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United Brewery Workers Records

Identifier: IBT0003

Scope and Contents

The United Brewery Workers Records consists of convention proceedings, Officers’ and Presidents’ reports, General Executive Board minutes, miscellaneous printed matter and general correspondence microfilm. The materials range in date from 1888-1977.


  • 1888-2004


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Biographical / Historical

In 1973, after many years of sometimes violent jurisdictional disputes with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), the International Union of United Brewery, Flour, Cereal, Soft Drink and Distillery Workers of America merged with its arch-rival, becoming the Brewery and Soft Drink Conference of the IBT. Founded in 1886 as the National Union of Brewery Workmen, the union was largely composed of German immigrants. Its convention proceedings and publications were printed in German until 1903 and bilingually until 1917.

Affiliated with the American Federation of Labor (AFL) from the time of its founding, the United Brewery Workers Union withdrew from the AFL in 1946 to affiliate with the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO). A particularly violent series of jurisdictional battles between the United Brewery Workers and the Teamsters took place in Pittsburgh in 1946 which included strikes, picket lines, street fights and lawsuits. What became known as the “Pittsburgh Beer War” was the subject of a Congressional investigation in 1947.

The decision to merge with the Teamsters stemmed from the closing of hundreds of local breweries in the 1950s and 1960s as well as the expanded competition with large national brewers such as Anheuser-Busch. Due to the numerous name changes the union undertook over the years and to the length of its name at the time of the merger, the collection is referred to as The United Brewery Workers Records.


16.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



This collection consists of material relating to the United Brewery Workers Union. Included are historical material, convention proceedings, General Executive Board minutes and general correspondence microfilm, and newspapers. These range in date from 1888-1977.


Organized into six series: Historical Materials, Convention Materials, General Executive Board Session Materials, General Correspondence Microfilm, The Brewery Worker newspaper and materials relating to Local 222.

Physical Location

Materials are stored off-site, and will require additional retrieval time. Please contact the Special Collections Research Center for more information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Transferred by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, 2/1/2011 (2011.049) and 11/15/2014 (2014.042).

Guide to the United Brewery Workers records, 1888-1977
Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University Repository

2130 H Street NW
Washington 20052 United States of America