Gerst 57



Gerst 57 Pilsner Beer was branded to celebrate 57 years of brewing by the William Gerst Brewing Company. In 1947 the company decided to promote its flagship beer as the label we bring to you this month, a brand which continued until the brewery closed in 1954 due to increased national competition.

The popular and successful Gerst line of beer had its beginnings in 1893 when William Gerst bought a controlling interest of shares from his then partner and renamed Moerlein-Gerst to William Gerst Brewing Company.  Prior to 1893, the company had been known as Nashville Brewing but was sold suddenly in 1889 to two German brewers when one of the owners died.

Once William Gerst was in full control, the brewery flourished. It was known for its catchy slogans such as “America’s Line of Thirst Defense” and “America’s Thirst Calls for Gerst.”  The brewery also produced a variety of elaborate promotional materials.  Many unique pieces of breweriana exist from Gerst, including Twentieth Century corncob pipes, Beer Trays depicting the brewery’s Gold medal win at the 1897 Centennial Expo, wildlife lithographs, beer glasses, beer signs, and beer tab knobs. Dedicated collectors may also find glass etched bottles from Gerst Bottle Works, which dealt with carbonated waters, seltzers and Orange Crush soda to name a few!

Gerst brewing ceased operations and production 65 years ago, and there are no active trademarks or ownership to its name or labels. In 2017, however, Nashville Brewing Company was resurrected and several of its lager beers are served in the local area.