Bud-Weis-Er. That familiar croak, first emitted by three animated frogs in a halftime ad during the 1995 Super Bowl, quickly became synonymous with good-ole-boys and the world's most popular American beer, Budweiser. Besides these lovable amphibians, Budweiser has spawned numerous pop-culture phenomenons in the course of selling itself, via characters like Spuds Mackenzie, Bud Man, and the “Whassup” guys. Memorable advertising campaigns such as these are nothing new to the King of Beers. In fact, in the world of beer, marketing and brewing have always gone hand in hand.

Budweiser grew out of the marriage of Adolphus Busch and Eberhard Anheuser’s daughter Lilly in 1861, when Busch began working for the Anheuser family’s brewery business in St. Louis, Missouri. Fifteen years later, Anheuser-Busch created Budweiser, one of the first light-flavored lagers in America. The term “Budweiser,” which is also a word for people from the Czech town of Budweis, was actually adopted by at least three breweries during the late 1800s. Generically, the name described any Bohemian-style lager, a type of beer that was much lighter in color and taste than most American beers at the time. In 1907, the breweries struck a deal that gave Anheuser-Busch exclusive rights to the name within the United States. Even then, branding was everything.

The introduction and subsequent popularity of Budweiser also coincided with advances in transportation and refrigeration technologies. When Anheuser-Busch was founded, most beer was sold in the local community where it was produced. In the early 1870s, though, Busch introduced an exciting new process at his brewery called pasteurization, which greatly increased the distance barrels of beer could be shipped before spoiling. In the following years, the company also adopted refrigerated railcars and strategically located ice houses to keep its beer fresh during transport. The company was soon able to ship Budweiser clear across the United States, making it the country’s first nationally distributed beer.

Anheuser-Busch was also an early adopter of inventive advertising methods to spread its brand’s visibility. For example, Budweiser was one of the first beverages to have individually labeled bottles, which helped differentiate the beer in small-town stores and taverns far from its source. Anheuser-Busch also produced novelty items to reward productive salesmen, distributors, and innkeepers. One particularly prized item from the early 1900s was a combination pocket knife and corkscrew bottle opener, many of which were given out by Adolphus Busch himself. The earliest versions of these folding knives came with carved bone handles and included a tiny Stanhope lens with an image of either Adolphus or the brewery mounted inside. Later versions were eventually made using nickel, brass, mother of pearl, and colorful enamel ornamentation.

During prohibition, Anheuser-Busch transitioned to non-alcoholic products in order to stay afloat. While Budweiser beer was out of production from 1920-1933, the company made soft drinks, medicinal malt tonics, ice cream, and Bevo, a non-alcoholic cereal beverage. After the 21st Amendment was passed, Budweiser resumed production, accompanied by a plethora of Budweiser signs, trays, bottle openers, and other promotional items. Lighted bar signs featuring the brand's iconic bowtie logo, as well as pool-table lights enclosing a rotating team of plastic Clydesdales, are among some of the most collected pieces of Budweiser memorabilia from the 20th century.

Anheuser-Busch released its first series of collectible ceramic beer steins in 1975—steins became an annual holiday tradition beginning in 1980. These heavy stoneware mugs usually depicted wintry forest scenes featuring the Clydesdale team of horses pulling a Budweiser wagon, although steins were also created celebrating the brand's association with NASCAR, football players, and, of course, characters of its own making such as Bud Man. The popularity of Bud Light, which was introduced in 1982 as a lower-calorie version of Budweiser, surpassed the company’s flagship brew as the top-selling beer in the U.S. in 2001, with a flurry of Bud Light signage and merchandise following in its wake.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Red Fox Chapter

Red Fox Chapter

The guys at the Connecticut Chapter of the Brewery Collectibles Club of America have created a full-on tribute to t… [read review or visit site]

Bottle Cap Index

Bottle Cap Index

Assembled by Gunther Rademacher with the help of several other contributors, this collection of over half a million… [read review or visit site]

Plopsite.de

Plopsite.de

Norbert Lamping's collection of 600+ ceramic bottle stoppers, Hutter stoppers, swingtops, swivel stoppers, and ligh… [read review or visit site]

Bock Beer Labels

Bock Beer Labels

A quick tour of pre-Prohibition bock beer label designs with nice, high resolution scans. Do the whole slide show o… [read review or visit site]

Trappist Beers and Monks

Trappist Beers and Monks

An interesting site dedicated to Trappist beers and the history of the development of beer brewed by Trappist Bened… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Vintage 1930's Budweiser Beer In Bottles 15" Embossed Metal SignSturgis 75th Anniversary Budweiser Metal Sign Limited Edition (no Reserve!)Budweiser Beer Sign Game Room Bud Bowtie Opti Neon Crown Led Light Up Bar Or.. Budweiser Eagle Claw Non-oi Flat Top Beer Can Anheuser Busch St. Louis, MissouriAuthentic Nos Rare Budweiser On Tap Ruby Red Neon SignOld School Budweiser Neon SignC. Conrad Anheuser Busch Budweiser Paper Label Beer Bottle 24oz, St. Louis, Mo.Anheuser-busch Bud Budweiser Beer Sign Light Opti Neon Red Bow Breweriana 30"Vintage Bud Man Draft Beer Tap Handle---free Custom Tap Stand!!!C. Conrad Anheuser Busch Budweiser Paper Label Beer Bottle 12oz, St. Louis, Mo.1981 Budweiser Beer Snowy Woodlands Holiday Xmas Stein Mug Cs 50 ExcellentBeer Tap Handle Knob Lot Of 13 Genesee Miller Bud Light Moosehead Old MilwaukeeVintage Budweiser Beer 2 Frogs Metal Tin Sign Man Cave Bar Advertising LargeVintage 1981 Budweiser Holiday Beer Stein Cs50Anheuser Busch Budweiser 1999 United Way Fair Share Stein No Box1st Of Founders Series Anheuser Busch Budweiser Adolphus Busch Beer Stein#13 YqzBud Light Rotating Pub Sign Light Bar Man Cave Beer Double Sided - (see Video)6 Bud Light 2015 Nfl Team Beer Cans Saints Ravens Eagles Falcons Panthers SkinsRare Red Dog Beer Lighted Sign Miller Non Budweiser Or Coors1993 Budweiser Birds Of Prey Osprey Beer Stein Anheuser Busch Limited EditionVintage 1987 Budweiser Beer Metal Sign "bud" King Of Beers Large 36" X 26" RareBudweiser Smiling Charlie Metal Beer Bar Sign Tin Metal Dorm Man Cave 30" TallHarley Davidson Sturgis 75th Anniversary Budweiser Clydesdales MirrorVintage...budweiser Holiday Beer Stein Snow Covered Birch Trees 1981 Cs50..(5)Pool Table Light BudweiserVintage Anheuser Busch Budweiser Beer Large 3-d Logo Display 21" Wide 12" TallVintage Budweiser Beer King Of Beers Team Clydesdales Lighted Bar SignA Figural Bud Light Denver Broncos Tap HandleVintage Huge Budweiser Inflatable Can Of Beer 3 Feet Tall Bar DecorVintage Budweiser (bud) Pittsburgh Pirates Beer Tap Handle21 Beer Pull Tap Pub Draft Handle Bud Light Leinies Goose IslandNhra Drag Racing Budweiser Bud Light Store Masei Neon Light Sign 13"x7"Nib Rare Budweiser Bud Light Spuds Mackenzie Lidded Character Beer Stein #753Lot 7 Beer Tap Handle Sweet Water Blue Shock Top Lemon Stroh's Budweiser CoorsAnheuser-busch Budweiser Retro Petro Light Vintage Htf Only One On EbayLouie Lizard Budweiser Beer Sign Anheuser BuschBudweiser Christmas Holiday Beer Stein / MugSpuds Mackenzie Vintage 1988 Bar Display Advertising Bud LightNew 24x24 Handcrafted Budweiser Clydesdales Horse Beer Bar Real Neon Light Sign1981 Budweiser Holiday Stein Christmas Mug Snowy Woodlands Brazil Clydesdales Budweiser Cs-19 Variation #4 Green Cases 1st Holiday Stein 5" Htf ExcellentNew Budweiser Beer Palm Trees Real Glass Neon Light Bar Pub SignBudweiser Clydesdale Bar Light - King Of Beers Horse WagonVintage Antique Budweiser Bud Beer Lighted Wall Globe Sconce Tested Bar LightVintage Bud Light Billards Tap Marker Tap Handle Item 801-107 1990 Dtd BoxedBudweiser Leather Chair One Of A KindBudweiser Pool Table Light Fixture 48" Long, FluorecentVtg 80's Spud Mackenzie Bud Light Bar Light (the Original Party Animal) EucVtg 1981 Budweiser Holiday Beer Stein-clydesdales/birch Trees Mug-bud-ceramarteBudweiser Nascar #3 Beer Race Car Neon Sign Lighting 13x 8 FreeVintage Old Budweiser Champion Clydesdales 1st Edition Holiday Stein Cs19 1980Ceramarte Brazil Budweiser Clydesdales Beer Stein MugBudweiser Bud Light Us Car Auto Dealer Chevy Store Neon Sign 16"x13"Budweiser Tin1976 Budweiser Grants Farm Stein CeramarteVintage 1988 Budweiser Label Frog Bar Mirror 11 X 16Rare Vintage 1970's Budweiser King Of Beers Oval Sign 1876 Anheuser-busch Budweiser Beer Banner 82" X 22" Motorcycle Tank Man Cave Decor2014 Budweiser Holiday Beer Stein Mug Glass Nib Clydesdale Horses Man Cave Gift1981 Budweiser Stein