It’s almost impossible to find Montana’s frontier glory day beer brand signs…but these reproductions are the next best thing. This sign from our famous Billings Brewing Company’s signature Old Fashion Brand is amazing…unlike many reproductions sold via eBay and elsewhere this features crisp art work and bright colors. A perfect piece of Montana brewing history at an affordable price. Printed on .125 Metal.
About Billings Brewing Co.: The Billings Brewing Co., created in February of 1900, was the brainchild of three men from Butte. All three were involved in Butte’s Centennial Brewing Co. Henry Mueller, a Prussian, used cash from successful mining claims to buy the Centennial Brewery. Louis Best, from Milwaukee, worked in the malt liquor business and was related to the founders of Pabst Brewing. Phil Grein, a German, spent 17 years working for the Anaconda Brewing Co. before taking charge of the Billings Brewery operation. The plant sat across from the Depot at 2319 Montana Ave., about where Venture Theater is today.
In mid-April of 1900, more than 3,000 people showed up to taste the plant’s first beer and tour the plant, which had a dozen brewing vats on the first floor and was capable of producing 20,000 barrels of beer a year. The flagship brand, “Old Fashion,” had a red label. But near the end, as the plant deteriorated and the beer’s reputation nose-dived, the label’s color changed to a green. Customers sarcastically branded it the “Green Death.” The plant was demolished in 1959, but collectors have kept alive memories of Billings’ first microbrewery.