Treasures Found in the State Archives

The New Season of Monthly History Talks Kicks Off with Tracy Rebstock

We all have archives and perhaps haven’t even thought about it.  Personal papers, family photo albums, scrapbooks and meaningful artifacts from your past are all part of your personal archives.  While they may not be in a good state of organization, they are still treasures.  We here at the Olympia Tumwater Foundation have some very nice archives that are an important part of our community history.  We are working hard on a project to organize and digitize them to make them accessible to researchers.  It only seemed appropriate that we begin our new season of free monthly history talks here at the historic Schmidt House with an expert in archives, which we did on Thursday, October 15th at noon with guest speaker Tracy Rebstock.

Can you identify this photograph?

Girls in garden photo

Recently, the Tumwater Historical Association donated this framed photo to the Schmidt House. It shows a group of girls working in a garden. The girls are for the most part dressed alike, with white blouses, dark skirts, ties and bonnets. To the left stands a man holding a garden tool and a bunch of beets or radishes. The title of the photo is merely “Tumwater Countryside, circa 1900. Courtesy Olympia Brewing Company.”

Louis Schmidt Builds the Original Capital Brewery

Are you old enough to remember the days of radio and early television newscasts when the headlines were introduced with the phrase, “Dateline!”? That was a prevalent way of getting the viewer’s or listener’s attention for the next story. News documentaries and newsreels in the theaters often used that as part of their presentation. I’d like to do that here as we go back to the very beginnings of the brewery in Tumwater when the Schmidt brothers, Leopold and Louis, began work
on the Capital Brewing Company at the foot of the Deschutes falls. The Schmidts had purchased five acres of

The Birth of a Slogan–the Story of “It’s the Water”

slogan art_0064     

The following story first appeared in the August 1951 issue of “It’s the Water News,” the employee newsletter of the Olympia Brewing Company in Tumwater, Washington.

The author of this article was Frank Kenney, who was secretary of OBC before prohibition. In 1951, a commemorative dinner was given by the management at the Governor Hotel, and Frank was presented with a 50-year pin.

I remember the day as distinctly as if it were yesterday. Forty-nine years ago. 1902. I had been thinking for sometime about an advertising aid for our beer. I had decided on this particular morning to talk about it to Leopold Schmidt, founder of the Olympia Brewing Company.