Monthly Archives: March 2017

What’s new on the Brewstorian blog? Four new posts just in time for your weekend!

There’s been a flurry of activity on the Oregon Hops and Brewing Archives’ blog.

OHBA student worker Gillian wrote a thoughtful piece on doing research on women in the brewing industries, specifically in how tough it was for her to find meaningful statistics when I asked her to find some.

I spent most of this week in Washington, doing oral history interviews with Sybil Perkins and Robyn Schumacher in Seattle, and Ralph Woodall and Tom Carpenter in Yakima. I had a bit of time to kill between a meeting with Ralph Olson and Ann George, so I went in search of America’s First Brewpub.

Ivy Lin’s “Bitter Harvest” short documentary film is debuting May 3rd at 7:00PM at the Kennedy School in Portland. It is part of Oregon Humanities “This Land / Your Land, My Land” exhibit exploring land ownership issues in minority communities in Oregon, and her piece focuses on Chinese immigrants growing hops in the Willamette Valley from 1890-1930. There will be a panel discussion after the film and I’ll be talking about historical research and saving these stories.

Finally, Deschutes Brewery is hiring a summer intern to process and organize their company records. It’s a pretty awesome opportunity.

Food History Intern: discovering fermentables!

Edel Brau "It's the beer" 1907

Edel Brau “It’s the beer” 1907

The topic of fermentation is an interesting one, and there was a surprising amount of information about it here in the Valley Library. After a day or two of struggling of what to look up, it dawned on me to figure out what kinds of food can be fermented. I had always known about pickled eggs, sauerkraut, vinegar, etc., but it just never clicked in my head that “hey, those are fermented!”

Once I had the stroke of genius, it was easier to find information, and boy is there information about fermentation. Unsurprisingly, there’s a bit of information regarding fermentation in Food Microbiology, as well as a lot of overlap in terms of sources for the fermented food items. There’s also a lot of information about wine, beer, and cider. Mead was a difficult one that kept bringing up different people with the name Mead.

To help make searching for these things easier, I also made up a map of the general locations that have information on each of these fermentation topics and gave ideas of their call numbers.

Food History intern post: thoughts on the domestic economy & bees!

Class in beekeeping, 1912

Class in beekeeping, 1912

When you think of Oregon, you think of the vast acres of trees and the strong lumber industry. However, there’s a flourishing domestic food economy, and it’s been a fascinating facet of food history to delve into.

Dairy, wool, and orchards are common in Oregon, and it’s not uncommon to find an orchard, sheep, or dairy farm on the beautiful back roads of Oregon. Something that came up that I hadn’t previously thought about was beekeeping in Oregon.

Especially at the turn of the 20th century, there were several clubs, classes, and organizations for beekeeping. When delving a bit further into the beekeeping, it was fascinating to see that the equipment used for beekeeping hasn’t changed much.

Food Writing ~ our food history intern talks publications!


Food writing is one of those tricky facets of history. What do you continue as writing? People’s notes? The things they’ve published? Magazines, books, periodicals? Luckily enough, OSU has a wide array of publishing. From books published via the Oregon State University Press to faculty in food oriented departments, we have a lot here on campus.

One of the most fascinating things found during the food publishing searching were countless recipe books down on the first floor, ranging from a wide array of decades. As well, they had food periodicals dating to pre-20th century, and let me tell you, it’s an incredible feeling to hold a book in your hands that dates in the late 1800’s. 

Here’s a gallery of some of the awesome finds from the 1st floor!


IMG_0169FullSizeRender[4] FullSizeRender[2] FullSizeRender[1]