the reverse of this postcard, dates the card to sometime between 1908 and 1920. This supports the 1911 date printed on the front of this postcard. SOLD

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