e Gror - Post-Repeal

After the legalization of 3.2% beer in April, 1933 and full Repeal of Prohibition the following December, the individual states began to write new alcoholic beverage laws and the return of notorious "growler" was one of the items of concern (along with the "return of the saloon", drinking ages, licensing, etc.)

[LEFT] the states weren't united in the legalizing "draught beer to go".

The three leading brewing states - Pennsylvania, New York and Wisconsin- all legalized the growler within the first few years of Repeal. Altho', note that among the states that initially banned the growler was also Pennsylvania. As noted in the articles, Montana and Indiana, too, initially banned the growler only to legalize it later in the 1930's.

The growler would be featured in many advertising campaigns for beer, brewers having always stressed the "old fashioned" aspect of their brands. (above) A coaster using the logo of Philadelphia's Gretz Brewing Company (see also their "Half and Half" labels).

(Above) ad from the "West End Brewing Co. (today known as the F. X. Matt Brewing Co. - brewers of Saranac) of Utica, NY advertising their then flagship "Utica Club" brand.

With the invention of the beer can just a few years after Repeal in 1935, many brewers would connect the pre-Prohibition "can of beer" with the new package and use the growler in it's advertising for their new canned beers.

For examples, click-

The Beer Can and The Growler

A news photo from 1946 (during the post-WWII grain restrictions) shows that up until then the "growler" had still been an option in this New York City bar.

In the Baltimore area, the "growler" lived on into the 1960's, where local brewers supplied logoed glass jugs (which, according to one source, took on the "duck" terminology), as can be seen in this photo from an auction site.

In New Jersey, where local law prohibited bars from selling "package goods" after the legal hours for liquor stores (10 pm and all day Sunday), and other states, draught beer "to go" was sold in round, 1-quart cardboard containers with slip-on lids. Some bars switched to plastic containers by the 1960's, before the law was changed in 1971, which eventually doomed the "container" of beer in the Garden State.


(above) a "Liquatite" cardboard container, with slip-on lid and metal base, mfg. by Sanitary Can Co.

Click for more on the cardboard containers

These two Montana articles (above

and below) dated only a day apart,

in particular illustrate the confusion

in the 1930's as states wrote their

new alcoholic beverage laws. Also

of interest is the reference below of

workers in Butte having once used

their miner-style metal lunch pails as

growlers, on the way home from

work. It also notes that the current

"growlers" were more commonly "jars" -

since the more modern lunch buckets

weren't applicable for liquids.

CCC ad for cardboard containers, Reading (PA) Eagle, 8-14-1947.

(Above, below and to the left) - Ads for a number of mid-Western stores before, during and after World War II selling draught beer to go, in both half gallon and 1 gallons jugs. Only the Ohio chain, Stone's Grill, however, appears to have referred to them as "Growlers".

Click for more Gill & Co. and other "jug draft beer" ads of the Chicago area and mid-West, 1937-57

click above for full view

At least three brewers, Blitz-Weinhard, Northwest Brewing Co. and Star Brewing Co. used a bottle similar in design to today's craft beer and brewpub growlers.


In some Western states, several breweries sold their beers, unpasteurized and bottled at the brewery, in "jugs" - half gallon bottles, shaped like a large "steinie" bottle. (In the East and Mid-West, such beer was usually packaged in half-gallon "picnic" bottles).

Prices for a Gallon of domestic draft beer "to go" from a composite of two Florida retailer's ads in 1966. A quart bottle of Pabst Blue Ribbon sold for around 39¢ at the time. Miller's draught-only dark beer, Munchener, sold for the same price as kegs of Miller High Life.

Ads from a chain of Ohio restaurants that specialized in growler sales during WWII. Note the growler size has grown to a full gallon of beer. Stone's sold an "exclusive" brand called "Royal Canadian Beer" (brewed locally in Ohio by the New Philadelphia Brewing Co., of New Philadelphia) and sold it over the bar in huge one-quart glasses for 15¢- so the 69¢ gallon growler wasn't as good a deal as it first appears.

In one interesting case


was bottled by a local Utah bottler, the Blue Eagle Beer Company. While independent bottlers were common in the pre-Prohibition era, most brewers after Repeal bottled their own beer.(below - click on ads )

click for ads from

Marinoff Beer from the Northwest Brewing Co. of Washington


Hop Gold Beer and Globe Beer in jugs

In a 1985 illustration of various glasses and containers for draught beer, Anheuser-Busch lists both a "bucket" (at the unusual size of 55 ounces- a bit shy of a half gallon) and a "wax carton" similar to a milk carton. At the time, New York State had enacted a mandatory 5¢ bottle deposit and the company was trying to encourage some retailers to switch to selling draught beer to go to avoid charging the deposit and the trouble of accepting returns.

See also other GROWLER History pages:

The Pre-Prohibition Growler

Draught Beer to Go-The Growler Reborn in the Craft Beer Era

(Incomplete -page still under construction)

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